Home 9 Project 9 Starwalker

Company Credits
Book/Music/Lyrics and Directed by Corey Payette
Choreography by Ralph Escamillan
Music Direction by Sean Bayntun

Dillan Chiblow as Starwalker
Stewart Adam McKensy as Mother
Jeffrey Follis as Levi
Featuring: Jesse Alvarez, Ryan Maschke, Connor Parnall, Ralph Escamillan, and August Elzinga

Creative Team
Set Design: Anna Shearing
Costume Design: Alaia Hamer
Stage Management: Melanie Thompson
Lighting Design: Jonathan Kim
Sound Design: Bradley Danyluk
Producer: Fabian Aspell Morales
Associate Choreographer: Ross Wirtanen
Production Manager/Technical Director: Matthew Oviatt
Fight Director: Mike Kovac
Intimacy Director: Lisa Goebel
Head of Wardrobe: Tiffany Bishop
Head of Props: Kaleigh Funnell
Assistant Stage Manager: Sara Allison
Apprentice Stage Manager: Jennifer Wilson
Assistant Production Manager/Technical Director: Blake Kriedemann
Commissioned by: The Musical Stage Company and The Aubrey & Marla Dan Fund for New Musicals

Content Warning

The story follows Starwalker, an Indigi-Queer Two-Spirit drag queen learning the ropes of the Drag community when their world is thrown upside down. When Starwalker is introduced to Drag at the House of Borealis, their whole world changes, introducing them to a home they never knew they needed, creating a new persona that blends their grounded cultural spirit with drag performance, resulting in an empowering and celebratory experience that only tearing down the patriarchy can provide. It is a love story, facing issues of identity, strength, and Resilience.

A genre-bending, groundbreaking stage musical

– John Jane, reviewVancouver

Cast Bios

Corey Payette | Book/Music/Lyrics & Director

Corey Payette is an interdisciplinary storyteller, writer, composer, and director in theatre and film. He is a member of the Mattagami First Nations, with French Canadian and Irish ancestry. Known for his deeply moving, large-scale original musical creations, Payette’s work challenges the public’s notion of what musicals can be, inserting Indigenous perspectives and narratives into mainstream spaces, igniting conversations that inspire social change. Payette’s work explores themes of colonization, Indigenous language revitalization, cultural healing, reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples, and the complexity of historic and contemporary Indigenous experiences across music, theatre, and film. Payette’s deeply collaborative, multi-disciplinary, and community engaged creation process has been integral in shining a light on stories that have gone unheard for generations. In 2021, Payette received the inaugural BC Reconciliation Award from The Honourable Janet Austin, Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia, created to honour those who have demonstrated exceptional leadership, integrity, respect, and commitment to furthering Reconciliation with Indigenous peoples in the province of British Columbia. He is the Artistic Director of Urban Ink, past Artist-in-Residence with National Arts Centre [NAC] English Theatre, and is the founder of Raven Theatre. His musicals Children of God, Les Filles du Roi, Sedna, and Starwalker have won multiple awards and have toured extensively across Canada. He was awarded the John Hirsch Prize from the Canada Council, Jessie Awards for Composition and Direction, and Ovation Awards for Best New Musical and Outstanding Direction.

Sean Bayntun | Music Director

Sean made his orchestral debut at 16 with the White Rock Symphony, and at 18 performed as a soloist with the VSO. He graduated from UBC with a BMus before attending Rice University (Houston) on full scholarship studying with Dr. Jon Kimura Parker. With Dr. Parker’s encouragement to explore genres and performance beyond classical piano. Returning to Vancouver in 2006, Sean joined a pop/rock band as a keyboardist/writer and began freelancing as a session and performance musician. He’s played in dozens of bands and is currently an active member of Leisure Club and DAñSE. In 2009, he music directed Songs for a New World (Not Another Musical Co-op), and the following year was the MD for PSP’s production of Bat Boy. As an MD, his many nominations and awards include The Wild Party (Pint-Size Tall), The Light in the Piazza and Herringbone (PSP). Recent work includes The Girl Next Door (Painted Fern) and Anne of Green Gables (Gateway).

Ralph Escamillan | Choreographer / Ensemble

Ralph Escamillan is a Philippine diasporic performance artist, dancer, choreographer and community leader based in Vancouver, BC. He is a founder of two non profits: FakeKnot – where he explores intersectionality in his artistic practices, and VanVogueJam – a Ballroom organization creating space for QTBIPOC folks to learn about Vogue and Ballroom Culture. Hes worked and toured for a variety of dance companies, danced and choreographed for film and tv, and continues to walk Balls internationally under the alias Posh Gvaslia Basquiat. Starwalker is Ralph’s first Choreographic Musical Choreographic Debut. For more please visit

Anna Shearing | Set Designer

Anna Shearing is a Production and Set Designer working out of Vancouver, Canada. She graduated with Honours from Dalhousie University’s Set Design and Technical Theatre program. In 2019 while finishing off her degree she was hired as assistant curator for the Canadian student exhibition at the Prague Quadrennial. Her degree also afforded her the opportunity to intern in opera designer Michael Levine’s studio. There she had the opportunity to assist while he was working on the Bregenz Festival’s production of Madame Butterfly. In 2020 she began working in film and since then has done production design for several projects; including Urban Ink’s Les Filles du Roi, Kit Redstone and Arran Shearing’s film King Baby, Crazy 8’s Cuello, and as a set designer for Trey Fanjoy’s Honey Girls. In her private life, Anna has long been a visual artist, working predominantly in portraiture.