A Saskatoon Indigenous theatre’s Christmas production premiered Wednesday night not on stage but in a virtual format.

Leave it to Weavers is being put on by the Gordon Tootoosis Nikaniwin Theatre.

Jennifer Dawn Bishop is the theatre’s artistic director.

She said normally a production like this one would be touring through northern communities during the Yuletide season but the COVID-19 pandemic means this is not an option this year.

“Just for the safety, we know that a lot of communities would be hesitant to bring folks and us in for the health and safety of everyone,” she said. “So, we wanted to make sure that we can deliver the show, however way we can, and this way it also gets out to a wider audience and for free.”

Leave it to Weavers focuses on the hijinks of a family who hasn’t seen each other for awhile and reunites on the “rez” for the holidays.

The performance is the product of Saskatchewan comedians Dakota Ray Hebert, Danny Knight and Ryan Moccasin.

Bishop said the pandemic has certainly presented a number of challenges in terms of the Indigenous amateur theatre company getting productions like this one off the ground.

However, she said the Gordon Tootoosis Theatre has realized the importance of getting performances out to people, any way they can, as a form of artistic diversion during these challenging times.

“For us, making sure how we can continue to deliver the art for the communities when most needed. Just helping us to adapt and rethinking how we tell our stories. Giving them something during these extra dark times.”

The show will be live-streamed Wednesday to Friday beginning at 7:30 p.m. on both Facebook and YouTube.

It will also be archived and available on the Gordon Tootoosis Theatre website for an extra week beginning Dec. 19.

For more information on how to watch Leave it to Weavers go to the Gordon Tootoosis Nikaniwin Theatre website.

(PHOTO: Courtesy Gordon Tootoosis Nikaniwin Theatre Facebook page.)