Best known for her performances on One More Time, Letterkenny and This Hour Has 22 Minutes, Nadine Bhabha has made a name for herself as an award-winning actor, writer and producer from Toronto. 

Currently appearing on the new comedy One More Time, airing on CBC, Nadine stars as a sweet and affable love interest to the main character. Last year, she earned two CSA nominations, for Best Supporting Actor and Best Writing for Sketch Comedy. With several ongoing projects under her wing, Nadine has stretched herself across the industry to become an all-rounded artist. 

We connected with Nadine to discuss her recent work, her love for the city, and taking on new roles.


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As an actor who seamlessly moves between comedies such as One More Time and dramas with Law & Order Toronto: Criminal Intent, how do you navigate these genres and do you find one more challenging or rewarding than the other?

I feel like my own life vacillates between comedy and drama all the time. I love to dip down into my big feelings especially because I grew up on theatre. Getting to go deep for dramas is always a treat for me as an actor because my tendency is to lean on comedies. Comedy is what gets me out of bed in the morning. There is a puzzle to humour, and a percussion that is a fun challenge, but comedy is always the most rewarding when it lands.

One More Time brings a unique twist to workplace comedy. Can you share any behind-the-scenes anecdotes or memorable moments from filming?

Yes! It’s a fresh twist! My scenes normally take place in the bar, but in episode five , DJ [Demers] and I are trapped in a garage for the whole episode. Firstly, this was my second day of filming, so we were still getting to know each other. Second, it was July, the garage was filled to the brim with junk, we had a full crew stuffed inside with us, and I’m no meteorologist but I can safely say that it was a billion degrees in there. So that feeling of being trapped required very little acting. That sweat you see dripping down our faces is real. 

You have dedicated your career to portraying and writing nuanced, female roles in the Canadian film industry. Which women’s voices or stories do you think we need to hear more of? 

What I wish for our industry is to see and write more flawed women of colour. I crave stories from the perspective of WOC that do not hinge on identity crisis, struggle or sticking out like a sore thumb. Instead, we can have narratives led by WOC, about anything else under the sun, and the challenges we face are baked in seamlessly to the story. We experience love, loss, heartache, wins, great joy and the depths of this mortal coil just like everyone else. I want to see us lose! Losing can be so relatable. Right now, the storylines are so polished and contained. I want to see a range of stories! We’re all different, we deserve more variety of storytelling.

Can you share your experiences as a featured player and writer on This Hour Has 22 Minutes, and how has it shaped your comedic voice?

I was so lucky to get to play with so many funny people on the longest-running comedy in Canada! I loved the challenge of scouring the news and trying to craft bite-sized sketches, satirizing our collective experiences. I started during the height of the pandemic and the 2020 US election, so it was a wild ride. I learned from veteran comedians both on and off the camera, and really got to flex my muscles in sketch but also satirical news on the desk. This Hour combined my love for a live audience with my insatiable need to make people laugh. I gained confidence as a writer there.

How do your roles inform and complement each other, and do you have a favourite aspect of taking on various identities and stories?

I think every role I’ve taken to date has captured a small part of me. Letterkenny for example, let me be my fast-talking, tough, chirpy self. My role on One More Time taps into my soft, sweet side. What I love about acting is embodying both myself at different stages in my life but also drawing from a collage of people I’ve met along the way. My mum? That’s one character’s laugh. That weird lady I met at the grocery store? That’s one character’s walk. Then once a character hits the screen, they become real and almost separate from me. It’s like birthing someone from my brain.

As a native Torontonian, how do you see the representation of Canadian talent evolving on the global stage, and what changes or improvements would you like to see in the industry? 

We’ve certainly earned our seat at the international table. Schitt’s Creek’s Emmy sweep was a good indication of that. And lest we forget, that show had clout to begin with because of stars from SCTV. Kim’s Convenience, Letterkenny, and Workin’ Moms have all had such a global impact. But I’m still seeing and hearing the same thing: no one knows what the “Canadian voice” sounds like. 

My answer to that is, there are so many facets to a Canadian voice that it will never be distilled into one thing. I want people abroad and here at home to acknowledge that we are not a monolith, and we should challenge ourselves to make TV that is the best it can be. We have so much talent here! Canadians should be watching more Canadian TV. And we should be fostering and appreciating our talent here first before the talent makes it big in the States.

Toronto plays a significant role in your work. How does the city inspire your creativity and are there elements that have influenced your storytelling? 

My god I love Toronto. I was born here, and when I die, bury me in the concrete right outside where Much Music used to be. I love how diverse the city is and how vibrant it felt to me growing up. I think we have so many amazing elements that make a great city; diversity in each neighbourhood, a smorgasbord of people, a lively food scene, theatre, film and TV, big tech industry, the lake, beaches, I could go on. But I’m also inspired by how it’s changing. We’re facing an unsustainable gentrification process and untenable change that takes away from everything I just listed as an asset. Toronto is a world-class city, and I think it deserves its moment in the sun.

Can you tease any details about your future projects or share what excites you most about the roles you’re exploring? 

I’m making my own shows. I love being a multi-hyphenate creator because I can craft my own stories. I’m meeting with other creatives who are tastemakers in the industry and partnering with other writers and producers who want to make something entertaining and meaningful. One of my shows was the Writers Guild of Canada’s script of the month. It’s a half-hour comedy called Sugar Shack, which follows a Paris-trained chef at the end of her rope who is forced to work at her mother’s sugar shack, and ends up finding a life that is much sweeter than she ever imagined possible.

Do you have any advice for aspiring creatives looking to take on many roles in the industry?  

Make your own stuff and have a sense of self. The more you make, the better you’ll get at creation, and you’ll get closer to who you are as a creative. People will give you their opinion on your work, and part of being a successful creative is knowing what serves you and what won’t. Watch stuff! The more you watch, the better taste you’ll have. Good taste and a willingness to collaborate is as important as talent.