The Villains Theatre is dedicated to creating transformative theatrical experiences

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December 2, 2015

As a small, independent theatre company, donations from individuals like you make a tremendous difference to us! DONATE NOW  This…

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Arden opens next week!

November 9, 2015

BUY TICKETS NOW  Nov 17 – 22, 8pm nightly at the Keith’s Brewery In the recesses of an ironstone tavern, Alice…

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Happy Halloween!

October 30, 2015

Matt Peach and Tarah Lee Coates in the ghostly Revenger’s Tragedy (2011) October 31: YOU are cordially, HORRIBLY invited to…

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About the Villains

The Villains Theatre is a not-for-profit society based in Kjipuktuk/Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.


The Villains Theatre is dedicated to creating transformative theatrical experiences. Our work is vibrant, provocative, and full of play. We collaborate with creators who inspire us as we strive to grow artistically and share our work with new audiences. We believe that the more accessible our spaces are, the better our theatre will be. We are committed to providing opportunities for artists of all levels of experience, addressing systemic injustices, and contributing to the national theatre landscape.

The Villains Theatre is run by Artistic Producer Colleen Arcturus MacIsaac and Artistic Director Dan Bray. We were founded in 2009 and have been a registered not-for-profit society since 2011.

"Theatre that deserves to be seen."

-Kate Watson. The Coast.

"[The Villains are] back in town with this unique, twisted vision in a crazy, captivating, convention-crushing Hansel and Gretel … The energy is manic… This has to be seen to be believed."

- Hansel und Gretel. Elissa Bernard. NS Theatre Reviews.

“A valuable examination of power with great design and a bold vision.”
Tyrant. Michael Lake. The Coast.

“Brilliant, hopeful...Literate, funny, and theatrically inventive.”
The Blazing World. Elissa Barnard, NS Reviews

“Impressive costumes … gorgeous original music”
The Spanish Tragedy. Michael Lake. The Coast

“Irreverant, funny and far cleverer than it has any right to be...Zomblet adds up to a fun night out this spooky season.”

- Halifax Presents

“Directed with precision … all-around excellent cast … The motives and intentions in the play were effervescently clear, the characters deftly drawn.”
The Nova Scotia Theatre: Best of 2016. Elissa Barnard and Andrea Nemetz. Local Xpress

"The energy is manic… This has to be seen to be believed."

- Hansel und Gretel. Elissa Bernard. NS Reviews.

“…crackles with energy and humour.”
-The Jew of Malta. Kate Watson, The Coast.

"If you like your Halloween horror served with a heavy side of hilarity ... I absolutely recommend Zomblet. It is playful, joyous, smart"

- Zomblet. Amanda Campbell. The Way I See It Theatre Blog.

"Nothing touched by Villains' Dan Bray and Colleen MacIsaac, disappoints."

- Alex Handyside, Wayves Magazine

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Land Acknowledgement

The Villains Theatre is honoured to create work in Kjipuktuk, at the Great Harbour, which has been and continues to be the unsurrendered, unceded territory of the Mi’kmaq people. This territory is covered by the “Treaties of Peace and Friendship” which Mi’kmaq and Wolastoqiyik (Maliseet) people first signed with the British Crown in 1725. These treaties did not deal with surrender of lands and resources but in fact recognized Mi’kmaq and Wolastoqiyik (Maliseet) title and established the rules for what was to be an ongoing relationship between nations.

We acknowledge that this company is run by two individuals who are white settlers, and that settler presence in this land is a result of the systems of colonialism, gentrification, and displacement. As we reflect on how we benefit from the use of this land, we can consider: what are we doing to reconcile our shared history, in order to ensure justice and equity?

We are all treaty people. By learning about the treaties that we are a part of, we can take action to ensure that we and our governments abide by and respect these treaties.

The Villains also recognize that Indigenous and Black & African Nova Scotian artists are underrepresented in the Canadian theatre community. We strive to eliminate oppressive practices and to critically examine settler colonialism within our institutional structure.

We are grateful to be able to live, work, play, and create on this land. 


The Villains Theatre is mandated to:

  • Create new theatrical work
  • Develop and present our productions in Kjipuktuk/Halifax
  • Collaborate with artists across all levels of experience 
  • Be an active and engaged member of our community
  • Provide safe and accessible spaces for our teams and audiences
  • Look for opportunities to tour our work nationally and internationally
  • Produce accessible events and community outreach activities 
  • Listen to feedback and learn from our mistakes
  • Explore ways to develop professionally, both as artists and as a company


We value:

  • Artistic collaboration that fosters curiosity, respect, and innovation
  • Creating theatre that navigates our shared human experiences 
  • Presenting work in our community and beyond
  • Communicating clearly with each other and with the world
  • Accessible spaces where everyone feels welcome
  • Engaging with our peers, audiences, and mentors
  • Developing sustainable practices, both artistically and administratively
  • Creating work that is thoughtful in content and equitable in process, addressing historical injustices through our actions 
  • Chips

Awards & Accolades

MERRITT AWARD NOMINEE 2024: A Beginner's Guide to the Night Sky (Best New Play by a Nova Scotian: Colleen Arcturus MacIsaac; Outstanding Indie Production; Outstanding Score: Colleen Arcturus MacIsaac; Outstanding Performance in a Lead Role: Genevieve Steele), Rain on the Parade (Outstanding Performance in a Supporting Role: Dan Bray, Outstanding Score: Garry Williams, Outstanding Costume Design: Oliver Dorais-Fleming).
Knight of the Bat 2 (Winner: Hot Ticket Award)
EAST COAST MUSIC AWARD NOMINEE 2023: Dinostories: 3 Prehistoric Fairy Tales
(Children's Entertainer of the Year: The Villains Theatre & Bingley and the Rogues).
MERRITT AWARD NOMINEE 2023: International Waters (Best New Play by a Nova Scotian: Dan Bray), Shakespeare's Time Machine (Outstanding Projection Design: Dan Bray, Colleen MacIsaac & Anna Shepard).
HALIFAX FRINGE FESTIVAL WINNER 2022: Knight of the Bat (Winner: Hot Ticket Award), International Waters (Runner-Up: Audience Choice Award; Winner: Hot Ticket Award).
MERRITT AWARD WINNER 2022: Hänsel und Gretel in: der Garten von Edible Horrors: a Terrible Parable (Outstanding Adaptation by a Nova Scotian Playwright: Dan Bray).
MERRITT AWARD NOMINEE 2022: Hänsel und Gretel in: der Garten von Edible Horrors: a Terrible Parable (Outstanding Ensemble; Outstanding Indie Production; Outstanding Original Score: Ian McFarlane, Dan Bray & Rachel Lloyd), Observatory Mansions (Outstanding Adaptation by a Nova Scotian Playwright: Dan Bray; Outstanding Lighting Design: Vicky Williams).
MERRITT AWARD NOMINEE 2020: Fox (Outstanding Costume Design: Kaelen MacDonald), Zomblet (Outstanding New Script by a Nova Scotian Playwright: Dan Bray).
LOCAL XPRESS' BEST OF 2016: The Spanish Tragedy
Arden (Outstanding New Script by a Nova Scotian Playwright: Dan Bray), The Duchess of Malfi, (Outstanding Production by an Emerging Company; Outstanding Original Score: Tamsin Michael Robson). 
MERRITT AWARD NOMINEE 2014: The Roaring Girl (Outstanding Original Score: Jenny Trites).
MERRITT AWARD NOMINEE 2013: The Jew of Malta (Outstanding Original Score: Garry Williams).
THE COAST'S TOP PLAYS OF 2014: Gallathea "Sometimes a play just makes your heart sing, and this 16th-century script did that for me. It was beautifully staged and filled with memorable, quirky performances. It conveyed a simple but important message: love is love."
THE COAST'S TOP PLAYS OF 2013: The Roaring Girl "An original take on a 17th century comedy with original music and a feminist bent? Yes please!"
THE COAST'S TOP PLAY OF 2012: Kill Shakespeare "This was a unique theatre experience...[an] engaging storyline coupled with an intriguing format"