Marie Clements


Marie Clements (Métis/Dene) is the librettist for Missing, a chamber opera with music by Brian Current, co-commissioned and co-produced by City Opera Vancouver and Pacific Opera Victoria. The world première production of Missing was staged in November 2017, in Vancouver and Victoria. Missing will be remounted in November 2019 in Victoria, Vancouver, Regina & Prince George.

Marie is an award-winning writer, director and producer who has worked to ignite her brand of independent story-making to a variety of mediums including film, TV, radio, new media and live performance.

Marie recently completed the feature musical documentary The Road Forward with The National Film Board which premièred at The Hot Docs Film Film Festival in Spring 2017, and the docudrama Number 14 which won Best Public Service Film at The American Indian Film Festival 2015. She is working on a slate of projects including Red Snow, which earned her the WIDC Feature Film Award, Smoke(d) a dramatic tv series developed with APTN, and a documentary series titled Looking at Edward Curtis, developed with Knowledge Network.

Clements worked as a co-writer for the dramatic episodes of 1491, and directed five episodes of Moosemeat and Marmalade. Her short works as a writer/director include Pilgrims, which was screened at The Cannes International Film Festival and premiered at The Toronto International Film Festival in 2013, following screenings at The Vancouver International Film Festival, the Whistler Film Festival, The American Indian Film Festival and The ImagineNATIVE Film Festival, where it won the Shaw Media Award.

Her short documentary The Language of Love, commissioned by The Winnipeg Aboriginal Film Festival, was screened as a part of Hot Doc’s International Film Festival and selected to screen with ImagineNATIVE Presents: Canadian Indigenous Shorts on Air Canada in 2013, garnering an Honorable Mention at the 2012 Imaginative Film Festival.

Her music video The Road Forward has been screened at over thirteen film festivals, winning Best Music Video at The American Indian Film Festival and The Southeastern Film Festival in 2010. In live performance, her full-length multi-media musical The Road Forward sold out at the 2015 Push International Performance FestivalMarie is President of her new media company MCM and Artistic Director of red diva projects. Marie is an alumna of Women In the Director’s Chair (WIDC) in Banff.

In the hands of librettist Marie Clements … words become as powerful as arrows, each one piercing deep-seated emotions, from guilt, sorrow and enlightenment among white viewers to – for Indigenous members of the audience – grief and a sense of vindication from having the suffering of one’s community acknowledged and honoured in a public setting…

Missing is an extraordinarily moving and thought-provoking work, and a milestone for the opera world. It has taken a painful and horrifying topic and rendered it into accessible art. Ultimately, its message is a universal one: open our eyes and hearts to each other’s pain. By doing so, humanity has a chance for healing and redemption. Missing begins this healing journey in a magnificent mélange of singing, acting and music that, one hopes, will be seen by audiences across Canada and the world.

Roberta Staley, The Whole Note. Review of Missing, City Opera Vancouver / Pacific Opera Victoria, 2017.


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