Friday, 29 October 2010

7 Days In Ontario Theatre

What's Happening, Here And Abroad
  • Congratulations to Michael Wheeler whose blog post "Why Stephen Harper Will Continue To Attack The Arts" was voted "Best Post" at the 2010 Canadian Blog Awards.  I was away when it was published originally, so I never linked to it then, but it is certainly deserving recognition of a must-read.
  • And because no accomplishment must go unrewarded: the architects of the Rose Theatre in Brampton were honoured with one of the 2010 North American Copper in Architecture Awards; presumably they get a shiny trophy for that
New And Upcoming on The Bulletin Board
  • Application deadline for Canadian Stage's Artist Educators in Communities and Schools Training Initiative" is November 1
  • Toronto Fringe's OAC Creators Reserve deadline is November 5
  • 4th Line Theatre in Millbrook has launched their 2010 workshop series: Playwriting with Alex Poch-Golden; Adult Acting with Diana Reis; and Youth Acting with Lisa Marie DiLiberto; running November 13 to 14
  • Catherine Banks is the next featured playwright in the Playwrights Guild of Canada "Meaningful Words" series: November 24 at TheatreBooks
Check out these items, and many more on The Bulletin Board on the Theatre Ontario website

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Upcoming Emerging Actor and Self-Producing Workshops at Theatre Ontario

Theatre Ontario is pleased to announce that we've scheduled our next "Getting Started For Actors" and "Self Start: The Basics Of Producing" workshops.

"Getting Started" will be on November 17, from 2pm to 4pm; "Self-Start" will be on December 1, from 2pm to 4pm.

Getting Started sessions are for actors beginning their professional careers. In this two-hour workshop, Tim Chapman, Professional Theatre Coordinator answers the most frequently asked questions about the business of acting. Find out about the realities of showbiz, pictures and resumes, Equity and ACTRA, Agents and casting directors, Auditioning do's and don'ts, and maintaining and improving your acting skills.  Getting Started is a free workshop, available to members of Theatre Ontario only. For more information, including how to register, please visit Getting Started For Actors on the Theatre Ontario website.

Self-Start: If you want to do a show but have never produced before, and if you want to know what questions to ask first, this session is for you!  Self-Start is a practical seminar facilitated by Tim Chapman, Professional Theatre Coordinator.  This workshop is designed for individuals thinking of starting a theatre company or producing a show; and gives you the opportunity to ask questions and try out ideas, discover the questions you need to ask and answer, learn to organize your thinking and planning, work on scheduling and budget considerations, and learn about available resources and services.  It's free for Theatre Ontario members, and $25 for non-members.  For more information, including how to register, please visit Self-Start: The Basics Of Producing on the Theatre Ontario website.

Monday, 25 October 2010

ONstage Openings for the week of October 25

Halloween is next weekend; not surprisingly, there's a distinctly scary theme to this week's openings:

In Eastern Ontario:
October 29, Night Of The Living Dead at King's Town Players in Kingston
October 30, Prints Of Darkness at Mississippi Mudds of Carleton Place

In South Central Ontario:
October 29, Willy Wonka at Clearview Community Theatre in Barrie

In Southwestern Ontario:
October 27, Richard O'Brien's The Rocky Horror Picture Show at Oh Canada Eh? Productions in Niagara Falls
October 29, Forbidden Broadway at Theatre Sarnia
October 30, Creepy Cabaret at Theatre Intrigue Society in Windsor

In Toronto:
October 28, The Woman In Black at East Side Players
October 30, Night Of Dread at Clay And Paper Theatre

For all the theatre current playing across Ontario, or for information for theatres on how to add/update your listing, visit the ONstage show listings on the Theatre Ontario website.

Friday, 22 October 2010

7 Days In Ontario Theatre

What's Happening Here
And Abroad
New and Upcoming on The Bulletin Board
  • Deadline to apply for Tarragon Theatre's Young Directors Project (for high school student directors looking to help develop new student-written works) is October 29
  • The Artists Health Centre in Toronto is running a clinic on November 1: "Coming Into Alignment - Posture, pain, and optimal health" focusing on back pain, TO members get a 20% discount
  • OAC Theatre Creators Reserve deadline at Great Canadian Theatre Company in Ottawa is December 1
  • Canadian Stage has issued a Call for Submissions for the 2011 Festival of Ideas and Creation for artists who are currently working on new projects of any length and in early phases of development, which incorporate cross-disciplinary practice; deadline is December 1
Check out these items, and many more on The Bulletin Board on the Theatre Ontario website
    • Derek Ritschel is the new Artistic Director of Lighthouse Festival Theatre in Port Dover
    • Stephanie MacMillan is the new General Manager of 4th Line Theatre in Millbrook; Simone Georges is now the theatre's Director of Development
    • Sheila Sky is the new Director of Membership Services and Communications of the Associated Designers of Canada

    Wednesday, 20 October 2010

    October E-Newsletter Is Now Online

    Remember that you can also catch up on your news from Theatre Ontario in our comprehensive monthly e-newsletter Theatre Ontario Presents...

    The October issue of our e-newsletter is now available online

    Tuesday, 19 October 2010

    The "A" Word

    by Dennis Johnson, Community Theatre Coordinator

    One day last February while watching the Winter Olympics on television, I happened to tune in to an interview with the Canadian Bobsleigh team.  They were being asked about their financial support and how much time they had to commit to their sport. One of the team pointed out what was to him, obvious: “We’re amateur professionals.”  What does that mean?  Are they part-time athletes?  Is it a reflection on their financial status and the fact that they are self-financed? Are they, like Rodney Dangerfield, not getting no respect?

    “Amateur professionals.”  What a great concept!  I wonder if we in community theatre might not say the same thing of ourselves.  ‘Professionalism’ is a word we hear a lot.  Community theatres strive to shed their work of the ‘amateur’ epithet.  And indeed, at its best, the quality of local productions often exceeds some so-called ‘professional’ work.  But we’re unpaid. So maybe we too are amateur professionals.

    Monday, 18 October 2010

    ONstage Openings for the week of October 18

    This is one of those weeks when there's something opening in every region of the province.  What theatre are you going to see this week?

    In Toronto:
    October 18: Romeo And Juliet at Shakespeare In Action
    October 19: A Raisin In The Sun at Soulpepper
    October 20: Unity (1918) at Ryerson Theatre School
    October 21: The Lion In Winter at Amicus Productions
    October 21: The Andersen Project at Canadian Stage
    October 21: Death Of A Salesman at Soulpepper
    October 21: The Middle Place at Theatre Passe Muraille
    October 23: Key Party at Bad Dog Theatre Company

    In Central Ontario:
    October 22: Having Hope At Home at Northumberland Players (Cobourg)

    In Ottawa and Eastern Ontario:
    October 19: Romeo And Juliet at the National Arts Centre, English Theatre (Ottawa)
    October 19: Honeymoon At Graveside Manor at Ottawa Little Theatre
    October 21: Pyreness at Domino Theatre (Kingston)

    In Northeastern Ontario:
    October 20: All My Sons at Sault Theatre Workshop (Sault Ste. Marie)

    In Northwestern Ontario:
    October 21: Theatre Newfoundland Labrador's production of Tempting Providence at Magnus Theatre (Thunder Bay)

    In South Central Ontario:
    October 21: Who's Under Where? at Peel Panto Players (Brampton)

    In Southwestern Ontario:
    October 19: Side By Side By Sondheim at The Grand Theatre (London)
    October 22: I'll Be Back Before Midnight at London Community Players

    For all the theatre current playing across Ontario, or for information for theatres on how to add/update your listing, visit the ONstage show listings on the Theatre Ontario website.

    Friday, 15 October 2010

    7 Days In Ontario Theatre

    It's actually been 63 days since we've published "7 Days".  We've been under renovation...apologies for the mess.

    What's Happening?
    • Tony Adams, Artistic Director of Halcyon Theatre (Chicago) wrote a great piece about theatre institutions failing artists and how it all starts  (he also beat me in our head-to-head match-up last weekend in the 2am Theatre Fantasy Football league, but I don't hold that against him)
    • Meanwhile, David Nairn, Artistic Director of Theatre Orangeville wrote about the blessings that come from doing work that you love
    • And on the "do" and "don't do" list for artists who have strong feelings about their critics: this is a "don't do"
    • Praxis Theatre has been nominated for the 2010 Canadian Blog Awards.  Show your support with three simple clicks
    New Postings and Upcoming On The Bulletin Board:
    • Today is the deadline for the Ottawa Little Theatre One-Act Playwriting Competition
    • Deadline to apply for Acting Up Stage Company's auditions in Toronto for "One Song Glory" is October 20 (this is a YTTP-funded project)
    • Toronto's Canadian Stage Company is inviting applications for their "Artist Educators in Communities and School Training Initiative", deadline is November 1
    Check out these items, and many more on The Bulletin Board on the Theatre Ontario website

    • To Mallory Gilbert, winner of the Toronto Arts Foundation's William Kilbourn Award for the Celebration of Toronto's Cultural Life.  Mallory Gilbert joined Tarragon Theatre in 1972, serving as General Manager from 1978-2006, and is currently an arts consultant for small to mid-size theatre companies.  She served on the board of PACT for over 20 years and was its President from 1989-1993.  One of the founders of Creative Trust in 1998, she is currently the President.  She has received many awards in recognition of her achievements and contributions to Canadian theatre and in 2006, Tarragon Theatre and PACT jointly created an annual award in her honour – The Mallory Gilbert Leadership Award.  She was made a Member of the Order of Canada in 2007.
    • To BMO Financial Group, winner of the Toronto Arts Foundation's Arts & Business Award.  BMO Financial Group is one of Canada’s top corporate donors and remains steadfast in the belief that arts and culture enrich all our lives.  BMO was recognized for its long-standing commitment to mid-sized Toronto theatre organizations, as it continues to support companies who take profound artistic risks, forge new producing and presenting models and push ideas of what theatre might be.

    Thursday, 14 October 2010

    ArtsVote Across Ontario

    by Brandon Moore, Communications Coordinator

    Fall always makes me nostalgic for the time I lived in Ottawa.  No city does the season better—presumably that’s the trade-off for the terrible winters you’ll encounter soon after.

    Elections also make me nostalgic for the city.  Besides being the place where I cast my first vote ever (the referendum on the Charlottetown Accord, just to date myself), as a student journalist at Carleton University, I spent a lot of time covering Ottawa municipal politics.  One of my professors, Roger Bird, said that it was important that we understand municipal politics, because municipal politicians have a direct impact on our lives far more than any other level of government.

    It was a lesson I took to heart.  I’ve always been a bit of a political geek, but trekking out to those meetings, suffering through the vagaries of procedure and protocol, learning the intricacies of the old Regional Municipality of Ottawa-Carleton—I certainly became more aware with the direct ways that municipal governments shape our lives, especially in the arts sector.  And I continue to find it today across Ontario.  I’ve seen the full range of municipal arts support: from the mayor who personally runs the city’s annual arts fundraiser, to the district councillor who thinks that a theatre receiving $1000 a year needs to “get off the gravy train.”

    Municipal elections are being held across Ontario on October 25.  For Ontario arts supporters, the opportunity to make an informed choice in this election is helped by ArtsVote.  In municipalities across the province, artists, arts workers, and arts supporters have come together to evaluate incumbents, survey candidates, and inform voters under the “ArtsVote” brand.  Whether or not these activities will result in actual electoral outcomes is debatable, but the most valuable aspect of it, as Michael Wheeler of Praxis Theatre wrote, it has “brought attention to the cultural community and the issues of arts funding” and put it under “a media spotlight.”  Whatever the outcome of the various elections, only a fool would ignore the repeated refrain of “I am an artist.  And I vote.”

    Here are some of the ArtsVote activities across the province:

    (Please feel free to share any others activities from your community, in the comments or by email to; additions since my original post are marked with an asterisk)

    Theatre Ontario has no partisan opinion on any candidate for office or their suitability for election.  We provide these links solely to encourage artists, arts workers and arts supporters to inform themselves.

    Wednesday, 13 October 2010

    Welcome To Our New Board Members

    Theatre Ontario is pleased to welcome the final two appointments to our Board of Directors for 2010-2011.

    Walter Maskel, of Gore Bay, has been appointed by QUONTA to represent community theatres in northeastern Ontario (roughly the area from Parry Sound to Timmins to Sault Ste. Marie.)  Walter has been actively involved in all aspects of theatre for the past 35 years. He has directed well over 100 productions, including 40 major musicals. A retired educator, he has worked for the Ontario government as a theatre consultant, and has adjudicated student festivals. He has received numerous awards for directing and visual presentation at regional, provincial, and international festivals. He has also received the Thornloe Mitre, an honorary award from Thornloe University, affiliated with Laurentian, for his contribution to the arts in Northern Ontario.  Presently he is Past President of the Quonta Drama Region and is the Artistic Director of Gore Bay Theatre on Manitoulin Island.

    Mark Mooney, of London, has been appointed by the Western Ontario Drama League to represent community theatres in southwestern Ontario.

    The members of the 2010-2011 Theatre Ontario Board are:
    Julianne Snepsts, Toronto (President)
    Anne Mooney, London (Vice-President)
    Chris Scholey, Toronto (Treasurer)
    Sheena Albanese, Thunder Bay (Secretary)
    Margit Tauchner, Ottawa (Member-at-Large)
    Patrick Gauthier, Ottawa
    Michael Grit, Richmond Hill
    John Koensgen, Ottawa
    Cam Lund, Newmarket
    Walter Maskel, Gore Bay
    Debra McLauchlan, St. Catharines
    Mark Mooney, London
    Angela Rebeiro, Toronto
    Andy Trasuk, Cornwall
    Brian Van Norman, Waterloo

    Tuesday, 12 October 2010

    ONstage Openings for the week of October 12

    Hope you all enjoyed the Thanksgiving weekend.  Here is some of the theatre opening in your community:

    In Southwestern Ontario:
    On October 15, Old Love at Ingersoll Theatre of Performing Arts
    On October 15, Ten Times Two at Theatre Woodstock

    In Toronto:
    On October 12, Radiance at b current
    On October 12, The Invisible Girl at Lorraine Kimsa Theatre for Young People
    On October 13, The Girls Who Saw Everything at Ryerson Theatre School

    In Eastern Ontario:
    On October 13, The White Sheep Of The Family at Rural Root Theatre (Constance Bay)
    On October 14, Staff Room at Belleville Theatre Guild
    On October 14, Freedom 85 at Thousand Islands Playhouse
    On October 15, Hamlet (solo) at Great Canadian Theatre Company

    In South Central Ontario:
    On October 14, Educating Rita at W.E.S.T. - West End Studio Theatre (Oakville)

    For all the theatre current playing across Ontario, or for information for theatres on how to add/update your listing, visit the ONstage show listings on the Theatre Ontario website.

    Thursday, 7 October 2010

    Congratulations to 2011 Shaw Intern Directors

    Congratulations to Craig Hall and Johnna Wright, chosen as the two intern directors for the 2011 Neil Munro Intern Directors Project at the Shaw Festival.  Each year, the Shaw Festival hires two Intern Directors for a period of about six months.  They look for promising professional directors near the beginning of their careers.  Applicants should have a fair bit of professional experience, but probably not in a company as large as the Shaw Festival.  The contracts run approximately from mid-March to September, depending on the production schedule for the particular season.  Since its inception in 1988, the project has been sponsored annually by Sun Life Financial and Theatre Ontario.

    Craig Hall has been working as a professional theatre artist since 1997. He is the Artistic Producer of Vancouver’s Rumble Productions and is a member of the critically acclaimed Theatre Melee ensemble. In addition to his work with these companies, he has had the pleasure of directing and designing for a number of other companies including Green Thumb Theatre, nightswimming, Radix Theatre, Section 8 Productions, Studio 58, The Electric Company, The Virtual Stage, Theatre Replacement, The Firehall Arts Centre, Pi Theatre, Douglas College and Theatre Skam. Craig has also worked extensively as a Technical Director, Stage Manager and Dramaturg. He is the recipient of the 2003 Ray Michal award for outstanding body of work by an emerging director and is a graduate of Studio 58.

    Johnna Wright spent nine years as Co-Artistic and Managing Director of Vancouver’s Solo Collective Theatre, a company that commissions, develops and premieres work by Western Canadian playwrights.  There she provided dramaturgical support to over 20 new scripts and directed a number of premieres.  Other credits include the premiere of Ian Weir's The Man Who Shot Chance Delaney for Western Canada Theatre, The Leading Ladies for the Gateway Theatre, Little Women for Persephone Theatre, and The Rez Sisters for Theatre @ UBC.  In Vancouver, Johnna received the Jessie Richardson Theatre Award as Outstanding Director for The Triumph of Love (Blackbird Theatre), which was also named Outstanding Production. She is a recipient of the Ray Michal Award for Outstanding Body of Work by an Emerging Director, and was recently nominated for a Saskatoon and Area Theatre Award as Outstanding Director for Little Women.  Johnna holds an MFA in Drama (Directing) from the University of Alberta, where her thesis production, Maureen Hunter's Transit of Venus, was co-produced by Workshop West.  She is also a graduate of UBC Theatre.  Johnna is currently a Literary Manager for Persephone Theatre in Saskatoon, from where she manages a freelance career.

    For more information, please visit the Neil Munro Intern Directors Project at the Shaw Festival on the Theatre Ontario website.

    Monday, 4 October 2010

    ONstage Openings for the week of October 4

    What's opening this week across Ontario?

    In Southcentral Ontario:
    October 7, Into The Woods at OnStage Uxbridge

    In Southwestern Ontario:
    October 6, Twelve Angry Men at Drayton Entertainment - St Jacobs Country Playhouse

    In Toronto:
    October 5, Hard Times at Puppetmongers Theatre
    October 7, Shakespeare In Hollywood at Scarborough Players
    October 11, The List at Nightwood Theatre

    For all the theatre current playing across Ontario, or for information for theatres on how to add/update your listing, visit the ONstage show listings on the Theatre Ontario website.