Image credit: Bunker Theatre, London UK

SKIN A CAT by Isley Lynn

7PM – 8:30PM  March 18

Every teenager thinks they’re the only one not having sex. But for Alana, it may well be true. But every time she gets close to doing it something just seems to get in the way… Soon she can’t help wondering: Is it this tricky for everyone else? Because no one ever said it was going to be this complicated.

With a kaleidoscope of off-kilter characters, Skin A Cat follows Alana on an awkward sexual odyssey: from getting her first period at nine years old and freaking out her frantic mother, to watching bad porn at a house party with her best friend’s boyfriend, to a painful examination by an overly cheery gynaecologist – all in the pursuit of losing her virginity and finally becoming a woman. Whatever that means…

“We are so excited to have the opportunity to present a reading of Isley Lynn’s piece; to explore the staging of intimacy in a digital context, to discuss the themes of consent and sexual health that the piece explores, and to examine how the piece resonates in a Canadian context.”

Please note: This piece contains mature content and themes, including sexual content and strong language. Recommended for ages 16+.

Director: Rebecca Ballarin
Intimacy Director: Leslie McBay

Rebecca Ostroff: Alana
Liam Lynch: Simon, Kevin, Nathaniel, Peter, Johnny, Mark, Gerry
Neta J. Rose: Mother, Jess, Sally, Doctor, Waitress, Psychiatrist

Skin a Cat is presented by special arrangement with Dramatists Play Service, Inc., New York. This production will be followed by a panel discussion – Vaginismus and The Path To Healing.

All events require a Femme Folks Fest Pass. If you are able during these unprecedented times, we kindly suggest a donation of $50.
All Femme Folks Fest donations will be directed to local artists.

Rebecca Ballarin is a theatre director and producer from Peterborough Ontario, currently based in Toronto. In addition to her training at U of T, she has completed directing workshops with a number of prominent Canadian directors, including Kim Collier, Laurel Green, and Jackie Maxwell. Recent credits include: As Director – Pearle Harbour’s Agit-Pop! (Pearle Harbour),  Hedwig and the Angry Inch7 Stories (Hart House Theatre),  O (United Solo Festival),  291 (Parados Festival); As Assistant Director –  The Flick (Outside the March & Crow’s Theatre),  Pearle Harbour’s Chautauqua (Pearle Harbour), The  Haunting of Hungerford House (Tweed & Company).

Rebecca is the Artistic Producer of Pearle Harbour (a company that presents the theatrical work of Toronto-based drag queen Pearle Harbour), and Tweed & Company Theatre.

Rebecca is a Toronto-based actor, playwright and producer. Recent credits include, as playwright: In Her Madim (Ergo Pink Fest, 2021), Love Multiplies (Driftwood Theatre, 2020), as writer/performer: Stella (Scripted Toronto Festival, 2019). Her newest play Camp Halo is currently in development with the support of the Toronto Arts Council and the Ontario Arts Council. Her personal essays and other writing have been published in a variety of publications, including The Globe And Mail and Niv Magazine. She is also a community organizer at Tight Lipped, a storytelling podcast and advocacy group dedicated to breaking the silence surrounding vulvovaginal and pelvic pain conditions. She is very passionate about using art to raise awareness and eliminate stigma surrounding sexual dysfunction and sexual pain, and she is thrilled to be presenting Skin A Cat as part of Femme Folks Fest!

Liam is an actor and musician, with years of experience as either and both. He graduated from Sheridan College’s Honours Bachelor of Music Theatre Performance program in 2018. Since then Liam has dabbled in many fields across the province, with some favourite projects including Antony and Cleopatra, The Winter’s Tale, and Cyrano (St. Lawrence Shakespeare Festival), The Glass Menagerie (for Theatre on the Ridge), D-Day in 14 Stories (for YAP Films/History Channel), and his graduating class production of Into the Woods (for Theatre Sheridan). He has continued his learning in Toronto through masterclasses and workshops with Soulpepper, Shakespeare BASH’d, and Jane Moffat. In March of 2020, Liam co-founded Theatre Foolscap, a new Toronto-based theatre company dedicated to providing space for emerging artists to share their work and ideas. This spring, Liam is hitting the books again at Queen’s University in their Bachelor of Education program, with a specialization in Artists in Community Education. @mrliamlynch

Neta J. Rose (they/them) is a proud Ashkenazi Jewish queer non-binary redheaded tomboy-femme geek. They are an actor, visual artist, poet, and theatre creator based in Toronto/Tkaronto, and having worked in Canada and the UK. Neta is a founding member of Create! Youth Theatre, in Scotland, now entering its 12th year. On this side of the pond, they have toured Ontario researching, creating, and performing site-specific community-engaged multimedia works and producing documentaries, including “The Cyprus Project”, in partnership with Driftwood Theatre, as part of their tenure with FiXT POiNT Arts & Media. Prior to COVID, Neta was seen on Ottawa stages as Vicky in Darrah Teitel’s The Omnibus Bill, and Señora Polichinela in Odyssey Theatre’s The Bonds of InterestFor the past 3 years Neta’s creative stepchild has been Henry G20: an ambitious new play by Christine Brubaker, set in Toronto during the G20 protests and mass arrests of 2010. Neta produced the project in its early and mid-development, and will be part of the world premiere cast when Henry G20 makes its debut this summer. Find more of Neta’s work at, and on Instagram at @neta.j.rose, where you can find their most recent artworks and poetry readings.

Leslie McBay is a performer, producer, and intimacy director. Favourite performer credits include Orphan Black (BBC America/Space), Mary Kills People (Global/Lifetime), Romeo and (her) Juliet (Headstrong Collective/Urban Bard), and The Two Gentlewomen of Verona (Dauntless City Theatre). Recent intimacy direction credits include All’s Well That Ends Well (Dauntless City Theatre), Above & Beyond (Toronto Fringe), assisting on Dancing Under a Blanket (Unwrap Theatre), Ill Met By Moonlight (Pointed Cap Playhouse) and Girl in the Machine (Seven Siblings Theatre). Leslie completed the Intimacy Choreography Pedagogy Intensive with Intimacy Directors International in spring 2019, and is completing her final level of certification with Intimacy Directors & Coordinators (IDC). She wants you to know that “No, but” is the new “Yes, and” and that your boundaries are important. Leslie is invested in changing the culture in our rehearsal spaces by teaching workshops, advocating for actors, and building empowering choreography. Get in touch at