May 21–23, 2022

Rella’s Cambrian Dream

AR Theatre


Join us on this AR trip to the past in this unique theatre experience 500 million years in the making!

An anomalocaris, ancient creature of the deep

Anomalocarus, Image by Aaron John Gregory



Join an expedition into the distant past to learn about the beginning of life on Earth in Canada’s Rocky Mountains, 508 million years ago. During this prototype of Rella’s Cambrian Dream, your smartphone transforms the world into an ancient ocean and you become a researcher using story, song and technology to discover the first creatures on Earth. Follow Rella, a tiny lace crab, on a journey to find a new home and learn about the community of creatures in her ocean. Be part of the first audience to get an inside look into a new form of interactive theatre, blending live performance, audio play and augmented reality. 

Produced by The Rella Collective. Supported by Harbourfront Centre, Canada Council for the Arts, Ontario Arts Council and the University of Calgary School of Creative and Performing Arts. 

About MIO_816, Writer

MIO_816 is the digital name of a Canadian writer whose original and adapted stage and radio works have been seen and heard across Canada (and beyond) at the Young People’s Theatre, the Shaw Festival, the National Arts Centre of Canada, Soulpepper Theatre, Factory Theatre, Alberta Theatre Projects and CBC Radio. As an adaptor, he has adapted the works of Shakespeare, Dickens, C.S. Lewis and Margaret Atwood. When not writing stories, MIO_816 enjoys researching stories, climbing mountains, co-developing new ways of making dreams come true, and dreaming new types of goals. He lives in Toronto and is still sometimes called Michael O’Brien.  

About Christine Brubaker, Director and Dramaturg

Christine Brubaker is a director, actor and dramaturg based in Calgary, AB. She worked on Canadian stages for 25 years and won two Dora Mavor Moore Awards for performance, the 2014 Gina Wilkinson Award and the 2016 Ken McDougall Award for Direction. Brubaker directed the world premieres of The Horse and His Boy, Wilde Tales (Shaw Festival), Smoke (Downstage Theatre), Elle (Theatre Passe Muraille) and the Canadian workshop premiere of Susanna Fournier’s antigone lives*. She is the creator of Henry G20, a contemporary adaptation of Shakespeare’s Henry V, and made a digital theatre project retelling the conflict between police and protesters during the G20 Summit in Toronto in June 2010. She is a co-creator and performer in 7th Cousins: An Automythography, which traces a 700km walk she made from Pennsylvania to Ontario with collaborator Erin Brubacher and is also published by Book*hug press. Brubaker teaches directing and acting in the School of Creative and Performing Arts at the University of Calgary. 

About Deanna H. Choi, Composer

Deanna H. Choi (she/her) composes original music for film and television and designs sonic environments for live performance. Formerly a published researcher in behavioural neuroscience, Choi applies the principles of psychology in her work. In 2021, she served as one of six Slaight Music Residents at the Canadian Film Centre, chaired by Lesley Barber and Marc Jordan. Choi recently scored the documentary Last of the Right Whales (HitPlay Productions/CBC) and has designed over 100 theatrical productions with companies across Turtle Island. She teaches sound design at the National Theatre School of Canada and York University, and is the 2020 laureate of the Pauline McGibbon Award for Theatre Design – the second sound designer in the award’s history. Choi is a member of the Associated Designers of Canada, Screen Composers Guild of Canada and SOCAN.

About Laura Philipps, Producer

Laura Philipps is a freelance producer and production manager of theatre, dance and multimedia works. Based in Toronto, Philipps is a second-generation Canadian living and working on Treaty 13 Territory (Toronto). She studied at the University of Toronto and received training through Crow’s Theatre’s Artists Cross Training Program, Generator’s Artist-Producer Training and Seneca College’s Film and Television Microcredentials. Philipps is the Metcalf Foundation producing intern with Pratibha Arts, working to support culturally-diverse artists in the Canadian dance ecology. She is a member of Means of Production, a collective of production managers and technical directors advocating for improved working conditions for live production leadership. Highlights of her recent credits include, Producer of the Henry G20 mobile app (2021), Lighting Designer of Nostrovia by Raine Kerns (York MFA 2020), Producer of Sara Porter’s Getting to Know Your Fruit (2020), Producer/Production Manager of No Woman’s Land by Jaberi Dance Theatre (2019), Production Manager/Set Builder of Knives in Hens at Coal Mine Theatre (2019), Stage Manager of Moon Merge at The Bentway (2019), Stage Manager of Mr. Truth and Safe and Sorry by Lester Trips Theatre (2019).

About Olivia Wheeler, Sound Designer

Olivia Wheeler is a mixed-race Chinese Canadian sound designer, composer and multi-disciplinary artist. She recently graduated from the University of Victoria, where she focused her studies on performance design, technical theatre and music technology. Some of her main artistic practices include sound design for theatre, audio plays, podcasts, immersive theatre design and puppet building. Her recent work includes sound design for It’ll Come to Me (Theatre SKAM), creation and design of her own immersive installation EVOKE, assistant to the sound and video designer for The Wedding Party (Alberta Theatre Projects) and the development of a new play through the conVERGE micro-residency (Intrepid Theatre/Puente Theatre).

About Annie Tung, Creative Technologist

Annie Tung is a digital artist and creative technologist currently living in Toronto. She creates surreal digital landscapes that invite people to immerse themselves into the sceneries through augmented and virtual reality. These scenes provide a space for people to explore a dreamlike dimension meant to be peaceful and calming. As a creative technologist and strategist, Tung brings a combination of art and technology innovation thinking into the projects she is involved in. With a deep understanding of recent technologies and their capabilities and purpose, she can help people identify opportunities that can aid their cause and project. Tung believes in the ethical use of technology, as it is meant to work with people to solve their problems and, in effect, build an empathetic and inclusive digital future. 

Dates & Times

May 21
12pm – 12:45pm
2pm – 2:45pm
4pm – 4:45pm

May 22
12pm – 12:45pm
2pm – 2:45pm
4pm – 4:45pm

May 23
12pm – 12:45pm
2pm – 2:45pm
4pm – 4:45pm


West Hallway

235 Queens Quay West
Toronto, ON

Keywords KidsTechnologyTheatre