The Adjudicators

Our Traveling Adjudicator - Trevor Smith Diggins

Trevor Smith Diggins

Trevor has been a positive force in Ontario theatres over the last five decades as an accomplished actor, director, producer, play-polisher, and workshop leader. He has earned two Best Director awards and a total of seven Best Actor awards including two from Theatre Ontario -The Elephant Man (1987) and Cosi (2003) - plus three from Western Ontario Drama League (WODL) festivals.

As an accredited member of the Theatre Ontario Talent Bank, Trevor has served as festival adjudicator for ACT-CO Festivals in the comedy (2016) and drama (2017) categories. He has also adjudicated three times for Sears Drama Festivals, and provided play-polishing workshops for numerous theatre companies in Ontario.

Trevor is a founding director of several independent theatre companies including 4thWall Productions, Downright Productions, and The Downtown Theatre Project. Notable onstage turns include Robin in The Wild Guys, Allan in Harvest, Norman in The Dresser, Ray in Little Voice, Barney in Last of the Red Hot Lovers, and Hiram in the Toronto premiere of The Normal Heart. Trevor also appeared in the Canadian premiere of Ladies' Night, the full-monty play. Directing credits include Noises Off, Calendar Girls (Best Director, Arthur Awards 2013), Shirley Valentine, Misery, Steel Magnolias, The House of Blue Leaves, Little Voice, Come Back to the 5&Dime, and Stepping Out.

Trevor has appeared in national TV spots and starred in the short feature Jason's Dad (2013 Montreal World Film Festival). He has reviewed theatre and restaurants for three newspapers, writing a weekly column in Nightlife for several years. In 2011, he stepped into the ballroom, winning the gold medal in Dancing With the Stars, a fundraiser for cancer support.

When he's not inside a theatre, Trevor provides media training, performance coaching and communication strategy for corporate and government clients.

Our Festival Adjudicator - Maja Ardal


Playwright, Director Actor, Theatre trainer

Maja Ardal has been working in theatre for forty-eight years. Her play 'The Hero of Hunter Street' was produced by 4thLine Theatre in 2016, and she is writing two new plays for 4thLIne. She created 'One Thing Leads to Another, Theatre for Babies', produced by Young People’s Theatre, and toured Canada. It received 2 Dora Awards. She wrote and performs in the hit shows You Fancy Yourself (Dora Award for performance) and The Cure for Everything (Dora nomination.) She wrote HER2 a play for 10 women, produced by Nightwood Theatre. Copies of her plays can be found through Playwrights Canada Press.

Maja adapted and directed the play Prisoner of Tehran by Marina Nemat, produced by Theatre Passe Muraille. Maja was the artistic director of Young People's Theatre Toronto during the 1990s. Her production of Whale received the Dora award for outstanding production.

She has directed across Canada including Alberta Theatre Projects, The Grand Theatre, London, Theatre NorthWest, Muskoka Summer Theatre, and The Shaw Festival. As an actor she performed at Talk is Free Theatre and 4thLine Theatre in 2018. She gives workshops in playwriting, vocal and physical theatre techniques in communities across Canada and teaches theatre creation/writing/directing to communities ie. Theatre Ontario Summer Intensive and Peel Region Community Council.

Maja has adjudicated community theatre festivals in Sault St Marie, London, (Theatre Ontario), (QUONTA) 2015, and London’s One Act play Festival in 2016.