Artistic Residencies

By establishing artistic residencies, Joe Jack & John hopes to broaden the reach of its mission by inviting an artist living with a disability to initiate and direct a creation of their own.

These residencies demonstrate a unique political stance. By handing power to an artist with an intellectual disability, Joe Jack & John continues its research on marginalized aesthetics and speeches. The company also wishes to develop interdependent creative models and practices, allowing the emergence of voices that remain unacknowledged because they are not part of dominant artistic trends. In doing so, Joe Jack & John challenges the hierarchy of aesthetics and continues to dismantle biases and prejudices towards the value of artists who evolve outside the set standards.

The human, logistical and artistic support implemented by the company aims to allow the emergence of free and untainted voices, as well as the birth of each artist’s aesthetic singularities, up to the presentation of their work in professional venues.

Hosting artists-in-residence has led Joe Jack & John to introduce a new role within the artistic teams, that of creative ally (our version of the “creative enabler”, an expression brought forth by Graeae Theatre, London).  The creative ally is a support worker with skills and experience in the discipline practiced by the artist-in-residence. The artist can call upon their creative ally to facilitate the expression of their artistic ideas and the exploration of various creative materials. The ally’s task is flexible and adaptable to each artist’s specific needs in order to support their practice and foster professional accessibility. For the creative ally, respecting the boundary between supporting the artist’s ideas and one’s own creative contribution requires rigor and integrity.


Michael Nimbley, who has participated in four of Joe Jack & John’s productions, is the company’s first artist-in-residence and has been developing his project Les waitress sont tristes since 2018.

This work follows the journey of a rambling man unwillingly defying the established order in a labyrinthine universe .Waitresses revolve around him, perpetually asking themselves “Why are we sad? Why are we mad?” Escape, avoidance and music seem to be the lifelines of these characters repeating the same gestures over and over again.

Contemporary western, Les waitress sont tristesshows us around (and again) a mountain, a bar, stories of drunken cats, shoes, souvenirs, a railroad track, and line dancing, all to the tune of John Denver.

Production is scheduled for the 2021-2022 season.

Ideation, co-direction and performance Michael Nimbley
Creative enabler Catherine Bourgeois


Artist Edon Descollines works with Emma-Kate Guimond on a short multidisciplinary piece combining performance, spoken-word, dance and video.

The store is closing. The door is closed. The lights too. And they will remain closed. Since 1997, every time a store announces its closing, Edon’s heart tightens. He compulsively buys from the shopkeeper, a way to express his empathy and keep a memory of a reality that is doomed to disappear.

According to Edon, behind the closing of the stores lies a virtual giant that generates bankruptcies: the Internet. Who are these salespeople who are taking over the Web? Are they as sympathetic as the fallen merchants? Are we becoming too dependent on technology? Will our future be managed by machines?

Through their research, Edon and Emma-Kate explore nostalgia and childhood, that time when the store was the place of encounters, possibilities, exchanges. They take a stroll through the melancholy and sadness of everyday life, looking into the future, sometimes worriedly, sometimes curiously. Faced with the impossibility of containing their immense creative energy, the duo works by accumulation and contamination, screaming slogans out loud: “We’re sick of it! We don’t give a damn! »

Ideation, co-creation and performance Edon Descollines

Co-creation and performance Emma-Kate Guimond