Groundling Theatre to Launch with THE WINTER'S TALE at Coal Mine Theatre This Winter

Groundling Theatre to Launch with THE WINTER'S TALE at Coal Mine Theatre This Winter

Groundling Theatre Company's inaugural production, a full staging of William Shakespeare's THE WINTER'S TALE, will be presented as part of the Coal Mine Theatre's second season of adventurous theatre, running January 28 - February 20, 2016. One of the most psychologically engaging romances in the English language, this intimate chamber production of THE WINTER'S TALE will be directed by Graham Abbey, founder and artistic director of Groundling Theatre Company.

Written near the end of his career, and considered to be one of Shakespeare's greatest masterpieces, The Winter's Tale chronicles the descent of Leontes, King of Sicilia into a world of jealousy, murder and conspiracy when he falsely accuses his queen Hermione (Michelle Giroux) of an infidelity with his oldest friend Polixenes (Patrick Galligan). Upon receiving news that his wife and young son have died under the strain of public humiliation, and believing his newborn daughter to be not his own, the vengeful King orders the child to be abandoned on the remote shores of Bohemia. When divine intervention plants the seeds of forgiveness and rebirth, the possibility of faith is reawakened.

"I've had a lot of loss in my life in recent years, and I've found great solace and understanding coming from the late romances of Shakespeare. It's a place where issues of loss and redemption can be worked out and the possibility of rebirth and forgiveness is actually something you can reach out and touch. THE WINTER'S TALE begins happily, then rapidly descends into darkness until the moment when a child's life is spared. Then we start the slow, steady journey back into the light once again." Graham Abbey in The Toronto Star, November 2015

Featuring a compact cast of ten actors, most with Stratford Festival pedigree, THE WINTER'S TALE stars Tom McCamus as Leontes, Brent Carver as Autolycus, Mark Crawford as the Clown, Charlie Gallant as Florizel, Patrick Galligan as Polixenes, Michelle Giroux as Hermione, Roy Lewis as Camillo,Sarena Parmar as Perdita, Lucy Peacock as Paulina, and Robert Persichini as Old Shepherd, with set and lighting design by Steve Lucas, costume design by Michael Gianfrancesco and live original music by George Meanwell.

The Groundling Theatre Company was launched in 2012 by Dora Award-winner Graham Abbey (Sixteen seasons with Stratford Shakespeare Festival; The Border on CBC TV and Remedy on Global Television; Afghanada on CBC Radio; feature films Take This Waltz directed by Sarah Polley, Defendor with Woody Harrelson, and the upcoming Milton's Secret with Donald Sutherland) to produce imaginative, original and accessible productions of Shakespeare's plays, as well as works inspired by Shakespeare, to educate and inspire a new generation of audiences and artists. While presenting Shakespeare out of its traditional context and during the Bard's traditional off-season, Groundling Theatre can re-examine and re-interpret the canon for new personal and political revelations still to be found in their timeless themes.

Coal Mine Theatre is an independent theatre company curated by Ted Dykstra and Diana Bentley. The 2015/16 Season consists of: The River written by Jez Butterworth and directed by Ted Dykstra (Nov 1-22, 2015); Shakespeare's The Winter's Tale directed by Graham Abbey/A Groundling Theatre Company production (Jan 26 - Feb 21, 2016); Killer Joe written by Tracy Letts and directed by Peter Pasyk/presented in association with Surface/Underground (April 3-24, 2016); and Instructions (To Any Future Socialist Government Wishing To Abolish Christmas) written by Michael Mackenzie and directed by David Storch (May 29 - June 19, 2016).


A Groundling Theatre Production presented by Coal Mine Theatre


Written by William Shakespeare • Directed by Graham Abbey

Featuring Brent Carver, Mark Crawford, Charlie Gallant, Patrick Galligan, Michelle Giroux, Roy Lewis, Tom McCamus, Sarena Parmar, Lucy Peacock, Robert Persichini

Set and Lighting Design by Steve Lucas • Costume Design by Michael Gianfrancesco • Live Original Music by George Meanwell • Produced by Anna Kajtar for Groundling Theatre

COAL MINE THEATRE - New Location for the remainder of 2016 Season - 1454 Danforth Avenue, Toronto (beside the new location of The Magic Oven near Coxwell Avenue)

January 26 - February 20, 2016

Opening Night: Thursday, January 28, 2016 @ 7:30pm

Regular Run: Tuesday-Sunday at 7:30pm

Tickets: Previews $25 • Regular $35 • Rush at the door 30 mins prior to performance $30; Sunday Pay-What-You-Want • Groups 15+ $20

To order tickets visit

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