A fugitive drag king enlists the help of a drag queen to rescue a former lover from a conversion therapy camp. The prisoners must survive the "scientist" preacher running the camp who guides them through a series of odd torturous treatments to cure the campers of their homosexuality. The traumatic experience may bring campers together, but it may also be an opportunity for a powerful politician with a secret to lock them away for good.

  • Christina Beamish
  • Jacob Holloway
  • Makram Ayache
    Key Cast
  • Jaimi Reese
    Key Cast
  • Emanuel Dubbeldam
    Key Cast
  • Owen Emblau
    Key Cast
  • Mark Singonco
    Key Cast
  • Hayley Moorhouse
    Key Cast
  • Marc Ludwig
    Key Cast
  • Marshall Vielle
    Key Cast
  • Project Type:
  • Genres:
    LGBTQ+, Queer, Musical, Dystopian future
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 40 minutes
  • Country of Origin:
  • Language:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Christina Beamish

Christina Beamish is an Edmonton-based screenwriter, filmmaker, and director. She writes and directs narrative film work with a focus on telling human stories from a LGBTQ2S+ lens. Christina was awarded with a Telus Storyhive grant as well as two AMPIA Award nominations for her short-narrative directorial debut, ‘Sunday Morning Coming Down’. Christina has had the opportunity to develop her skills while attending summer intensives at Vancouver Film School (VFS). Her work has been screened at film festivals in Canada and the United States.

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Director Statement

Nirvana is the story of two drag king and queen fugitives who set out on a rescue mission to save a former lover from a horrifying pray-away-the-gay camp before a high-ranking politician with a big secret locks them all away for good. This dystopian, psychedelic musical, set in the year 2069 in the puritanically religious Federal State of Alberta, shows how camaraderie and love is still possible in the worst of times.

The project has a confirmed lead cast including queer, indigenous, and artists of colour from Alberta’s drag community; and has received three rounds of development and pre-production funding from the Edmonton Arts Council and Alberta Motion Pictures Industry Association.

Too often stories about the LGBTQ+ community are told through the hetero-normative lens and by predominately straight writers and directors. As a Queer artist, I’m passionate about putting these stories back into the hands of our community and telling them in a way only we can. I believe that this is particularly crucial for Nirvana, which at its core is about what pushes us to thrive when the world tells us that we aren’t welcome.

I've included a one-minute clip from a project called, 'Sunday Morning, Coming Down.' This is a short narrative project that I wrote and directed in 2018. I was able to bring this story to life through the support of Telus Storyhive funding. I selected the clip for inclusion because I feel is a great representation of my filmmaking style. It was through this project that I was able to meet Jacob Holloway, Nirvana's Screenwriter, which has led to our collaboration on this project.

I would like to participate in the TIFF Filmmaker Lab to pitch Nirvana to potential funders and co-producers, develop my network as an emerging feature film director, and watch important queer Canadian and international films not easily accessible in Edmonton. My writer and I want the chance to truly elevate what we can create with this story. It would be such an honour to be able to participate. Thank you so much for considering my application!