Théâtre la Seizième is seeking a new team member to take on the role of Communications Officer.
This person will be responsible for developing communication strategies and the necessary tools for the promotion of the company. Bilingual, creative, strategic and passionate for the arts, the candidate will be responsible for public relations, maintaining virtual communities, and supporting the image of the company. The ideal candidate must have strong writing skills as well as training and pertinent experience in communications and marketing.
We provide a stimulating working environment at the Maison de la francophonie with competitive benefits.
REMUNERATION: $20 to $23 an hour, depending on experience (30 hours per week). The person responsible for communications will be asked to work some hours on weekends and evenings.
HIRING DATE: August 21st, 2017
CONTRACT LENGTH: until August 31st, 2018, renewable
DEADLINE FOR APPLICATION: July 11th, 2017, at 4pm (Pacific Time)
For more information please click here.
Two weeks ago, we welcomed our new Administrative Director, Béatrice Crozet. Béatrice has been in Vancouver for five years now. Originally from France, this arts and floristry aficionado tells us more about herself using a Proust-like questionnaire.
And if you were a flower?
A garden rose, because of its summer bouquet and abundance of petals.
And if you were a word?
Travel for the connotation of discovery.
And if you were a film?
Les Amours Imaginaires by Xavier Dolan for the poetry and the soundtrack.
And if you were a band?
Caravan Palace because of the energy and the chance to swing dance all night.
And if you were a book?
The Celestine Prophecy by James Redfield for having opened my eyes to the spirituality of Energy.
And if you were a historical figure?
John Muir for having explored the vastness of America and for being among the first people to introduce the concept of defending Nature.
And if you had a superpower, what would it be, and how would you use it?
I would teleport myself to people and places all over the world whenever I wanted.
And if you were a time of day?
The setting sun, because of its gentle warm light that transitions to the end of the day.
And if you were a drink?
Gin &Tonic, because it’s like fun lemonade.
Welcome to Théâtre la Seizième, Béatrice!
This is the final week of a very successful tour for the team of Bello. Co-produced by Concrete Theatre and L’Unithéâtre, and presented in British Columbia by Théâtre la Seizième, Bello also toured in Alberta.
Although the performances in BC were only in French, the Alberta tour was presented in both official languages; all this ensured by the same cast. A truly incredible achievement for the team!
In the space of 3 months, no less than 80 schools in the two provinces hosted this show, reaching nearly 17,000 children.
The play tells the story of Berhnard who lives with his uncle and auntand and who, every day, has to walk five kilometres to get to school. Along his route is Nettie’s house, an old woman whom the whole village calls a witch. One night during a terrible snowstorm, Berhnard loses his way and is rescued by none other than Nettie! The boy listens to the story of the widow and that of her son Bello who also lost his way in the snow and never came back. Their unique friendship allows them to reconcile with their past and transform their present.
© Emily Cooper
It’s already the end of the road for the team of L’Élection. The team travelled a good portion of the province, visited 25 high schools, and performed in front of almost 5,500 students!
By examining the mechanisms of the democratic process, the play questions its limitations: how far is it acceptable to fight for an idea that seems just? Are we able to stop ourselves when that limit is reached? Constructed around major themes such as minority rights, feminism, the environment and access to education, the play is intended to awaken political awareness and the fragile notion of equality.
© Emily Cooper
For its productions for young audiences, Théâtre la Seizième develops a teacher’s guide to support the students before, during, and after the show. It gives the students tools to better understand the creation of a theatrical work and allows them to reach a deeper understanding of the play’s main themes. It’s a practical way for the students to express their ideas and opinions in French.
L’Élection was created in collaboration with Green Thumb Theatre as part of Théâtre la Seizième’s dramaturgical development program for British-Columbia’s drama writers. Théâtre la Seizième asks for submissions, in English or in French, from young artists and then supports them through the writing process. The goal is to eventually present this new production. This component is part of a more comprehensive program of training, resourcing, and dramaturgic development for performing artists. Théâtre la Seizième’s goal is to support theatre training in Western Canada and local theatre creation.
Théâtre la Seizième is seeking a new team member to take on the role of Administrative Director.
The candidate will work closely with the Artistic and General Director to insure the healthy management of the company and its development on a short, medium, and long-term basis. The candidate will also help with the development of important partnerships and the exploration of diverse sources of revenue. Bilingual, the ideal candidate must have strong analytic and administrative skills, and pertinent experience in the management of non-profit organizations.
We provide a stimulating working environment at the Maison de la francophonie with competitive benefits.
REMUNERATION: $42,000 to $48,000 based on experience (35 hrs/week)
HIRING DATE: May 1st, 2017
DEADLINE FOR APPLICATION: April 17, 2017
For more information please click here.
|Shizuka Kai, the set designer for L’Élection, presents Zoetrope: The Curiosity of Puppet Oddities, at Studio 58. This is the first time she directs a production (co-directed with Stephanie Elgersma). In this mysterious world, the directors use three-person, shadow, and object puppetry to explore the curiosity of puppet oddities through a story of love and death. This production is an opportunity for Shizuka to live her other great passion, puppets. From March 27 to April 2.|
|The actress Emilie Leclerc (Bonjour, là, bonjour, Mathieu Mathématiques) is part of the cast of Redpatch, a production created to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Vimy Ridge Battle. Redpath is a historical drama that focuses on a young Métis soldier from the Nuu-chah-nulth nation of Vancouver Island who volunteers to fight for Canada in the First World War. The production will be at the House Theatre (North Vancouver) from March 29th to April 9th, and then at Studio 16 (Vancouver) from April 12th to April 16th.|
|Rachel Peake, the director of L’Élection and Selfie, takes on the challenge of one of Mozart’s classic operas, with the direction of The Marriage of Figaro, produced by the Vancouver Opera. For this monumental task, she is seconded by another of our artists, Drew Facey (Bonjour,là, bonjour, À toi, pour toujours, ta Marie-Lou), who is designing the set. Of note, the costumes are being designed by the Canadian fashion star, Sid Neigum. At the Vancouver Playhouse from April 30th to May 16th.|
|Itai Erdal (Straight Jacket Winter), known for his lighting designs, is now working for the Winnipeg Jewish Theatre (until April 1st), as an author and actor. Presented as a documentary, Itai tells the story of the last moments of his mother’s life, (she was suffering from lung cancer) in How to Disappear Completely. This autobiographical play has toured internationally for many years.|
|The actress Sabrina Auclair (L’Élection), a graduate of Studio 58, will present her Solo Show. A tradition at the acclaimed theatre school, these self-written, self-directed and self-performed solo works are presented to invited audiences at the end of each term. We are looking forward to what Sabrina is going to offer us!|
|Joey Lespérance (Bonjour, là, bonjour, À toi, pour toujours, ta Marie-Lou) will be part of the cast of the Hunger Room produced by the Staircase Theatre. A dark thriller where suspicion reigns in a suburban high school after students have received mysterious notes written with blood. This is a play that explores loneliness, disconnection, and violence. At the Pal Studio Theatre, from May 24th to June 9th.|
Between 2 rehearsal sessions, we met Gilles Poulin-Denis who talked to us about Michel Tremblay’s play, his Vancouverite collaborators and his new duties as the head of the biennale Zones Théâtre in Ottawa.
For many years, Craig Holzschuh (the previous Artistic Director of Théâtre la Seizième, NDLR), dreamed of producing Bonjour, là, bonjour. He offered you this opportunity before leaving the company. What do you think attracted him to this play?
I think Craig was attracted, amongst other reasons, to the many complexities that are dealt with in this play. It has a very dense script and it requires a very soft touch to present a clear vision to audiences. Different times and spaces overlap and create great challenges! It’s unbelievable that in 2017, when a dramaturge puts forward a project with overlapping temporal complexities, it’s described as innovative, yet Michel Tremblay wrote Bonjour, là, bonjour 40 years ago.
I know this play was exciting for Craig because of its large cast. Given the restraints of our local artistic scene, we don’t often allow ourselves to present a play that demands such a significant investment.
This is a play that is rarely produced. It is renowned for being difficult to stage. What are its challenges?
The biggest challenge was to clarify the theatrical relationship with the audience. We are used to realistic plays where place, time, and action are linear. In this case, the play occurs in a universe where the protagonist Serge (NDLR) moves between 5 different time frames at the same time.
Also, there are a number of theories about this play. Michel Tremblay purposely created non-spoken issues in his text. We had to do detective work in order to set out the chronology of the story, to establish the relationships between the characters, to find out why the characters react in such a fashion, at that moment, etc. Serge has a very complex relationship with his sisters and his aunts, but he also has a very strong connection with his father. It is definitely a challenge to explore all of these dynamics at the same time and to explain them on stage. It sounds “airy fairy”, but there is a lot of information to transmit!
Also, this is the company’s second Tremblay production in two years, therefore another challenge was not to be repetitive. I wanted to create a different theatrical experience from what was created by À toi, pour toujours, ta Marie-Lou so that audiences could experience Tremblay’s universe in a different way.
Tremblay’s body of work is known as mainly being about women. However, in the case of Bonjour, là, bonjour, he tackles the difficulty of communication between a father and son. Given that the female characters almost overwhelm the story, how did you manage to highlight this relationship?
For me, the relationship between father and son is very clear in the play. The women talk a lot about day-to-day life, while Serge and Armand try to communicate profound ideas to each other. The tone is different: there’s truth and simplicity in the dialogue between the men – an economy of words – compared with the female characters who talk a lot and rarely listen to each other. The actors have to perform with care and precision, not unlike musicians in an orchestra. I was very specific about the movement of the performers within the space. There’s a physical distance between the father and son, which means they cannot connect, or communicate.
This production has an impressive cast of 8 actors. Was it difficult to bring together so many people?
We are blessed to have so many excellent Francophone actors in Vancouver. The cast is made-up of well-known artists to la Seizième audiences like Joey Lespérance (À toi, pour toujours, ta Marie-Lou, Porc-Épic), Lyne Barnabé (Le Périmètre, Lapin blanc, Lapin rouge), Siona Gareau-Brennan (À toi, pour toujours, ta Marie-Lou, Selfie, Statu Quo), Vincent Leblanc-Beaudoin (Selfie, Mathieu Mathématiques) and Émilie Leclerc (L’Enfant-Problème, Mathieu Mathématiques). These artists work regularly for la Seizième, but also work on exciting personal projects. Bonjour, là, bonjour, allows us to work, once again, with renowned Thérèse Champagne on the stage of Studio 16. We welcome Annie Lefebvre to our team, an excellent actor who lived in Ottawa, and Leanna Brodie, a Francophile with enormous experience, who is performing in French for the first time. I’m happy to introduce both these artists to la Seizième audiences. All and all, these are signs of a vibrant artistic community.
We know that you have been offered the position of Artistic Director at La biennale Zones Théâtrales in Ottawa. Congratulations! What does this mean for the next step in your career?
I’m incredibly happy, and really excited. The biennale is an event that I have been involved with in the past few years. At first, I was an audience member and then a number of my works were presented. I feel honoured because, all of a sudden, I am the Artistic Director at the helm of a festival where I was given many opportunities as an artist and a writer. I see this as a chance to invest in my career at a another level. Within the last few years, I’ve had terrific professional experiences that have allowed me to have an international career as well as opportunities all over this country. I hope to use some of these skills for my new path, and to continue to work with the Canadian theatrical community.
While waiting for the Premiere on January, 25th, here are 10 insights about the show that will make you appreciate the performance even more.
1) The stories are true!
Cuisine & Confessions was built on the real-life personal stories of each cast member. Creation began with extensive story-telling sessions, and directors Shana Carroll and Sébastien Soldevila extracted facts, themes, and images and wove them throughout each act, all based on these real stories.
2) All music is original.
The entire soundtrack was created specifically for Cuisine & Confessions. Notable New York jazz club owner Spike Wilner collaborated with Soldevila who also serves as a musical director, in Montreal, for extensive recording sessions, providing a bank of music from which to choose.
3) The show has been performed in 7 languages.
Cuisine & Confessions has travelled the globe. Wherever it has been performed, it has been translated into the local language. To date, the show has been presented in English, Italian, Spanish, Russian, French, Swedish, and German.
4) All food is prepared live on stage.
Food preparation begins on stage during the 30-minute pre-show and continues during the performance, at various times with assistance from audience members. From the moment the house opens through to the final bows, food is always cooking – from an omelet, to vegetable pasta, to the signature banana bread.
5) Montreal chef Alex Winniki helped refine the recipes.
Not only did Winniki help refine the recipes used in the show, he also gave weekly cooking lessons to the original cast, sharing pro tips in chopping, slicing, dicing, and more. Each cast member was given a chef’s knife to practice with at home.
6) The set is inspired by the cast’s home kitchens.
To create the set, scenic designer Ana Capellutto had each artist share photos of their childhood kitchens, their current kitchens, and their “dream kitchens”, greatly inspiring the final design. She also asked each performer to bring a personal item to keep somewhere on the set to help create this intimate kitchen space. The set continues to tour with these personal items.
7) Refrigerator postcards are real.
The cast has collected postcards from every city they’ve toured and placed them on the set’s refrigerator, making it an ever-evolving set piece.
8) They keep a “to do” list, too.
Observant theatregoers will see a “to-do list” written out on a chalkboard as part of the kitchen set (as if a grocery list). This is actually a list of numbers performed in the show, and cast members cross off items as they are completed during each performance.
9) A child’s game inspired lyrics of final song.
The odd phrase “chop chop miam miam” came from a tickling game the directors had with their 5-year-old daughter. During the show’s creation, the expression was used as a call and response kind of game, and became the show’s accidental mantra. When the cast turned it into a song, at first it was a joke – until everyone decided it was the best way to close the show.
10) Cast members take turns washing the dishes.
Every family has its own way of sharing responsibilities, and the Cuisine & Confessions family is no different. Cooking creates a mess, and at the end of each performance, a different cast member cleans up the dishes in the working on-stage sink, adhering to a scheduled rotation.
Wednesday October 19th, le programme d’immigration francophone de la Fédération des Francophones de la Colombie-Britanique (FFCB) is hosting a very special evening for the production of Straight Jacket Winter. After the performance, members of the staff, the actors, and the audience will be invited to have a conversation about the themes presented in the play. Le programme d’immigration francophone is offering a very generous offer of tickets of 21$ for the performance. 30% off the regular ticket price. An excellent reason to come to see the play on that night.
How to take advantage of the offer ?
As simply as putting “PLUIE16” code in the reservation form here (at the right date)
|Julie Trépanier (À toi pour toujours, ta Marie-Lou, Selfie, Deux ans de votre vie), who you will see next week performing in Straight Jacket Winter at Studio 16, and Marie Farsi, last year’s recipient of a grant by the Fondation pour l’Avancement du théâtre francophone au Canada, will both participate in the stage de formation continue de l’ATFC (the continuing training program by the ATFC) at the Banff Centre in November. Congratulations to both of them!!|
|The Director Rachel Peake (Selfie) and the actress Sabrina Auclair, who will be members of the cast of our Season’s young audiences production, L’Élection, are also part of Angels in America which is playing these days at Langara’s Studio 58. Set in New-York City during the 80’s, the play takes us in the heart of the AIDS epidemic.|
|The author Gilles Poulin-Denis was invited to Limoges last month for a reading of his play Statu Quo, (produced in 2012 by Théâtre la Seizième), at the Francophonies en Limousin event. At the performance, he was interviewed by Nadine Chausse, the festival coordinator. Gilles is the co-author of Straight Jacket Winter, which will be produced next week at Studio 16.|
|Vincent Leblanc-Beaudoin (Mathieu Mathématiques, Selfie) was in Toronto the last few days to work on The Stranger, an immersive theatrical project that is performed on the street and in which the audience member becomes the protagonist. While moving around the city, the audience member-actor, follows « strangers » who give hints about a story that mixes reality with fiction. Vincent will also be a member of the cast of Bonjour, là, bonjour next February.|
|The actress Leanna Brodie, who performed in the play And Bella Sang With Us by Sally Stubbs, was selected for the very coveted Public Market Pick of the Fringe. Audiences were thrilled that an extra performance was given after the Fringe Festival. Leanna will also be part of the cast of Bonjour, là, bonjour, which will be produced at Studio 16 next February.|
|The show-event Cuisine & Confession, by the famous company 7 Fingers will be presented in November for an entire month at the Princess of Wales Theatre in Toronto. They will then come to Vancouver for 6 performances at the Vancouver playhouse next January.|