Thursday, 15 May 2014

ONstage Tonight at Festival: The Curtain Club

Tonight we see the only Canadian play at Theatre Ontario Festival 2014, as The Curtain Club presents Lenin’s Embalmers by Vern Thiessen, representing ACT-CO, the Association of Community Theatres—Central Ontario.

The Curtain Club was founded in Richmond Hill in 1954; Cicely Thomson, one of the theatre’s co-founders was also a founding member of Theatre Ontario.  Hosts of Theatre Ontario Festival 2011, The Curtain Club last represented ACT-CO at our 2012 Festival in Sault Ste. Marie, presenting Colleen Murphy’s The December Man / L’homme de décembre.  The Curtain Club has twice won the Elsie Award for Outstanding Festival Production, first in 2004 for their production of Staff Room (written and directed by Joan Burrows, who is the director of Lenin’s Embalmers) and again in 2005 for their production of Marvin’s Room.

Lenin's Embalmers
The Curtain Club
Brian J. Moore and Tamara Van Bakel
Photo by Davis Strong
Lenin’s Embalmers was a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Award for Drama in 2011.  Russia, 1924. Two scientists are assigned an impossible task: make Vladimir Ilyich Lenin live forever, or face death. This is a darkly comic imagination of the true tale of two Jewish scientists who were roped into preserving the body of Lenin by his communist comrades.

At the 2014 ACT-CO Festival, The Curtain Club won Best Production of a Comedy, Best Performance by a Male in a Leading Role (Phil Dionne as Boris Zbarsky), and Best Sound Design (John Hunter) with nominations for Best Director (Joan Burrows), Best Stage Manager (Sharon Dykstra), Best Performance by a Male in a Supporting Role (Fabian Levy-Hara as Stalin), Best Performance by a Female in a Supporting Role (Tamara Van Bakel as Nadia, 1, 2 and 3), Best Lighting Design (Mary Jane Boon and David Rhodes) and Best Set Design (Wayne Milliner and Alice Torrance).

Read more about Theatre Ontario Festival 2014 on our website

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