Anne-Marie Woods, aka Amani, is a professional actor, dancer, singer, poet, playwright and creative consultant. Born in London, England and baptized in Trinidad, she moved to Canada in the early 70s where she lived in Dartmouth, then later Halifax, Nova Scotia. She made her roots as an artist in Nova Scotia for many years, and has been making her mark in the theatre arts and spoken word scene in Toronto since December 2000, when she was a Playwright in Residence at Young People’s Theatre. A graduate of the Dalhousie Professional Actor Training Program, Anne-Marie has been making waves in the arts scene both nationally and internationally. Her extensive artistic background stems from her love for youth arts and culture. In 1997, she completed a one year internship at Freedom Theatre in Philadelphia, PA, one of the oldest Black Theatres in Pennsylvania. While there, she underwent teacher training working with well known director Walter Dallas and was part of the August Wilson Performance Class. Anne-Marie Woods ran her own young company called The Imani Women’s Artistic Project while in Nova Scotia, and she was the director of countless youth and arts oriented projects. She has been in such theatre productions as Whylah Falls, Adventures of a Black Girl in Search of God, Afrika, Solo, Consecrated Ground, and The Vagina Monologues. She was the first ever African Canadian to perform at the prestigious National Black Theatre Festival in North Carolina in 2001, with her one-woman show Waiting To Explode. This performance earned her a mention in the New York Arts Paper, Backstage. She received a Bob Marley Day Award, from Mayor David Millar for her outstanding contributions to youth and community development through arts education and outreach. Her one-woman shows have been declared a hit at the Atlantic Fringe Festival many times and her show True Confessions was part of the Rock Paper Sistaz festival and she has also performed her one-woman shows at Harbourfront Centre as part of the Omiala Festival, and the East Coast Festival. She has been teaching theatre for various school boards in Canada and for key organizations for many years, and in 2007, she taught acting, improv and voice work to adults and youth at the Nu Century Arts Program in Birmingham, England. In 2010, she received a Canada Council Grant and an OAC grant to travel and teach theatre and spoken word as outreach with a youth spoken word program (Wordsmiths) at the University of the West Indies Department of Creative and Festival Arts where she was mentored by Artistic Director Marvin George. Known for being able to not only teach theatre arts but also for her work of fusing spoken word, movement and theatre, and using this as a tool to reach young people—she developed the WORD UP!!! Spoken Word/Theatre Youth Outreach Program and continues to perform/present for countless schools and organizations. She is planning on launching a Word Up Weekend Festival within the next few years, putting out a new CD, and of course getting her work published. For more information please check out her website imanicreativeconsulting.com or imaniartsbiz.com