The final two plays have been chosen for Theatre Ontario Festival 2015, completing our showcase of outstanding community theatre productions opening May 13 in Oshawa.
On Wednesday, May 13, Festival opens with Oshawa Little Theatre’s presentation of Neil Simon’s The Odd Couple, representing ACT-CO—the Association of Community Theatres of Central Ontario (ACT-CO). This marks the first time since 2006 that the host theatre company has also been a presenting theatre company.
On Friday, May 15, last year’s Elsie Award recipients for Outstanding Festival Production return to Festival, as Peterborough Theatre Guild will again represent the Eastern Ontario Drama League as they present Born Yesterday by Garson Kanin.
With all four productions in place, we have plays written in the 1940s (Born Yesterday), the 1960s (The Odd Couple), the 1980s (Agnes of God) and the 2000s (The Clean House.) This will also be the first Festival made up of four American plays since 1997.
We’re pleased to announce that our Festival Awards Live-Blog will return for the sixth year. Festival celebrates excellence in community theatre, and the live-blog gives an opportunity for theatre-lovers across Ontario who can’t be in Oshawa to follow along with the Festival Awards presentation. In addition to the Festival Awards, the Brunch will feature the presentation of the Michael Spence Award to John Storey of Markham for his outstanding contribution to community theatre in the ACT-CO region.
We’re also excited to introduce two more educational events at Festival. On Thursday afternoon, Festival-goers can join us at our workshop with Playwrights Guild of Canada on “Canadian Plays in Community Theatres.” On Saturday afternoon, immediately following our Annual General Meeting, our Youth Advisory Committee hosts “Cultivating Tomorrow’s Artists”, a conversation about engaging youth in theatre programming. With detailed adjudications of the previous night’s performances, and our previously announced Playwright-in-Person event with Damien Atkins on Friday afternoon, Theatre Ontario Festival is the go-to educational event for the serious community theatre practitioner.