New Works from Stan Douglas, Chris Haddock & More Set for Canadian Stage's 2014-15 Season
Highlights include new work from Canadian artists Stan Douglas, Chris Haddock and Jennifer Tarver; remount of Robert Lepage's sold-out Needles and Opium; Spotlight South Africa festival; great theatre, dance, circus and music Toronto, ON - Canadian Stage today announced the 14 productions and collaborations featured in the 2014.2015 season. Artistic & General Director Matthew Jocelyn continues to make Canadian Stage a home for innovative live performance from Canada and around the world with a genre-defying line-up that celebrates the company's mandate to share daring work guided by a strong directorial vision. In addition to featuring acclaimed artists and productions from around the world, the upcoming season will share newly commissioned Canadian work with an international audience. Transfixing theatre, dance, circus, and music with a particular focus on multimedia performance will span Canadian Stage's three venues: the Bluma Appel Theatre, the Berkeley Street Theatre and the High Park Amphitheatre.
"A new season presents a new opportunity to explore, discover, experience, and reflect. 2014.2015 offers a spectrum of emotional journeys that truly elasticizes the idea of what theatre is in today's urban world," said Jocelyn. "With Canadian artists like Stan Douglas, Chris Haddock, Daniel Brooks, Jennifer Tarver, Robert Lepage and Chris Abraham alongside creators like Victoria Chaplin, Michèle Anne De Mey, and Justin Ellington, we will share dance from Belgium, circus from France, two world premieres, a Russian classic with a twist, a new play from Broadway, and a play by Britain's most innovative writer today, a Spotlight South Africa festival and much more. We can't wait to explore the endless possibilities of art with our audiences."
The season opens at the Bluma Appel Theatre with the critic and audience favourite Kiss & Cry, a dance production from Belgium created by choreographer Michèle Anne De Mey and film-maker Jaco Van Dormael (Caméra d'Or, Cannes Film Festival). Two hands (one male, one female), filmed live in close-up, portray a pair of lovers as they dance around a set of miniature landscapes in a sumptuous melange of film, dance, poetry and theatre.
Next is Helen Lawrence, a production that intertwines theatre, visual art, live-action filming and computer-generated simulations of historical sites to tell a suspense-filled tale of urban renewal and revenge. The production (initially announced as part of the 2013.2014 season) is conceived and directed by world-renowned visual artist Stan Douglas and written by Chris Haddock. Together with collaborators Vancouver's Arts Club Theatre and The Banff Centre, Canadian Stage is proud to share this piece with the world with a Canadian and European tour including dates in Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, Edinburgh, Munich and more.
Programming at the Bluma Appel Theatre also includes a circus piece from living legends Victoria Chaplin (daughter of the iconic comedian Charlie Chaplin) and Jean-Baptiste Thierrée. Le Cirque Invisible is a spectacle of pure circus magic, created by two masters of the art. The haunting and unexpectedly funny Broadway drama, The Other Place by Sharr White, will be helmed by Siminovitch Award-winner Daniel Brooks (director of 2012's RACE). Jocelyn will direct the Canadian premiere of the deeply perceptive play Harper Regan, by British playwright Simon Stephens. The season will end on a high with the return of Robert Lepage's Needles and Opium, following rave reviews and a string of sold-out performances in November 2013.
At the Berkeley Street Theatre, the work of some of Canada's most esteemed choreographers will be on display in Older and Reckless, a presentation series that showcases work from older dance artists. Conceived by Claudia Moore of Moonhorse Dance Theatre, the presentation celebrates the project's 15th anniversary with a series of short works from some of Canada's most celebrated choreographers, Bill Coleman, Robert Desrosiers, Cloud9 collective, Douglas Dunn, and Esmerelda Enrique.
Music will play a starring role with What Makes a Man, a new creation from Jennifer Tarver and Justin Ellington (son of Duke Ellington) that explores the life of famed French-Armenian singer Charles Aznavour. The collaboration will be presented in association with incoming Berkeley Street Theatre partner Necessary Angel, under the artistic leadership of Jennifer Tarver, as part of a three year residency. Berkeley Street partner company Crow's Theatre returns for their final season at Canadian Stage with a unique take on Anton Chekhov's The Seagull.
Canadian Stage revisits its biennial festival series highlighting work from the best artists of a selected country with Spotlight South Africa. Over the course of three weeks, five unique pieces featuring dance, drama, puppetry from the Handspring Puppet Company (Warhorse), and musical performances will animate the Bluma Appel and Berkeley Street Theatres.
At Shakespeare in High Park, Canadian Stage will once again create two plays in repertory, this year presenting As You Like It and Titus Andronicus on alternate evenings under the stars.
To encourage post-performance activities, Friday evening performances will begin at 7 p.m., giving theatre-goers more time for discussion over dinner or drinks. Also new next season, Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday matinees will begin at 1 p.m., with Tuesday through Thursday and Saturday evening performances beginning at 8 p.m.
In addition to the work presented on stage, Canadian Stage continues to support the artistic community through a variety of professional development initiatives and investment in artistic creation. The company offers artistic and learning opportunities for children, youth, educators, young professionals and adults in schools and communities year-round. Canadian Stage continues to work with the Department of Theatre in the Faculty of Fine Arts, York University, to offer the York University MFA in Theatre - Stage Direction in Collaboration with Canadian Stage, entering its third year with current MFA candidates Estelle Shook and Matjash Mrozewski.
2014.2015 Subscriptions are on sale beginning December 17 with 4-show packages starting from $114, 6-show packages starting from $168 and full-season 14-show packages starting from $384. Subscribers who book before January 31, 2013 will receive an additional five to 10 per cent off their package price. Subscriptions may be purchased by phone at 416-368-3110 or in-person at the Canadian Stage Box Office: Bluma Appel Theatre (27 Front Street East) or Berkeley Street Theatre (26 Berkeley Street). Single tickets will be on sale in March 2014. Full details on the productions, casting and subscription packages are available online at www.canadianstage.com.