Evan Tlesla (Leslie) Adams, M.D.|
(1966 - living) Canada
Doctor, film actor, author<
Evan was born at Sliammon Band Reserve near Powell River, British Columbia. He is a full-scholarship alumnus of St. Michaels University School and of Lester B. Pearson College of the Pacific,both of Victoria. He stars in the Emmy-winning TV-movie Lost in the Barrens and its nominated sequel Curse of the Viking Grave. Besides numerous episodics like The Beachcombers and Black Stallion, he also appears in the feature film Toby McTeague and the Fox-TV movie Lakota Moon.
In 1988, Evan's original play Dreams of Sheep was selected as one of Canada's entries to the International Festival of Young Playwrights in Sydney, Australia. He also wrote the award-winning audio tour of the First Peoples Gallery at the Royal British Columbia Museum in Victoria. Two of his plays, Snapshots and Dirty Dog River (co-written with Marie Humber), have been presented in more than 300 communities in Canada, the United States, New Zealand - and even into Africa - since April, 1989. Snapshots was also published by Véhicule Press in the anthology "A Leap in the Dark: AIDS, Art and Contemporary Cultures".
Evan was the first President of the Healing Our Spirit BC First Nations AIDS Society, which provides prevention education for Aboriginal people in both urban and rural First Nations communities throughout BC. In 1986, Evan was selected as a "Role Model" by the National Native Alcohol and Drug Abuse Program (NNADAP). In addition to a nationally-circulated poster highlighting his accomplishments, he worked with Native youth in health promotions and life-skills workshops across the country.
Evan has kept close ties with his Coast Salish roots. His competitive and traditional styles of Native dance have taken him touring across Canada and Europe, and into collaboration with the Karen Jamieson Dance Company of Vancouver. He does Raven's Tail weaving, some of his work in this ancient style appearing in Cheryl Samuel's book Raven's Tail. In July 1990, Evan received the name "Tlesla II" by his family and band elders, the first time in fifty years that such an honour has been given. At the same time, he received the name "Kit ta ladzi", "Big Fire" from the Kwakwaka'wakw people of Alert Bay.
Evan has scripted a half-hour for the C.B.C. anthology series Four Directions called "My Father's Son" and has recently completed two other screenplays: Stonefaces for Wild Bunch Productions of Vancouver, and Seagull, co-written with Anne Cameron. His new, one-man show, "Son of Raven", has received staged readings at the Museum of Anthropology, UBC and at the XV Commonwealth Games in Victoria.
Most recently, Evan stars as Thomas Builds-The-Fire in ShadowCatcher Entertainment's Smoke Signals, written by Sherman Alexie and directed by Chris Eyre. Smoke Signals won the coveted Audience Award for best film, and the Filmmakers Trophy when it premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January, 1998.
Aside from his career in the arts, Evan has completed three years of pre-med studies at the University of British Columbia. In May 2002, he received his Medical Degree from the University of Calgary.