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Hart House Theatre Presents HEATHERS


Hart House Theatre Presents HEATHERS

Opening the season on September 21, Hart House Theatre presents a musical that is "so very" with a dark side that is "grody to the max", Heathers: The Musical. Directed by well-known musical powerhouse, Jennifer Walls, and starring a stellar cast of emergent talent, this production of Heathers: The Musical promises to deliver a night at the theatre to die for.

Based upon the iconic film of the same name, Heathers: The Musical tells the tale of mean girls and murderous vengeance between outcasts and the popular in-crowd. With a twisted, pitch-black sense of humour and a rockin' soundtrack, this musical explores some of today's societal challenges with the backdrop of a 1980s high school social scene.

Hart House welcomes Director Jennifer Walls to Hart House Theatre for her debut directing project with us, although she is certainly no stranger to our stage or to musical theatre!

Jennifer returns to Hart House Theatre after performing as Mary Lane in the Canadian Premiere of Reefer Madness and Marie LaSalle in High Fidelity. A graduate of Sheridan Institute's Musical Theatre Performance program, Jennifer is a Toronto based performer, producer and voice actor. Jennifer has produced a number of successful productions at the Toronto Fringe including The Redheaded Coffeeshop Girl series and Baker's Dozen, Twelve Angry Puppets in addition to her performance work. She was the long-time host and producer of Singular Sensation, A Musical Theatre Open Mic, Toronto's premier weekly musical theatre event that recently celebrated their 7th year in Toronto. She is also a curator of the Sunday Cabaret Series at Toronto's 120 Diner, mentoring young and emerging performers helping create and produce Cabaret. This past year Jennifer was featured on the cover of NOW Magazine for her work at the Toronto Fringe and in the city. Most recently she acted as assistant to the director and dance captain in addition to performing at Drayton Entertainment under one of her mentors, David Rogers.

When asked what makes a story from 1988 relevant 30 years later, Jennifer had this to say, "As I write this in late August, Toronto has had more deaths from gun violence this year in the city than at the same point in 2017. Twice this year, a mental health issue resulted in a needless loss of life. Ten people in April on a curb in North York, two this summer on the Danforth and who knows how many others haven't made the news. Why does this happen? The answer evades us, but somewhere in the Romantic/Comedy/Horror that is Heathers, there's a clue.

Somewhere in the mixed up world of senior year, Veronica, the precocious 17 year old at the centre of all this mayhem, makes the answer clear. There's a cycle of cruelty in the world, and in that cycle we make 'Heathers'. We made them in 1988 when the film was released and we continue to make them nearly 30 years later. Bullies and victims going back and forth (lather, rinse, repeat) until they tear each other apart. That cycle of cruelty turns into suicides, guns, bombs and sometimes a car on a curb in your city. We're responsible for our fellow 'students'. Veronica discovers how to break the cycle and opens our eyes to the importance of treating each other with compassion and understanding.

Beneath it's dark comedy and content, Heathers gives us a glimmer of hope that there can be change in the world if we stop looking the other way and connect."

Joining Jennifer on the production team are artists Giustin MacLean (Music Director) and Amanda Nuttall (Choreographer) as well as designers Brandon Kleiman (sets), Erin Frances Gerofsky (costumes), Melissa Joakim (lights/Projection) and Jeremy Hutton (sound).

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