Discover the Innu with Naomi Fontaine

Discover the Innu with Naomi Fontaine


For the first time in her life, the author Naomi Fontaine will take to the stage at a theater at Duceppe's, where her novel Manikanetish was adapted for the stage.

“I am the narrator, explains the Innu. This is an addition that was not originally planned, because I admit that I do not want to be an actress. But it is my story and it touches me deeply to present it. 

The one who is used to speaking in front of the public at conferences notes that learning a text by heart is a new challenge, as is conveying emotions. However, this is facilitated because the story of this production is drawn from her own life.

“It's self-fiction,” she mentions. It tells the story of students at Manikanetish Secondary School in Uashat, where I took my first steps in teaching about ten years ago. »

She points out that the adaptation made with Julie-Anne Ranger-Beauregard is very “glued to the novel”. The text addresses his difficulty in acclimatizing as a teacher, as well as those of young people who must go through life with strength and courage.

“We show our modernity and our culture on stage, mentions- she. People who are not indigenous will be in contact with our world for the first time. It's a realistic piece. ”

An Indigenous Cast

This show will feature First Nations youth taking the stage for the first time. There are obviously Innus from the North Shore, where the author comes from, but also a Mi'kmaw from Gaspeg and another from Mashteuiatsh.

“ It's captivating to seeing them work together, even if they come from different regions, specifies Naomi Fontaine. They are really good! 

“Theatre is not something we are interested in in our nations, she adds. It is an object of pride that a young person from a community can play in a major Montreal institution. »

The one who is working on a fourth novel that she hopes to finish this year maintains that these young people draw on themselves to carry out this project, which is at the heart of his work.

“The play tells the story of students who continue to dream and go for it, and that is what they do on stage, she said. I want to pass on to them the courage that we have within us, the Innu, and which is inherited from our ancestors. 

Manikanetish< /strong> is presented from March 8th to April 8th at Duceppe.