by Lisa Middleton
Our Artistic Director, Antoni Cimolino, has focused his inaugural season around themes of community and belonging. As our lives become increasingly individualistic, the theatre is one of the few spaces left where we gather as a community. As you plan your visit to the Festival this year, we hope that you’ll take a few moments to contemplate the value of community. Mr. Cimolino has said that from “collective experience comes empathetic understanding,” and we sincerely hope that this is true for you as you enter our theatres this season.
Watch here as Antoni discusses our 2013 season:
Many productions in our 2013 playbill explore the position of people on the fringes of society — the “other.” Shylock in The Merchant of Venice and Othello are certainly deemed as cultural and ethnic outsiders in their communities; this idea of outsiders also extends to characters like Tommy and like Elora in The Thrill, who are physically set apart. The playbill also considers how communities and individuals relate to governing bodies – family, church, state – all of which play a fundamental role in shaping the cultural landscape. Certainly in Romeo and Juliet, Mary Stuart, Measure for Measure, The Merchant of Venice, Fiddler on the Roof and even The Three Musketeers, we see the dynamics of communities at play. There are elements of community in all twelve productions being offered this season, from the comedic to the tragic. We hope that our productions will give you opportunities to connect to, understand and contemplate the communities in your life.
An important feature of our 2013 season is The Forum. The Forum will provide Festival fans and community members with a platform to further explore the themes that are prevalent in our productions and in the world around us. We have an exciting line-up of speakers, concerts, discussions, classes, film screenings, exhibitions, panels, debates and even meals planned for you! To top things off, we have an amazing roster of special guests joining us including John de Chastelain, Canada’s former Chief of the Defence Staff; comedian Colin Mochrie; former Governor General Adrienne Clarkson; your favourite Festival actors and many more! We hope that these events will be fun, but also thought-provoking, and will challenge our assumptions about the stories we watch unfold on our stages, in the news and in our own communities. For a full list of Forum events, please visit our website!
Remember, booking your tickets before January 31 ensures that you’ll enjoy the lowest regular prices of the season (up to 25% less than our in-season rates), and also gives you the benefit of being able to exchange your tickets at a later date without paying any fees! In addition, if you book your tickets online, you’ll be saving 50% on handling fees!