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Meet the Team.

Photo of Lianna Makuch

Lianna Makuch

co-Artistic Director

Lianna Makuch (she/her) is a second-generation Ukrainian Canadian theatre artist. She is an award-winning playwright, director, performer, and a graduate of the BFA Acting Program at the University of Alberta. She is the playwright and principal performer in Barvinok , which has garnered her awards and recognition from across the country and in Ukraine. She is also the 2020 REACH Grant recipient from the Shevchenko Foundation/Ihnatowycz Family Foundation, which is supporting her as she develops this story into a feature length screenplay.

Lianna was the first Canadian artist-in-residence with the IZOLYATSIA Cultural Institute in Kyiv, Ukraine in February 2020, where she began the development of Alina. She has continued developing the play as part of the Punctuate! Playwrights' Unit and with the Citadel Theatre’s Collider Festival. Alina premiered in Edmonton in Spring 2022, and was shortlisted for the Alberta Playwrighting Award and nominated for Edmonton’s Sterling Awards for Outstanding New Play. She was recently Assistant Director for Jane Eyre and A Christmas Carol at the Citadel Theatre, and director of First Métis Man of Odesa by Matthew MacKenzie and Mariya Khomutova on its 2023 National Tour, for which she received Toronto’s Dora
Award for Outstanding Direction (Independent Theatre).

Through her artistic work, Lianna has found passion for activism. Linda Duncan, former NDP MP for Edmonton-Strathcona, cited Lianna’s play Barvinok during a debate about Operation Unifier in the House of Commons, Canada’s mission in Ukraine, which she called “the most power presentation she has seen about the long history of travesties that Ukraine has suffered.” Lianna is a founding member of Canadians in Support of Ukrainian Political Prisoners (CSUPP), and was an integral part of creating and circulating a petition calling upon the House of Commons to demand the release of Ukrainian political prisoners. Lianna was also a key leader in fundraising for the Ukraine-based NGO “Our Children,” a group which fundraises for families of political prisoners in Crimea, and for Ukrainian veterans since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine. 

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Patrick Lundeen

co-Artistic Director

Patrick Lundeen (he/him) is a graduate of the National Theatre School of Canada’s Acting Program and the Citadel/Banff Professional Development Program. He is a community-minded theatre creator, performer and arts producer dedicated to working primarily in the arts with a focus on theatre and the development and presentation of new artistic projects.  He has been on the producing team for dozens of events either as part of festivals or stand alone presentations, and has enjoyed collaborating with artists of different disciplines such as musicians, filmmakers, comedians, and visual artists.

He is a co-founder of Edmonton’s Common Ground Arts Society and managed the historic Avenue Theatre on Edmonton’s 118th Avenue. Patrick helped transform the venue into a functional multi-disiciplinary arts venue and community space. Until 2016 Patrick was a key artistic producer with Common Ground serving for periods of time as the Artistic Director, a board member, and Executive Director during the initial years of the Found Festival. 

From 2012 - 2017 he worked at the Citadel Theatre as an actor, teacher, and Associate Director of Outreach and Education. Patrick has also performed with Shakespeare in the Park, Workshop West Theatre, Punctuate! Theatre and Pyretic Productions. Patrick is also a film artist, working as an actor and assistant director on several local feature films. Patrick is now the Co-Artistic Director of Pyretic Productions, working with playwrights to develop new and important productions.

Director - STRIFE by Matthew MacKenzie - Punctuate! Theatre

Pyretic Productions Directing Credits: Barvinok, Alina, Michael Mysterious, Blood of Our Soil, The Other, The Particulars.

Select Directing Credits: 
PETER PAN (BAD HATS Theatre’s Musical Adaptation) - Citadel Theatre Musical Theatre Young Company.
EXPOSURE - Victoria School of the Performing Arts 
STRIFE (workshop production) - Common Ground Arts Society 

Assistant Directing: Bears, The Particulars (Punctuate! Theatre), The Situation We Find Ourselves In Is This (Punctuate! Theatre/ ReWork Productions), Vigilante (Catalyst Theatre).

Photo of Matthew MacKenzie

Matthew MacKenzie

Artistic Associate

Matthew MacKenzie is a multi-award-winning Métis playwright from Edmonton. Artistic Director of Punctuate! Theatre, Matthew is the founder and an Artistic Associate with Pyretic Productions, the current Baillie Artistic Fellow at Toronto’s Soulpepper Theatre, Playwright-In-Residence at the University of Toronto Mississauga and Canadian Liaison of the Liberian Dance Troupe. Most recently, Matthew has co-written with his wife Mariya Khomutova a 3-time Dora Award winning play titled First Métis Man of Odesa, which has toured across Canada.

In 2018, Bears won the Carol Bolt National Playwriting Award, was named co-winner of the Toronto Theatre Critics Award for Best New Cana-dian Play and won a Dora Award for Outstanding New Play. Previous Writing Cred-its: First Métis Man Of Odesa (Factory Theatre); The Situation We Find Ourselves In Is This (reWork Productions/Punctuate! Theatre); The Particulars (Punctuate! Thea-tre); After The Fire (Punctuate!Theatre); Curse Of The Pathological Palaeontologists (Punctuate! Theatre); The Other (Punctuate! Theatre); Tick (Carousel Players); SIA (Pyretic Productions). Previous Directing Credits: The Particulars (Punctuate! Thea-tre); Minosis Gathers Hope (Alberta Aboriginal Performing Arts/Punctuate! Theatre.

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Stephanie Bahniuk

Artistic Associate, Production Designer

Stephanie Bahniuk is a set, lighting and costume designer from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. She recently graduated with her Master of Fine Arts in Design at Yale School of Drama in New Haven, Connecticut.

Stephanie previously studied at the University of Alberta in the Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre Design program where she earned her degree with distinction in the Spring of 2015. After completing her studies, Stephanie began a freelance career that resulted in many exciting projects both locally and beyond. She was awarded the 2017 Elizabeth Sterling Haynes Award for Outstanding Set Design for her work on Stupid Fucking Bird (Edmonton Actors Theatre). She was also nominated in the Outstanding Artistic Achievement, Theatre for Young Audiences category that year for her lighting and set design of Alberta Opera's Hansel and Gretel.

Stephanie had the opportunity spend three seasons at Williamstown Theatre Festival in Massachusetts. During her last summer there, she took on the role of Lead Assistant Costume Designer and assisted Jane Greenwood. In addition to her assistant work, Stephanie also designed multiple Fellowship Plays and Musicals.

Stephanie began her theatre career as a dancer and was a member of the Ukrainian Shumka Dancers for seven years. She toured both locally and internationally with the company before her retirement. In February of 2018, Stephanie was named one of Alberta Council for the Ukrainian Arts' Top 30 Under 30 Artists for her work within the Edmonton community.

During her time at Yale, Stephanie designed over twelve Yale Cabaret and Verano Summer Cabaret productions as a set, lighting and costume designer. She also had the pleasure of designing costumes for Aneesha Kudtarkar’s directing thesis of Trouble in Mind as well as Jeremy O. Harris’ thesis production of YELL: a documentary of my time here. Stephanie also had the opportunity to collaborate with Laurie Woolery and Mary Kathryn Nagle to design the costumes for the East Coast premiere of Manahatta for which her work received critical acclaim. She was awarded the Jay Keene and Jean Griffin Keene Prize in Costume Design to recognize her work during her time at Yale.

Stephanie is currently working on the production design for world premiere of Michael Mysterious and Alina with Pyretic Productions. She would have spent her summer as the Assistant Costume Shop Manager for Williamstown Theatre Festival but the season was cancelled due to the pandemic. She is also a member of the costume team for Netflix’s POSE.

Stephanie currently lives in Brooklyn, NY with her cat, Mr. George Pumpkins.