Two new Educators-In-Residence to the Health, Arts and Humanities Program

We are pleased to announce two new Educators-In-Residence to the Health, Arts and Humanities Program

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LJ Nelles brings years of professional theatre experience as an actor, director and voice teacher to her work with non-theatre professionals with whom she uses performance practice to foster self-awareness, embodied practice and effective communication. She continues to work in the theatre as a director and coach to theatre professionals and teaches voice, acting and devised theatre in professional performance training programs. LJ also has an extensive background in human simulation in medical education and assessment. She is an educator at the Reitman Centre, Mt. Sinai Hospital in the department of geriatric psychiatry. Her doctoral work uses narrative inquiry and performance as research to examine the phenomenology of performance, being with, and the embodied knowledge that is a result of practice. LJ is currently an interning psychotherapist.

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Elysse Leonard is a film educator, researcher, and coordinator of TIFF’s Reel Comfort programme. Reel Comfort is a community outreach initiative that brings monthly film screenings, facilitated discussions, and film-craft workshops to mental health units at several Toronto hospitals. In this role, she has designed film-based interprofessional education opportunities for health care students and professionals, including a six-week reflective documentary workshop offered in partnership with the Baycrest Centre for Learning, Research and Innovation in Long-Term Care. Working alongside a psychiatry resident and a senior medical student at the University of Toronto, Elysse co-curates the Cinema Medica film series. She holds an MA in Cinema Studies, with a research focus on representations of death and dying in postwar international cinema. She has written video essays for The Seventh Art and served as a reviewer for Medical Humanities. Elysse looks forward to further exploring film’s potential to cultivate empathy and reflective practice.