Drew Hayden Taylor
During the last thirty years of his career, Drew Hayden Taylor has done many things, most of which he is proud of. An Ojibway from the Curve Lake First Nations in Ontario, he has worn many hats in his literary career, from performing stand-up comedy at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C., to being Artistic Director of Canada’s premiere Native theatre company, Native Earth Performing Arts. He has been an award-winning playwright, a journalist/columnist (appearing regularly in several Canadian newspapers and magazines), short-story writer, novelist, television scriptwriter, and has worked on numerous documentaries exploring the Native experience. Most notably as a filmmaker, he wrote and directed Redskins, Tricksters and Puppy Stew, a documentary on Native humour for the National Film Board of Canada, and for CBC, co-created Searching for Winnitou, an exploration of Germany’s fascination with North American Indigenous culture. Two years later he followed it up with the documentary Cottagers and Indians, about Indigenous/non-Indigenous conflicts over land and water issues.
The years of writing have brought him many accolades by his peers, including the Floyd S. Chalmers Award, Dora Mavor Moore Award and the Canadian Author’s Literary Award, He has also been the recipient of many other varied honours; an Honorary Doctorate of Laws from Mount Allison University, a Plaque of Honour on the Peterborough Walk of Fame, the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Award, Ontario Premier’s Award for Creative Arts and Design, and Victoria Martyn Lynch-Staunton Award for Outstanding Artistic Achievement in Theatre, to name a few.