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JOIN OUR TEAM!

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.

 

DID YOU KNOW? – SPRING 2017

Shizuka Kai

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.

Emilie Leclerc

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

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

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.

Sabrina Auclair

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

Joey Lespérance (Bonjour, là, bonjourÀ 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.

Meet the Director of Bonjour, là, bonjour

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.

10 INSIGHTS ABOUT CUISINE & CONFESSIONS

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.

Pain aux bananes

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.

Behind the scenes with the production of Straight Jacket Winter

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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)

Did you know?

Julie Trépanier et Marie Farsi

Julie Trépanier (À toi pour toujours, ta Marie-LouSelfieDeux 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!!

Angels in America au Studio 58

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.

Gilles Poulin-Denis

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

Vincent Leblanc-Beaudoin (Mathieu MathématiquesSelfie) 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.

Leanna Brodie

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.

Cuisines&Confessions par Les 7 Doigts

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.

5 good reasons to subscribe

You’re unsure about getting a subscription to Théâtre la Seizième, here are our best arguments about why you should.  C’mon, you know you want to!


1. A made-in-Vancouver success story

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Not every day do one of our productions get invited to the prestigious Carrefour international de théâtre de Québec, and yet, last spring, there was Straight Jacket Winter among the Marie Brassards and Joël Pommerats of this world. Described by critics as “a theatrical gem”, this inventive and delicate show will be performed across the country, including at the distinguished National Arts Centre. It would be a shame to miss such a successful, local production made just for you, no?


2. The return of the 7 Fingers

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In 2015, we presented 4 performances of the 7 Fingers’ production of Séquence8 at the Vancouver Playhouse – an explosive mix of circus, theatre and laid-back humour that was a smash hit. Tickets sold out so quickly that we had to add another performance in extremis! This time around, you have six performances of Cuisine & Confessions to choose from. And subscribers get the best tickets at the best prices.


3. Michel Tremblay’s favourite

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Because it’s so difficult to stage, Bonjour, là, bonjour has been largely absent from the theatre. That said, it’s the iconic playwright’s favourite piece: “With Bonjour, là, bonjour, I best accomplished that which I always aimed to do with my plays – stripping them down to the bare essentials.” Well said. The result is a monumental achievement.


4. Tête-à-tête with a rising star

Photo : www.lapresse.ca

You probably don’t know Jean-Philippe Lehoux, but this young playwright has become one of the darlings of Montreal’s artistic scene. This year, his plays will be presented, simultaneously, at Théâtre d’Aujourd’hui, Théâtre Denise-Pelletier, Théâtre le Clou, and la Maison théâtre. After seeing Napoléon voyage, you’ll understand why. Lehoux’s sense of humour conveys depth, and his stories unfailingly make your mind wander.


5. A Play for One Dollar

When you subscribe, you’ll save up to 30% off the regular ticket price. It’s as if we were offering you a ticket to the last show of the year for $1. Oh yes. Other perks include changing show nights for free*, as well as the chance to initiate a friend to the theatre with a half-price ticket.


Convinced? Fill in the subscription form online, or call us at 604.736.2616.

*48-hour notice required, subject to available seating.

Message from the new Artistic Director

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I am so excited to be speaking to you for the first time as Artistic and Managing Director. Taking the reins of Théâtre la Seizième is an immense privilege. Over the past six years, as the Associate Artistic and Managing Director, I have developed a deep affection for the crucial mandate of this company, the artists who possess undeniable qualities and both people and professionals, and for our curious, loyal and diverse audiences. With those feelings in tow, I accepted to follow in Craig Holzschuh’s footsteps. Craig’s work for the past 17 years has been enormously appreciated, and his legacy is substantial.

This year’s programming is among the many gifts he has left us. In it, you’ll find a national co-production on a cross-country tour; the highest number of actors we’ve ever put on a stage for an in-house production; and a show with an international flavour for which we are the sole distributor. Be it on the artistic, logistic, or organisational side, la Seizième’s 2016/17 season is one in which we expand our horizons, and assert our maturity. As an artist, I’m proud to be a part of it; as the Artistic Director, I’m moved by its audaciousness.

It is often by pushing our boundaries that we discover who we are. This is the bet that Craig made for this season, and the one that I’ve taken on as my own. I invite you to bet on us, as well, and to discover a theatrical lineup that explores something new.

We look forward to seeing you!

Esther Duquette

Join our Team!

Théâtre la Seizième is on the lookout for two new team members! We offer a stimulating work environment at la Maison de la francophonie as well as a competitive benefit package.

Administrative Director
The Administrative Director works closely with the Artistic and Managing Director in order to maintain the financial well-being of the company and help it develop in the short-, medium-, and long-term. The Administrative Director helps develop important partnerships and diversifies the revenue stream. Bilingual, the ideal candidate has a penchant for analysis, financial management and relevant experience with not-for-profit organizations.

REMUNERATION: $42,000 to $47,000 based on experience (35 hrs/week)
HIRING DATE: August 20, 2016
CONTRACT LENGTH: until June 30, 2018, renewable
For more information, click here.

Communications Coordinator
The Communications Coordinator develops communications strategies and tools for the promotion of company activities. Creative, strategic, and possessing a passion for the arts, the Communications Director coordinates with the press, maintains the company’s online presence and oversees its trademark usage. The ideal candidate is an excellent writer with relevant professional experience in communications and marketing. He or her must master the French language.

REMUNERATION: $20 to $23 per hour based on experience (30 hrs/week)
HIRING DATE: August 20, 2016
CONTRACT LENGTH: until August 30, 2017, renewable
For more information, click here.

Esther Duquette Named Artistic and Managing Director

The Board of Directors is pleased to introduce Esther Duquette as the new Artistic and Managing Director of Théâtre la Seizième. She will succeed Craig Holzschuh, who this summer will wrap up his 17-year career with the company. Esther Duquette’s mandate begins August 4th.

Esther Duquette. Photo : Julie Artacho

Esther Duquette. Photo : Julie Artacho

The selection committee recommended Esther Duquette upon the completion of a rigorous selection process. “Esther was the candidate best suited to pursue the remarkable work of these past few years. She knows every facet of Théâtre la Seizième, and she has a thorough knowledge of both the artistic milieu and francophone communities, be it at the local or national level. She will bring her vision to the artistic direction, while enhancing our past successes. We warmly welcome her to the head of the company,” explains Marie-Claude Tremblay, President of the Board of Directors.

« I hope that Théâtre la Seizième remains that privileged place where artists and the public can exchange ideas, share their vision of the world, and celebrate their culture. I want this, more than ever, to be a place that is open-minded, inspiring, thrilling and unifying,” she says. “This institution belongs to the community, and I would like patrons, artists and thinkers to engage with it. I want to personally welcome all of you to Theatre la Seizième, so that you may be stimulated, touched or transformed – even just a little – by the time you leave. »
– Esther Duquette

A graduate in Journalism from l’Université du Québec à Montréal with a major in French Literature and Theatre, Esther has been working with Théâtre la Seizième for the past six years as Associate Artistic and Managing Director, as well as Administration and Communications Director. She has consulted for Réseau des grands espaces, a member of the Table nationale sur la diffusion du théâtre de la francophonie canadienne, and has been a Board Member of the Montreal-based theatre ensemble L’homme allumette. In 2015, she received the Roland Mahé-Banque Nationale prize from the Fondation pour l’avancement du théâtre francophone au Canada. She is also the co-creator of 2PAR4, a touring company featuring original work, as well as the play Straight Jacket Winter, recently presented at the Carrefour international de théâtre de Québec. Straight Jacket Winter will open Théâtre la Seizième’s 2016-17 season.