Photo of Dawn Jani Birley.

Dawn Jani Birley

Panelist: (Re)casting Shakespeare in Canada

Dawn Jani Birley was born in Saskatchewan to third generation Deaf family and identifies herself as culturally and linguistically Deaf. Toronto Theatre Critics Award Winner for Best Actress in a Play for her role as Horatio in Prince Hamlet, Canadian Cultural Society of the Deaf Person of the Year and Swedish Riksteatern’s Artist of the Year, Birley is a versatile actor with an uncanny ability for storytelling. Her career takes her all over the world, spanning more than fifteen years of professional experience in theatre and film. With a Master of Arts in Physical Theatre with Merit from St. Mary’s University in London, Dawn established 1S1 Theatre in 2019 with a vision for Deaf and hearing to enjoy theatre together. The mission is to create theatre at the intersections of Deaf and hearing worlds, always from a Deaf-led perspective, to push for positive change in our today’s world. Aside from acting, Dawn Jani is often summoned to give workshops/training, motivational speeches and appearances.