Mad Practice

Sanity Skills for Crazy Times
Monday, May 11 at 5:30 PM PST
Online via Zoom

Mad Practice: Sanity Skills for Crazy Times is a mental health zoom meet-up hosted by comedian and certified insane person JD Derbyshire, creator and performer of last season’s hit show Certified. JD is especially equipped to deal with these times of interrupted normalcy, heightened anxiety, the never ending flip-flop between mania and depression, and the mind numbing prospect of who to trust and how to figure out what’s really going on. 

If you’re feeling crazy, or think you might be heading there, come hang out with JD in a space where humour and grief can coexist. Nothing will be solved but maybe we’ll have some good old fashioned laugh-cries or cry-laughs or laugh-laughs or cry-cries.

To RSVP, email JD here and she'll send you a Zoom invite!

“Every week is mental health week when you’re nuts. But apparently this week has been specially designated mental health week so we won’t forget about our mental health?

Anyway, Touchstone Theatre who produced my show Certified, wanted to mark the occasion of Mental Health Week with yet another wacky and wonderful and totally overwhelming Zoom meet-up opportunity. If this sounds like something you’d rather do then poke your eye out with a sharp stick, then RSVP now and decide on the day whether you want to show up or not. Who knows, maybe I won’t even be able to make it. Only moods will tell. (:’ ” 

JD Derbyshire

“I hope you are well and finding ways to cope and even moments to thrive during this unprecedented time. These days are discombobulating—we are usually in planning mode and preparing to share the visions of our artists—rehearsing and refining new and exciting creations for our audience. Currently, we are instead preparing various safe-distance options for engaging with you. We at Touchstone send our best wishes to you all in this liminal time.

I asked my friend Jan, JD Derbyshire, creator of the phenomenal Certified, if she could say a few words during Canadian Mental Health Association’s Mental Health Week. Never the slouch, JD was in the midst of prepping to host a Zoom meeting that’s sounds like it will be “just what the doctor ordered!“ JD is wise, funny, thoughtful and always a pleasure to engage with. She’s a great person to chew over a problem with and could have her own advice column. At least that’s been my experience and I am always grateful for her perspective and the opportunity for dialogue with her. Consider Zooming with her next Monday—it’s bound to impact whatever you may be wrestling with—and in the meantime—self care—be kind—y’hear!”

Roy Surette
Artistic Director


Director: Herbie Barnes
Written & Performed by: Daniel Arnold, Darrell Dennis, and Medina Hahn
Also featuring: Michelle Bardach, Lois Anderson, and Tom McBeath
Production Manager & Technical Director Mimi Abrahams
Associate Production Manager Andrew Pye
Stage Manager Yvonne Yip
Apprentice Stage Manager Diana Bartosh
Projection Designer Sammy Chien/Chimerik 似不像
Associate Projection Designer Yvonne Wallace
Sound Designer & Composer Mary Jane Paquette
Set Designer Lauchlin Johnston
Props Designer Bill Beauregarde
Lighting Designer Jill White
CostumeDesigner Carmen Thompson


Secwepemc Creative Advisors: Mayuk Manuel and Percy Casper
Outreach & Engagement Coordinator: Eugene Crain
Research & Evaluation Leader: Jennica Nichols
Emotional Support Worker: Ray Thunderchild
Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre Advisor: Susan Tatoosh

Advisory & Advocacy Council: Maxine Matilpi (RELAW: Revitalizing Indigenous Land, Air and Water), Kathleen Cunningham and Krista James (BC Law Institute), Susan Spratt (Council of Canadians), Stephen Mussell (lawyer with Mandell-Pinder), Justin B Neal (TESTIFY Indigenous Law & Arts collective), Fawn Adolph (Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre)

Local Territory Advisors: Shane Pointe, Musqueam; Agi Mathias Paul, Squamish; Charlene Aleck, Tsleil-Waututh

Photos (below): Daniel Arnold, Medina Hahn, and Darrell Dennis. Costume design by Carmen Thompson. Photos by Emily Cooper

For more about the show, read Taran Kootenhayoo's interview with the playwrights in our season brochure here!


Select plays from Jan (JD) Derbyshire include Certified, Stood, A Modern Woman’s Guide to Female Impersonation, Gloom, All In, Joke You, Funny in the Head, Me on the Map with Adrienne Wong, Dog of my Understanding, Auditions for an Embarrassed Woman, Turkey in the Woods, Ingenious Speculations with Rita Bozi and Kim Selody,The Opposite of Everything is True, and Under the Big Top. Her plays have been produced by Belfry Theatre (Victoria),Buddies in Bad Times (Toronto), and Vancouver companies Frank Theatre, Neworld Theatre, and Solo Collective, with festival presentations at FoldA (Kingston), Uno (Victoria), PuSh (Vancouver), Summerworks (Toronto), People’s Comedy Festival, Dublin International Gay Theatre Festival,and Vancouver International Children’s Festival. In 2017, JD participated in the Banff Centre Playwright’s Lab and the Playwright’s Unit at Alberta Theatre Projects with co-creator Adrienne Wong. Her fictitious memoir Mercy Gene: the man made making of a madwoman, currently awaits publication.

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