Friday, 30 September 2016

Ontario Off Stage

by Brandon Moore, Community Theatre and Communications Manager

Conversation Starters


Behind the Scenes at Ontario’s Theatres


In Case You Missed It

Thursday, 29 September 2016

Stories from the Youth Theatre Training Program: Thinking Rock Community Arts

By Christine Rankin, Education Assistant 

Our Youth Theatre Training Program (YTTP) offers financial support to programs that deliver accessible training to young people (age 14 to 21), led by professional artists in skills such as technical production and design; theatre administration and producing; and performance skills and play creation. 

Thinking Rock Community Arts was supported for their program The Rivers Speak that took place in the rural communities of Algoma during the summer of 2015. 

Thinking Rock Community Arts fosters spaces where people of all backgrounds and abilities feel free to create art. They submitted The Rivers Speak for YTTP as their first major project to begin a series of projects embracing multi-disciplinary art over three years. The Rivers Speak began in the summer of 2015 in the rural communities of Algoma - Blind River, Mississauga First Nation, Serpent River First Nation, and Elliot Lake – and focused on cross cultural collaboration between Settler and First Nation communities. The program drew on the nature of the area as inspiration for art: stories about the rivers and water-ways were shared both orally and visually by the community members through a variety of art media. The participants were guided by a team of professional artists with mentorship from Jumblies Theatre and other professional arts organizations from Ontario and across the nation. The final product of these workshops was a performance that incorporated how each person reflected on their home, its geography and its history, and the cultural community they belong to. Thinking Rock stated:
“This project represents an opportunity to bring these youth participants, communities and artists along with us on this learning journey, which we believe will be a step toward creating more inclusive, liveable, accepting communities” 

The Rivers Speak included four training workshops of 10 to 40 youths per session. The youths explored the exciting fields of stilt walking, mask making, puppet making and puppetry, as well as movement and theatre design. As one might expect, the participants were ecstatic throughout all the sessions, describing how wonderful it was to engage with such amazing artists and to learn skills that one would not have the opportunity to learn otherwise. Participants praised the value of learning from experienced community arts professionals, with one participant even expressing the desire to make their own stilts by hand!

The youths were the heart of the program. They brought their voices into the conversation as well as incredible energy and joy to each new skill. Coming from Francophone, Anglophone and Indigenous backgrounds, the participants were extremely pleased to be exposed to each other’s’ cultures. In response to being asked what their favourite part of the training program was, participants responded with comments such as:
“seeing the convergence of different people, cultures, and communities”
“amazing people, good energy: they are very welcoming” 
“it kept me engaged and inspired”
“I had such an amazing time putting lots of different art forms together with so many amazing artists”
Participants were blown away by the openness and collaborative nature of the people involved.  The young artists were unbelievably grateful to receive the chance to learn aspects of artistry that could be applied to their future projects. Script development, performance and musical collaboration were all headliners of the program schedule that not only influenced these young artists but also inspired those who were new to the art-world. 

Thinking Rock Community Arts is the first community arts organization in Algoma. The fun activities planned by Thinking Rock were embraced by the youth in the program, their contagious enthusiasm clearly apparent. Throughout the discussions regarding the link of geography to story, how each person connects to one another, and what art can be, the youth led and provided fresh perspectives that were seen in their final performance. Through The Rivers Speak, Thinking Rock has created a positive space for people of different backgrounds and generations to work together and make art that is representative of their members. 

Thank you Thinking Rock Community Arts for your astounding work for The Rivers Speak!

The next application deadline for the Youth Theatre Training Program is October 17, 2016. 


Theatre Ontario’s Youth Theatre Training Program is funded by the Ontario Arts Council, an agency of the Government of Ontario. 

Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Browsing Our Bulletin Board

Coming Up from Theatre Ontario


Check out all of our upcoming Career Stream and Creator Stream workshops.

Upcoming on The Bulletin Board


  • Deadline to apply for Ontario150 Grants Partnership Program for engaging, enabling, and empowering youth is September 30.
  • Deadline for nominations for the Canada Council’s John Hobday Awards in Arts Management is September 30.
  • Deadline to sign-up for Acting Up Stage Company’s One Song Glory (free musical theatre intensive for youth 13 to 19) pre-intensive workshops is September 30.
  • Deadline for submissions for Thousand Islands Playhouse’s Ontario Arts Council Theatre Creators Reserve is October 1.
    The deadline to apply for the Theatre Creators Reserve at
    Thousand Islansd Playhouse is October 1.
  • Anne Marie Scheffler’s One Person Show Workshop runs October 1 to 2 in Toronto.
  • Deadline for applications for the Toronto Arts Council Artists in the Library program is October 3.
  • Deadline for applications for directors (non-paying) at the NAGs Players annual pantomime is October 3.
  • Deadline for applications for the Ontario Arts Council’s grants for Artist(s) in the Community / Workplace, Arts Education Projects and National and International Residency is October 4.
  • Deadline for applications for Paprika Festival’s 16/17 programming is October 7.
  • Deadline for applications for a tenancy at Artscape Youngplace is October 7.

New on The Bulletin Board


  • Toronto Irish Players invites applications to direct The Night Joe Dolan’s Car Broke Down (non-paying community theatre production.) The application deadline is October 8.
  • Theatre 3x60 is hosting Open House Information Sessions on October 11 and 18 for their free youth theatre collective, for Durham youth 14 to 21.
  • Great Canadian Theatre Company invites applications for their OAC Theatre Creators’ Reserve program. Their funding priority is for playwrights and collectives based in, or who originate from, Ottawa and the National Capital Region. The application deadline is December 2.
  • Festival Players of Prince Edward County invites applications for their OAC Theatre Creators’ Reserve program. Their funding priority is work that concerns itself with rural and/or epic themes, musicals, work for young audiences, and work by local playwrights from their community. The application deadline is December 9.
  • The Village Players of Bloor West Village are seeking Costume Coordinators for Powers and Gloria and The Melville Boys (non-paying community theatre productions.)

Check out these items, and other postings from our members.
Theatre Ontario individual members can also access Auditions, Job Postings and Discount Ticket Offers on our Theatre Ontario Individual Member Resources on our website

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Stories from the Summer Theatre Intensive: "How I Spent My Summer Vacation, or, 'Drop! And give me twenty (lines)!'"

I'm Sean, a middle-aged community theatre actor/director/playwright from Kitchener, Ontario. This summer, like last summer, I spent a week in Theatre Ontario's Summer Workshop Intensive program. You could also call it theatre boot camp.

Last year I took Andrew Lamb's "Directions on Directing"—a brilliant course that filled my head with much knowledge useful not only as a director but on-stage as an actor. 

This year, I chose to focus on my acting skills and signed up for Brenda Kamino's "Hot Scenes." I had no idea what I was getting into.

Not exactly true. I knew I'd be in for five days of almost constant intense focus not only in class, but in collaboration with my peers. Classmates, all of whom were people like me, taking a week out of their regular lives in dedication to improving their theatre craft.

But what would my class be like? I was told to prepare a new monologue for presentation. And to have read Death of a Salesman so we could discuss it in class. And that we would be assigned scenes to work on based on our needs and desires as actors.

The first day we did some warm-ups then delivered our monologues. I don't know if I've ever seen a more intent observer in Brenda Kamino. Not so much pinning one to the wall as being very aware of everything one is doing. After a brief bit of feedback we were sent off to lunch and told upon our return we'd be assigned specific scenes and partners that would expose and exercise our acting gaps.

When we came back, we got our assignments; several pages each of our doom. For when one is weak in an area, one must exercise that area, right where one is weak. 

My scene had me playing completely against type, in situations I would never choose, expressing emotions I found personally revolting. But I am an actor, yes? I should be able to act! 

I can do this thing, this is why I am here, to grow and learn, to become better at my craft, though it will eventually lead me to weep on stage, to shout violently, to profess undying love, to forgive, and to beg forgiveness.

And not just me. Each of us, receiving scenes and characters that challenged us, made us fight our habits, forced us to examine and confront our own personal truths within the characters we became.

And then Brenda asked us to perform. And then she said, "you can do better." And when we didn't know how, she showed us how. By observing so carefully, she saw what was missing, and by working with us in minute detail, she gave us the tools to become better.

It was emotionally exhausting. And astonishingly rewarding. In a week I learned new techniques to not just be a better actor myself, but how to be a better actor for my fellow actors on stage. To be more open to them, and to respond to their own openness. To make  it real for ourselves, and for the audience.

That's what I did on my summer vacation. Maybe you want to do it too?

--Sean Puckett (Kitchener, ON)

Related Reading:

Monday, 26 September 2016

ONstage Openings for the week of September 26

This week’s openings on Ontario’s stages
ONstage Now Playing in Southwestern Ontario
Trying at Players Guild of Hamilton
Andrea Adcock, Steve O'Brien
Photo by Lynne Jamieson

In Northeastern Ontario

Sep. 30, Armstrong's War at Sudbury Theatre Centre, with a preview on Sep. 29

In South Central Ontario

Sep. 29, The Underpants at Oshawa Little Theatre

In Southwestern Ontario

Sep. 30, Prelude to a Kiss at London Community Players, with a preview on Sep. 29

In Toronto

ONstage Now Playing in Eastern Ontario
Over the River and Through the Woods at Studio Theatre Perth
Norma Cummings, Rob Glas, Jennifer Jasiak,
Connor Williamson, David Wright, Sheila Jasiak
Sep. 27, Hosanna at Soulpepper Theatre, currently in previews
Sep. 29, Noises Off at Soulpepper Theatre, currently in previews
Sep. 29, Brave New World at Theatre Passe Muraille, with previews from Sep. 27
Sep. 29, Entertaining Angels at Stage Centre Productions


For all the theatre playing across Ontario, visit Theatre Ontario’s ONstage theatre listings on our website

Friday, 23 September 2016

Ontario Off Stage

by Brandon Moore, Community Theatre and Communications Manager

Behind the Scenes at Ontario’s Theatres

TO Toasts


In Case You Missed It

You can also receive news from Theatre Ontario every month by email. Our archives are online and the September issue is now available.

Thursday, 22 September 2016

Stories from the Professional Theatre Training Program

Our Professional Theatre Training Program (PTTP) offers financial support for unique and flexible training with a chosen mentor in any theatrical discipline (except performance.)

Today we feature five stories:
The next application deadline for the Professional Theatre Training Program is October 3, 2016.

Learn more about Theatre Ontario's Professional Theatre Training Program

Theatre Ontario’s Professional Theatre Training Program is funded by the Ontario Arts Council, an agency of the Government of Ontario.

Stories from the Professional Theatre Training Program: Gilda Monreal

Gilda Monreal
Photo by Jeremie Triplet
Our Professional Theatre Training Program (PTTP) offers financial support for unique and flexible training with a chosen mentor in any theatrical discipline (except performance.)

Gilda Monreal is training in playwriting with Rosa Laborde at Criminal Theatre in Toronto.


(August 19, 2016) Over the past six weeks, my mentorship with Rosa Laborde at Criminal Theatre has been absolutely informative and inspiring. In this first phase of a playwriting mentorship I have been guided through script analysis of Greek Classics, as well as of some contemporary plays. The readings, analysis and discussions that ensued have all contributed to a heightened awareness and self-reflection of my own script writing. Rosa is extremely perceptive and in her unique approach to mentoring she has highlighted my voice and vision. I am profoundly grateful for this process of growth as an artist and storyteller.

We began my mentorship by reviewing the current draft of my play Ayelen, which has been described by critics and colleagues as “operatic”, “magical”, “likes of greek tragedy”, and “poetic”. This was then followed by readings of the following Greek Classics: Medea, Iphigenia, Electra. A focus was placed on ‘structure’, ‘action in poetry’ and ‘argument’. These focuses were also analyzed in the contemporary plays Oleanna (Mamet), Mrs Warren’s Profession (Shaw), and Medea (Diane Rayor; as well as the novel by Christa Wolf). The analysis of action driven dialogue, of its efficiency and how it can be poetically communicated, has been a fundamental building block in understanding how a story can move forward. It has also opened my eyes to my own writing and how efficient/inefficient it can be.

The focus on ‘argument’ has also been a great tool to analyze. Not only because both sides of an argument can be justified, but also in how it contributes to character development. The layers, contradictions, and beauty of a character can be revealed in their argument. The complexity and depth which this can contribute to, in character and storyline, is exciting and I look forward to further developing this tool in my own writing in the coming weeks of my mentorship.

Some things seem so obvious now, but until this mentorship, I had not taken the time to truly understand the “efficiency” of language and how it can drive action forward. The discussions I have had with Rosa throughout my mentorship have already opened my perspective on story structure, as well as storytelling in poetic form. I am so excited about applying the concept of action driven dialogue in poetic form, as opposed to poetic form just for the sake of abstract expression or beauty.

We then reviewed Ayelen once again, this time with a focus on ‘structure’, ‘action in poetry’ and ‘argument’. I saw my own writing in a new light. I was able to see its structure, its fluidity as well as its holes. I was able to see the efficiency of the language I chose and how it either drove the story forward or not. I was able to see my own use of poetry and prose, and how some of it was simply aesthetic and how some of it actually gave life and movement to a scene.

And most recently, I begun the development of a new structure for Ayelen. I have begun to analyze what specific story it is I want to express in my script, and how select action will help to support this story and move it forward. I am now beginning the middle phase of my mentorship, where I get to apply, in practical terms, the teachings and guidance that Rosa has gifted me. In this phase I am strictly focusing on structure, so that the action can then support the writing which will come in the next phase. We have already met to discuss the concept of this ‘structure’ phase, and once I conclude my select choices in structure we will meet once again in the coming days to analyze these choices. Only half way through my mentorship and I am already so grateful for the new tools I have acquired!

Related Reading:


The next application deadline for the Professional Theatre Training Program is October 3, 2016.

Learn more about Theatre Ontario's Professional Theatre Training Program

Theatre Ontario’s Professional Theatre Training Program is funded by the Ontario Arts Council, an agency of the Government of Ontario.

Stories from the Professional Theatre Training Program: Krista Colosimo

Our Professional Theatre Training Program (PTTP) offers financial support for unique and flexible training with a chosen mentor in any theatrical discipline (except performance.)

Krista Colosimo trained in artistic direction with Ashlie Corcoran at Thousand Islands Playhouse in Gananoque.


(August 18, 2016)

My time at the Thousand Islands Playhouse has come to a close. 

This summer I set out to expand my knowledge of artistic leadership and season programming under the mentorship of Artistic Director, Ashlie Corcoran at The Thousand Islands Playhouse.

I spent the beginning of my internship becoming familiar with the administrative team, their duties, and the general flow of the TIP office. Since then I have been privy to the plans for the upcoming 2016/2017 season. I researched and read plays that were to be considered for production and created summaries and breakdowns for each play. I have attended staff meetings, community events, assisted in creating season breakdowns as well as material for the 2016-2017 Board presentation. I have also been able to assist in the season launch that will be taking place this September.

I am so grateful for the time I have spent at the Playhouse this summer and the generosity of all the staff who have contributed to my education here.  I would also like to thank Theatre Ontario, whose support made this experience truly possible. 

Related Reading:

The next application deadline for the Professional Theatre Training Program is October 3, 2016.

Learn more about Theatre Ontario's Professional Theatre Training Program

Theatre Ontario’s Professional Theatre Training Program is funded by the Ontario Arts Council, an agency of the Government of Ontario.

Stories from the Professional Theatre Training Program: Deborah Lim

Our Professional Theatre Training Program (PTTP) offers financial support for unique and flexible training with a chosen mentor in any theatrical discipline (except performance.)

Deborah Lim trained in production management with sandra Henderson at the Toronto Fringe Festival.


(August 9, 2016) I have been thinking about this last blog post for a while now because I knew it was coming and that it would be inevitable, but I have also been dreading it because it means that things are really over. I have had such a good time that I am sad to let it go.

I believe I made a difference in supporting sandra and a few of the other departments get the Festival up on its feet. I was surprised to discover when the festival came around how our job as the production manager slowed down; as long as all the venues and shows were running smoothly, there was not that much to do. I ended up spending a good amount of the Festival proper with the operations manager to help with the Fringe Club and updating old paperwork. While I picked up and improved on some necessary skills (I am so much better at using Excel now), I was surprised to discover how much soft skills are involved in navigating through various interactions and negotiations.

There was one day during the festival when we lost power at one of our main venues. There were so many people we had to talk to ranging from the public to the companies to Toronto Hydro, and there was a lot of stress in the air and we ended up canceling all the shows in that venue for the day. The Festival had been running so smoothly up until that point so it was a real curve ball, but a really educational day for me to deal with some of those interactions and see when those soft skills really count.

I also did not expect to improve upon my public speaking skills, but I got plenty of time to practice that during our venue walkthrough speeches and providing accessibility training to our technicians.
I am so grateful for the experience because I am already implementing the skills I have picked up on my upcoming projects and sandra is still open to answering my questions and providing support to my career even after the training period is over. sandra and I did not really know each other before this mentorship so I am glad she took this chance on me because one the most valuable things I have come out of this experience with is getting to know her.

Related Reading:

The next application deadline for the Professional Theatre Training Program is October 3, 2016.

Learn more about Theatre Ontario's Professional Theatre Training Program

Theatre Ontario’s Professional Theatre Training Program is funded by the Ontario Arts Council, an agency of the Government of Ontario.

Stories from the Professional Theatre Training Program: Sebastian Marziali

Our Professional Theatre Training Program (PTTP) offers financial support for unique and flexible training with a chosen mentor in any theatrical discipline (except performance.)

Sebastian Marziali will train in scenography with Trevor Schwellnus at Aluna Theatre in Toronto


(August 8, 2016) I am looking forward to start work with Trevor Schwellnus exploring the art of scenography. As I begin, we are jumping right into things as we develop the festival plot for RUTAS panamericanas running October 5-16 where I will be Assistant Lighting Designer. From there we will be looking at the design for new Aluna works in progress and a variety of shows that Trevor has lined up as an independent designer.

I’ve worked with Trevor in the past focused on directing but questions of design were always central in what we were working on. As I engaged more and more with Aluna, in particular designing surtitles for a few of their shows, I became more curious about taking a deeper look at design. I have always had an interest in design due to a background in the visual arts and I am always moved by Trevor’s designs in particular. His work makes clear to me that the physical environment in which a performance exists is of equal importance to every other aspect on stage. When executed effectively the lighting and set-design of a piece exists as another character that inspires and responds to the actors on stage.

I am really excited to be able to dedicate the time and attention to really understand an aspect of theatre which has always enticed me and for which I have many theatrical questions. Trevor’s work inspires me to look at the theatre from a different angle and I can think of no one better to help teach me the technical aspects, which I lack, but more importantly push me towards the artistic questions that can be asked using design as a basis. I am walking in with enthusiasm and a hunger to really dig into a new outlook and set of skills that I will carry forward into the work that I do.

The next application deadline for the Professional Theatre Training Program is October 3, 2016.

Learn more about Theatre Ontario's Professional Theatre Training Program

Theatre Ontario’s Professional Theatre Training Program is funded by the Ontario Arts Council, an agency of the Government of Ontario.

Stories from the Professional Theatre Training Program: Miranda Bouchard

Our Professional Theatre Training Program (PTTP) offers financial support for unique and flexible training with a chosen mentor in any theatrical discipline (except performance.)

Miranda Bouchard trained in design with Ruth Howard at Jumblies Theatre.

What have you achieved and learned over the course of your mentorship?


I’ve been mentoring with Ruth Howard, Founding Artistic Director of Jumblies Theatre (Toronto), learning about design for community-engaged theatre. We’ve had in-person visits to Jumblies Theatre and its offshoot companies (Arts4All, Community Arts Guild, MABELLEarts and Making Room Community Arts) and to my home company in Algoma, Thinking Rock Community Arts (TRCA). I feel my twin desires to gain the skills necessary to be the lead designer for the Rivers Speak (the multi-year community play project that TRCA is engaged in) and to further develop my skills and style as a community-engaged artist and facilitator have been fulfilled. Over these months I’ve been granted opportunities for hands-on learning in a supportive and collegial environment, which has made my PTTP experience enriching and fulfilling.

Earth Day tree planting at the Apple Shaver House,
Broadacres Park, with MABELLEarts, April 2016.
(Photo: MABELLEarts)
I’ve learned that there are many ways to design a community-engaged performance – and gained insight into the kind of processes I’m most attracted to, ideas to incorporate and adapt, as well as the types of considerations that need to be made when involving community members as integral collaborators, co-creators and contributors. Training opportunities (Jumblies Theatre’s Artfare Essentials, Humber College’s Puppetry Intensive, and a Clay & Paper giant puppet workshop), participation in and guest facilitation of workshops and other kinds of activities, attendance at performances and events (Clay and Paper’s Day of Delight, Mind of a Snail Puppet Co. at the Toronto Fringe Festival, and a MABELLEarts’ Iftar Night) and experimenting with design ideas and prototypes in my own studio have opened my eyes to a myriad of possibilities and tools. Ruth and I have developed a living production plan for the Rivers Speak and she’s been supporting me in compiling ideas and inspirations for its design. We’ve also discussed how the context, needs, stories, protocols, and other facets of a community and time can, and should, inform and become part of the design of a production. This has all been especially helpful, approaching community-engaged theatre from my perspective as a visual artist. Another special activity during this time, playing on my interests in community-engaged practice and exhibition design, was learning more from the Community Arts Guild about the design and mounting of their annual evolving gallery, Interlacing: Weaving Stories of East Scarborough.

How do you feel you have grown in your chosen discipline?

Humber College Puppetry Intensive, June 2016.
(Photo: A. Marcus Raja)
In all the ways outlined above. I wrapped up my mentorship with Ruth by designing and facilitating a five-day, process-based puppetry workshop. I was able to call up what I’d learned during this immersive time with Ruth and the Jumblies, marrying the design of the objects with activity designs the group was able to carry through and enjoy in the process. I can tell, having done this, that I’ve grown as a facilitator and community artist. I’m more familiar and comfortable now with the inherent tension of being a creative leader in a collaborative, co-creative situation. I’ve found a way to manage my shyness when I’m facilitating, to stay organized so the activity flows along, and to plan the activity’s objectives while embracing emergence in the process. I’ve learned that one key to designing manageable and exciting process-based collaborative making activities is to pre-test and prototype. Importantly, I’ve learned to keep asking questions (and not to be afraid to ask for support!). Time with Ruth, the Jumblies and the Offshoot companies has taught me a lot about previous projects and productions, how they came to be – how the overall design and aesthetic developed and changed over time based on ideas and necessity - and this has provided great perspective for me, going in to my first community-engaged production.

How has your relationship with your mentor developed?

Ruth Howard, Miranda Bouchard and past PTTP trainee Robin
Sutherland at AlgomaTrad, August 2016. (Photo: S. Hodge)
I’d spent time with Ruth through TRCA in advance of this mentorship, though I know this PTTP study has strengthened and deepened that relationship. I’ve enjoyed time getting to know Ruth one-on-one as well as in the organizational context, now. She has encouraged and challenged me, as an artist, to gather and test ideas, concepts and curiosities. She’s provided lots of support while giving me the space to try things out, to get things right and to make mistakes. I’ve learned a lot from Ruth through conversations we’ve had, by watching her in action, by actively participating at Jumblies. I’ve developed a much deeper appreciation for the work she and the Jumblies have done (and continue to do) and the impact that work has had (and continues to have). Ruth’s stamina and sustained dedication, her passion for people and community-engaged theatre is admirable and inspiring. I’m glad we’ll continue to connect as the Rivers Speak – a project Ruth and the Jumblies have been involved in since early days – moves toward production, in September 2017.

Where you think this training will take you as you continue your career?


A fact that’s continued to surface through my time with Ruth and the Jumblies is that there’s always more to learn in and about community-engaged theatre and visual practice. The PTTP mentorship has given me a taste of what’s still to know, and ideas for directions to move in from here – and I’m anxious to pursue this. Training I’ve received, supported by this grant through Theatre Ontario, will continue to inform my career and direct my learning for years to come. The connections, self-awareness and understanding I’ve developed are invaluable to me.

Related Reading:


The next application deadline for the Professional Theatre Training Program is October 3, 2016.

Learn more about Theatre Ontario's Professional Theatre Training Program

Theatre Ontario’s Professional Theatre Training Program is funded by the Ontario Arts Council, an agency of the Government of Ontario.

Wednesday, 21 September 2016

Browsing Our Bulletin Board

Coming Up from Theatre Ontario

Check out all of our upcoming Career Stream and Creator Stream workshops.

Upcoming on The Bulletin Board

One Song Glory at Acting Up Stage Company
  • Ottawa Little Theatre’s Ensemble Storytelling workshop with Jillian Keiley is September 24.
  • Playwrights Guild of Canada’s Exploring Dynamic Playwriting workshops with Brad Fraser begin September 26.
  • TAPA's Standard First Aid with CPR/AED workshop is on September 26 and 27.
  • Deadline to apply for Ontario150 Grants Partnership Program for engaging, enabling, and empowering youth is September 30.
  • Deadline for nominations for the Canada Council’s John Hobday Awards in Arts Management is September 30.
  • Deadline to sign-up for Acting Up Stage Company’s One Song Glory (free musical theatre intensive for youth 13 to 19) pre-intensive workshops is September 30.

New on The Bulletin Board

  • Thousand Islands Playhouse invites submissions for its Ontario Arts Council Theatre Creators Reserve from artists, with particular interest in pieces that originate in their region, explore the history of the region, or deals with themes relevant to the community. The application deadline is October 1.
  • Artscape invites proposals from prospective tenants for a space available at Artscape Youngplace. The application deadline is October 7.
  • Bursaries are available for those interested in attending SPARC—Symposium for Performing Arts in Rural Communities, running October 27 to 30.
  • Young People’s Theatre invites submissions for its Ontario Arts Council Theatre Creators Reserve from artists who are creating work for young audiences. The application deadline is November 25.
  • Shaw Festival invites submissions for its Ontario Arts Council Theatre Creators Reserve from artists with proposals that engage in the world of the Shaw Festival’s mandate, and plays that are challenging, subversive and political. The application deadline is January 9.

Check out these items, and other postings from our members.
Theatre Ontario individual members can also access Auditions, Job Postings and Discount Ticket Offers on our Theatre Ontario Individual Member Resources on our website

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Save the Date for Next Generation Showcase

Theatre Ontario's Next Generation Showcase 2017 will be held on January 15 and 16, 2017 at the Young Centre for Performing Arts.

Theatre Ontario’s Next Generation Showcase is our annual event that provides graduating students of post-secondary conservatory theatre training programs across Ontario with the opportunity to audition for industry professionals. The event is attended by artistic directors, freelance directors, casting directors, and agents who are signed to the EIC or members of TAMAC.

Besides the students showcasing their talent in this intimate venue, we will also have several opportunities for students, faculty, and industry professionals to meet and network with each other at our networking parties.


Monday, 19 September 2016

ONstage Openings for the week of September 19

This week’s openings on Ontario’s stages
ONstage Opening in Central Ontario
Proof at Northumberland Players (Cobourg)
Marley Budreau, Christopher Sharp

In Eastern Ontario

Sep. 20, The Last Romance at Kanata Theatre (Ottawa)
Sep. 21, Spring Awakening at Orpheus Musical Theatre Society (Ottawa)
Sep. 22, The Gravitational Pull of Bernice Trimble at Great Canadian Theatre Company (Ottawa), with previews from Sep. 20 
Sep. 22, Over the River and Through the Woods at Studio Theatre Perth
Sep. 24, You Are Here, A New Musical at Thousand Islands Playhouse (Gananoque), with a preview on Sep. 23

In Southwestern Ontario

Sep. 20, Les Miserables School Edition (High School Project) at The Grand Theatre (London)
Sep. 22, Lucky Stiff at Kitchener-Waterloo Little Theatre
Sep. 23, Blind Date at Theatre Aquarius (Hamilton), with previews from Sep. 21
Sep. 23, Trying at Players' Guild of Hamilton

In Toronto

Sep. 21, Noises Off at Soulpepper Theatre, in previews
Sep. 22, Blind Date at Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, with previews from Sep. 20
ONstage Now Playing in Toronto
Tideline at Hart House Theatre
Madeleine Heaven, Kwaku Okyere, Eric Mrakovcic
Background: Danny Ghantous, Harrison Tanner
Photo by Scott Gorman
Sep. 22, One Thing Leads to Another at Young People's Theatre
Sep. 23, Hosanna at Soulpepper Theatre, in previews

In Central Ontario

Sep. 20, Beneath Springhill: The Maurice Ruddick Story at Theatre Collingwood
Sep. 23, Proof at Northumberland Players (Cobourg)


For all the theatre playing across Ontario, visit Theatre Ontario’s ONstage theatre listings on our website

Friday, 16 September 2016

Ontario Off Stage

by Brandon Moore, Community Theatre and Communications Manager

Conversation Starters

Cahoots Theatre's DATT - the Deaf Artists and Theatres Toolkit 

Behind the Scenes at Ontario’s Theatres


In Case You Missed It

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

Browsing Our Bulletin Board

Coming Up from Theatre Ontario

Check out all of our upcoming Career Stream and Creator Stream workshops.

Upcoming on The Bulletin Board

  • Deadline to apply for Ontario150 Community Capital Program grants is today.
  • Deadline to apply for Ontario Trillium Foundation Seed Grants is today.
  • Deadline to apply for Ontario Arts Council’s grants for Aboriginal Artists in Communities, Aboriginal Arts Projects, Deaf and Disability Arts Projects, National and International Touring, and Ontario Touring is September 15.
  • Deadline to apply for Canada Council’s grants for Theatre: Project Grants to Service Organizations, Artists and Community Collaboration Program in Theatre, Grants to Theatre Artists: Individual Creation, Playwright-in-Residency, Artist-in-Residency and Professional Development, Theatre Production Project Grants for Emerging Artists, and Theatre Production Project Grants for Established Artists is September 15.
  • Deadline to register your Ontario Culture Days free interactive arts and culture event is September 19.
  • WorkInCulture is hosting a free “Job Hunting” webinar with Sandy Lee for arts administrators and job hunters on September 21.

New on The Bulletin Board

  • Toronto Arts Council invites applications for the Artists in the Library program, a multidisciplinary residency grant for artists, collectives and organizations to present programs in selected Toronto Public Libraries. The application deadline is October 3.
  • The Paprika Festival invites submissions for the 16/17 Festival’s artistic programs, including Paprika Productions, Playwriting, Creators Unit, and Paprika's Regent Collective (ages 15-21), Advisory Board (ages 21-25), and Director's Lab (ages 15-30). The application deadline is October 7.
Check out these items, and other postings from our members.
Theatre Ontario individual members can also access Auditions, Job Postings and Discount Ticket Offers on our Theatre Ontario Individual Member Resources on our website

Tuesday, 13 September 2016

Stories from the Summer Theatre Intensive: “Directions on Directing” with Andrew Lamb

By Ironda Campbell (Morgantown, West Virginia, USA)

My experience at Theatre Ontario’s Directions on Directing: From Page to Stage intensive was pretty awesome. As a new playwright, (for some time now) I have been in search of workshops, seminars, and/or intensives that will hone my skills and insight in all things ‘theatre’. I want to produce and direct my own plays. It’s a tall order, but procuring the necessary mentoring and coaching that can come from offerings like those presented by Theatre Ontario is a big head start.

My trek began with an internet search of theatre offerings in the form of workshops, seminars or intensives in North America…something I could engage in during summers, breaks or on weekends. What followed was a process by some entities that invited applications for their perusal, all followed by emails that announced that their classes were filled and feel free to apply again… Then I saw the Theatre Ontario website and course offerings. I was excited to see the description of the work that would be undertaken in the Directing intensive. I applied and held my breath, hoping that I wouldn’t receive another classes are filled; please feel free to apply again… response. What’d ya know? There was room in the session, and I was on my way!

At first I thought, this thing is in Canada…should I travel that far? I weighed the logistics of my trip against the training opportunity and gave it a nod. Mapquest and I drove from Morgantown, West Virginia to Peterborough, Ontario. I got lost just past downtown Toronto, but the people were friendly and helpful with directions.

Ironda and classmates 
I can assure you that the guided instructions and work that I received from Andrew Lamb was worth all my efforts. The design of the intensive allowed for everyone in the cohort to direct their own chosen pieces. Each cohort member also served as actors in another director’s piece. I loved the work, the instruction, and the camaraderie that came from collaborating with fellow directors. This was good stuff! 

In short, I would gladly do it all over again…and, probably not get lost this time. I look forward to connecting with other theatre mentoring workshops/classes/intensives offered by Theatre Ontario in the coming years. Thank you, my new friends!

Monday, 12 September 2016

ONstage Openings for the week of September 12

This week’s openings on Ontario’s stages

In Central Ontario

Sep. 13, Wake Me When It's Over! The 12-Step Musical at Gravenhurst Opera House

In Eastern Ontario

Sep. 14, Boeing Boeing at Ottawa Little Theatre

In South Central Ontario

Sep. 14, Looking at Markham Little Theatre
Sep. 16, Love Letters at Theatre Aurora
Sep. 16, Trying at The Curtain Club (Richmond Hill)

In Southwestern Ontario

ONstage Now Playing in Toronto
Les Belles-Soeurs at The Village Players, Bloor West Village
Photo by Jennifer Etches
Sep. 13, Red Rock Diner at Drayton Entertainment: St. Jacobs Schoolhouse Theatre
Sep. 15, The Book of Esther at Simcoe Little Theatre
Sep. 16, The Game’s Afoot at Cambridge Community Players

In Toronto

Sep. 16, Tideline at Hart House Theatre
Sep. 16, This at Alumnae Theatre Company


For all the theatre playing across Ontario, visit Theatre Ontario’s ONstage theatre listings on our website

Friday, 9 September 2016

Ontario Off Stage

Corrine Koslo and Benedict Campbell with the cast of
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

at Shaw Festival. Photo by Emily Cooper.
by Brandon Moore, Community Theatre and Communications Manager

Conversation Starters


Behind the Scenes at Ontario’s Theatres


TO Toasts


In Case You Missed It

Thursday, 8 September 2016

Last Call for all Bowlers, Supporters, and Friends for our Bowl-a-Thon

Rachel’s Rapscallions are ready to bowl. Are you?
Come out and join one of our four teams for the inaugural Theatre Ontario Bowl-a-thon at the Danforth Bowl on September 17, 2016! Help us raise funds towards the production costs for our annual Next Generation Showcase, a premiere event where performing arts graduates audition for industry professionals.

You could win exciting ticket prizes from the Canadian Opera Company, Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Factory Theatre, Tarragon Theatre, Young People’s Theatre and the Stratford Festival. Or admission to the AGO, CN Tower, a tour of the Steamwhistle Brewery and much more.

Don’t miss out on the fun!

Wednesday, 7 September 2016

Browsing Our Bulletin Board

Coming Up from Theatre Ontario

Check out all of our upcoming Career Stream and Creator Stream workshops.

Upcoming on The Bulletin Board

  • The Estelle Craig ACT II Studio is hosting a Studio Information Day for prospective theatre students 50+ on September 8.
    ACT II Studio is hosting an Information Day for prospective students.
  • Deadline to apply for Canada Council’s Leadership for Change: Grants for Organizational Development is September 10.
  • Deadline to submit proposals for Ontario Culture Days 2017 Routes and Roots commissions is September 12.
  • Deadline to apply for Ontario150 Community Capital Program grants is September 14.
  • Deadline to apply for Ontario Trillium Foundation Seed Grants is September 14.
  • Deadline to apply for Ontario Arts Council’s grants for Aboriginal Artists in Communities, Aboriginal Arts Projects, Deaf and Disability Arts Projects, National and International Touring, and Ontario Touring is September 15.
  • Deadline to apply for Canada Council’s grants (Project Grants to Service Organizations, Artists and Community Collaboration Program in Theatre, Grants to Theatre Artists: Individual Creation, Playwright-in-Residency, Artist-in-Residency and Professional Development, Theatre Production Project Grants for Emerging Artists, and Theatre Production Project Grants for Established Artists) is September 15.

New on The Bulletin Board

  • Playwrights Guild of Canada’s “Exploring Dynamic Playwriting” workshop with Brad Fraser begins September 26.
Check out these items, and other postings from our members.
Theatre Ontario individual members can also access Auditions, Job Postings and Discount Ticket Offers on our Theatre Ontario Individual Member Resources on our website

Tuesday, 6 September 2016

ONstage Openings for the week of September 6

This week’s openings on Ontario’s stages

In Toronto

Sep. 9, Les Belles-Soeurs at The Village Players, Bloor West Village
Sep. 9, The Psychic at Scarborough Theatre Guild

In Eastern Ontario
ONstage Opening in Eastern Ontario
Das Ding (The Thing) at Thousand Islands Playhouse
Qasim Khan
Photo by James Heaslip

Sep. 10, Jonas and Barry in the Home at Upper Canada Playhouse (Morrisburg), with previews from Sep. 8
Sep. 10, Das Ding (The Thing) at Thousand Islands Playhouse (Gananoque), with a preview on Sep. 9

In Southwestern Ontario

Sep. 9, I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change at Theatre Ancaster (Hamilton)


For all the theatre playing across Ontario, visit Theatre Ontario’s ONstage theatre listings on our website