With the beginning of the new year, the media takes a look back at 2015, and it seems that they liked what they saw here!
|In the Georgia Straight, our nine Jessie Richardson Awards (six for À toi, pour toujours, ta Marie-Lou by Michel Tremblay and three for Selfie by Christine Quintana) is among the ten most significant cultural moments of 2015, alongside the election of the Liberals and the unveiling of the plans for the new Vancouver Art Gallery.
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|Our production of Deux ans de votre vie (You Are Happy) by Rébecca Déraspe carved out a place in critic Jo Ledingham’s “Year in Theatre”. Available to read in the Vancouver Courier and on joledingham.ca!
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Rabbit + Hat = Magic
A rabbit and a hat are generally synonymous with magic and that is exactly what we wish you for the Holiday Season. Take advantage of time away from your daily routine and enjoy precious moments and happiness with your loved ones. We will be back in January with a White Rabbit and a Red Rabbit (Lapin blanc, lapin rouge, our upcoming play) who promise to make the magic last through the beginning of 2016. Happy Holidays!
Théâtre la Seizième
PS: Our rabbits fit just perfectly into a Christmas stocking….
The Holidays are synonymous with food, Christmas trees, champagne and headaches. Headaches, because inevitably, we struggle to figure out what to get our favourite aunt, our son’s dedicated teacher or our helpful neighbour. Well, headache solved. Here are five excellent reasons to give the gift of theatre this season.
|1. THINK GREEN
Christmas is often a time for over-consumption. Even with the best of intentions, we buy a whole bunch of things that are more or less useful, and that end up being stuffed on shelves or thrown in the garbage. To ease your environmental conscience, why not consider theatre tickets?
At Théâtre la Seizième, there is something for everyone. This season, the traveller among your friends will love Lapin blanc, lapin rouge, all grown up children will be amazed by Robert Lepage’s 887, your big-hearted friend will be swept away by Tu te souviendras de moi and the food lover will salivate for the diner-theatre package. Gift exchange? Go for a gift certificate.
|3. FOR YOUR HEALTH!
People who consume culture in general, and theatre specifically, are more likely to be happy and in good health. For that person you love, what more could you wish for?
|4. SCIENTIFICALLY TESTED
It has been proven that your gift is almost guaranteed to be liked by those close to you. Over the course of Seizième’s last three seasons, 95% of the audience has said they liked or loved the shows they saw. Not a bad batting average, huh?
|5. GUILTY PLEASURE
Let’s be honest. There is a very good chance that the person you give tickets to will invite you to come along with them. So really, it’s also a gift for you too, because you get to enjoy a memorable evening out with someone you care about.
Our gift certificates were re-designed by Persona, the company behind our corporate image. They are gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous, and you don’t need wrapping paper!
Call us at 604.736.2616 to purchase your gift certificates, or visit our online box office for tickets.
Several exciting announcements from our community:
|Siona Gareau-Brennan (À toi, pour toujours, ta Marie-Lou and Selfie) played a Quebecoise nurse returning from Afghanistan suffering post-traumatic stress disorder in The Fighting Season. This new play by Sean Oliver Harris was awarded the Critics’ Choice Award by the Georgia Straight and The Cultchivating The Fringe Award.|
|The actor/playwright, Gilles Poulin-Denis, has returned from two months of touring in Montreal, France and Belgium where he co-created Après la peur. Bringing together authors from around the Francophone world, this production is an immersive look at city life through philosophical, interactive and playful road-trips.|
|Vincent Leblanc-Beaudoin, who we will once again see at Théâtre la Seizième in Mathieu Mathématiques this spring, acted in not one, but two plays at the Fringe Festival in Vancouver. He was part of the cast of I Can’t Tell You, an off the wall play based on lying, and Kitimat by Elaine Avila on the pros and cons of oil pipelines.|
|Emilie Leclerc will play the role of Béatrice in John and Beatrice by Carole Fréchette this fall. Presented from November 25-28 in English and from December 2-5 in French, this production by Vortex Théâtre will be directed by Marie Farsi.|
|September 16, Théâtre la Seizième co-presented a workshop of Straight Jacket Winter at Zones théâtrale in Ottawa. This new play by the company Deux par quatre, developed by Gilles Poulin-Denis and Esther Duquette as part of the Dramaturgical Development Program, garnered the interest of many festival goers.|
|The actor Joey Lespérance (À toi pour toujours, ta Marie-Lou) and the director Rachel Peake (Selfie) will travel to Regina to create The Snow Queen. This adaptation of the fairy tales by Christian Andersen will be presented from November 12 to December 27 at the Globe Theatre.|
|The director Anita Rochon (Extra-Céleste) directs a unique adaptation of Romeo + Juliet at Studio 58 from October 1 to the 18, 2015. The story takes place in Andy Warhol’s studio in 1965, and surprise, surprise, Romeo is… a woman.|
|Julie Trépanier (À toi pour toujours, ta Marie-Lou, Selfie, Deux ans de votre vie) is working with Neworld Theatre to present a Workshop around the action/intention paradox facilitated by Jason Byrne from Dublin. This training opportunity for professional actors and directors will take place at Presentation House from October 28th to November 1st .|
|Two Vancouverites, Esther Duquette and Marie Farsi, won grants from the Fondation pour l’Avancement du théâtre francophone au Canada at the annual gala held in Ottawa on September 18. Esther’s grant will allow her to finalize the development of Straight Jacket Winter, while Marie will be using her grant to travel to Bali and study shadow puppetry.|
A few nice projects by our talented artists are cooking under the sun, during the most beautiful season of the year!
|An ambulatory play conceived for one audience member at a time, The Stranger is an opportunity to see the actor Vincent Leblanc Beaudoin (Selfie, 2015) at work in an original context. DLT Teatro will present this new creation by Daniele Bartolini as part of the rEvolver Festival from May 26 to 31.|
|From June 17 to 20, the writer and actor Gilles Poulin-Denis (Statu Quo, Des fraises en janvier) will be at the Scotiabank Dance Centre in The Value of Things. Voted “Best dance show” by Le Voir Montreal, this show about money and happiness produced by Montreal’s Grand Poney Company will be presented in Vancouver by plastic orchid factory.|
|Cory Haas (Statu Quo), will be on stage May 23 and 24 performing in Balls, a play about risk that he is co-producing with his company Stages Theatre and Co, in collaboration with Deux par quatre, as part of the rEvolver Festival. He will then put on the costume for the character Richard Hanney in The 39 Steps, a play by Peninsula Productions.|
|Dave Deveau’s words (Extra-Céleste) continue to travel throughout Canada. After touring Celestial Being (the English version of Extra-Céleste) for several weeks in Ontario, Tagged, his play for teenagers, hits the road again this summer with Green Thumb Theatre.|
Here are some inspiring projects from our artists to start off 2015 in style. Enjoy your outings!
|You have until January 17 to catch Kayak at the Firehall Centre! The director Rachel Peake (Le portrait Gooble, Selfie, Théâtre la Seizième) stages this funny, personal and biting play about the environmental crisis.|
|Sylvie Drapeau struck a cord with you in La liste in 2012? Now it’s the actress France Perras’ turn (À toi, pour toujours ta Marie-Lou, Théâtre la Seizième) to perform this script in its English translation. A production by Ruby Slippers Theatre and BoucheWHACKED! Theatre Collective, at Studio 16 from January 27 to February 1.|
|Anita Rochon (Extra-Céleste, Théâtre la Seizième) and her company the Chop Theatre, present Sonice Elder at Club PuSh January 29. At the crossroads between theatre, testimonial and music, this piece brings together six musical legends on stage, who will share with you their greatest hits and deepest heartbreaks .|
|After À toi, pour toujours, ta Marie-Lou, Cory Haas is once again working as an assistant director. This time he is behind the scenes in One Man, Two Guvnors at the Arts Club. This musical with a “British” accent, is presented from January 22 to February 22, 2015, on stage at the Stanley Theatre.|
|In March, the actors Emilie Leclerc and Gilles Poulin-Denis will tour France with the iShow. Created by a collective of young Canadian artists, amongst them Emilie and Gillles, the show explores human relationships through social media. The tour includes stops in 11 cities of the Hexagone.|
I just saw my first Michel Tremblay: À toi, pour toujours, ta Marie Lou. Now I know why his work is so highly regarded.
Actually, I’m almost shocked. Writing about the working class has never been a way to attain fame and fortune, but surprisingly he has received overwhelming critical acclaim for doing just that, and with a clear bias toward women. Hmm, openly homosexual in the 60s, writing in Joual (dialect of French in Quebec), strong women, working class politics, and condemning of the Church. How did he even survive?!
Take a trip to Theatre Seizieme and find out first hand. Written in 1970, À toi, pour toujours, ta Marie Lou is not only rare for its time, it’s radical for any time. Orchestral in its flow, full of swearing, and unremittingly harsh in its portrayal of the reality of this family, it’s both timeless and perfect for Quebec in 1970, all at once.
When you see this (there’s English surtitles on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays as well as meet the artists on Fridays), give yourself time to absorb the set…it not only sets the stage, it’s an award winner guaranteed. Outrageously stunning.
But the players make this script come alive. Joey Lesperance plays Leopold, the abusive husband and father and wow, does he ever. But before you let yourself ease into the simplicity of writing Leopold off, Tremblay subtlety lets the 3 other actors, all women, expose themselves in a way that will make you wonder.
Foremost for me was the character of Manon ( Siona Gareau Brennan). She hates her father but was given the gift of his physical genes and worse, learned his behaviour unwittingly. I’m not sure I’ve seen this portrayed before and it reflects the reality of the dysfunction that engulfs us all.
Marie Lou ( France Perras) shines as the mother, ceaselessly knitting and spewing her own brand of abuse. Just as I did, Manon idolizes her mother as the martyr that saves her, but the reality is far different. Her sister, Carmen ( Julie Trépanier), tries to help her see through this fog throughout, but has taken a path so radically different than the acceptable religious one, she is rebuffed at every opportunity.
I hope Theatre Seizieme follows up with Sainte Carmen de la Main, which follows Carmen later in life and poses a very different question.
In the meantime, there are only 20-30 tickets left in the entire run of À toi, pour toujours, ta Marie Lou, which ends next Saturday, October 25th. I understand another show may be added, so stay tuned to their website to get in on that action. You may see your family on the stage, but you won’t be disappointed!
And if you still haven’t had enough film, the Amnesty International Film Festival starts tonight (Friday) and runs all day Saturday in the Alice MacKay Room, in the lower level of the Central Library in Downtown Vancouver. And it costs the same as everything did before civilization overran the planet: absolutely nothing. Enjoy!
Dave Olsen, Reellife
1) One hat for each version of the story;
2) Hailing from a Fairtrade winery, il represents the future of the wine industry;
3) Be careful – the attack is formidable but the finish may get caught in your throat!;
4) It’s a unique product from a faraway land.
Only 200 bottles remain in the greater Vancouver area, so if you want to try an extraordinary product off the beaten path, you have to hurry.Enjoy the wine. Enjoy the performance.
We are back again in 2014 with our recommendations for cultural outings. To stay abreast of what is happening on the arts scene in town and outside of it, we read plenty of scripts, scour festival brochures, and, mostly, we see lots and lots of performances. Every couple of weeks, we will share our favourite ones with you.
|January is for arts lovers as it brings back the PuSh Festival and its internationally acclaimed productions. Other than The Dragonfly of Chicoutimi, the breathtaking production we are co-presenting with PuSh and SFU Woodward’s, we would like to suggest two other productions in the festival from Quebec for your viewing pleasure.
USUALLY BEAUTY FAILS
To go along The Dragonfly of Chicoutimi by award-winning author Larry Tremblay, Michael Gauthier, wine enthusiast and restaurant owner, recommend the Domaine Pinnacle Ice Cider ($29.99), a product crowned by many gold medals .
2) It’s opulent, intense and complex;
3) It is exceptionally balanced ;
4) It’s what happens when a variety of quality elements come together;
This product offers great value and is available throughout the Vancouver area. Enjoy the wine. Enjoy the performance.