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Hello Theatre Lovers

Well, it’s week 8 of “Working From Home….The Never-Ending Story” and I decided to don this brilliant wig in pure rejection of the state of my own hair these days! It is my intention with this newsletter to not scare you with the state of my hair, but rather to give you some fun suggestions for how you can while away the hours at home, feed your soul with art injections, and to keep you up-to-date with TC news.
This coming Tuesday would have been the start of our 2020 Summer Theatre Festival, with the opening of Mark Crawford’s play, The NEW Canadian Curling Club. I’m so disappointed that we have had to postpone this brilliant production and I want to thank all of our ticket & subscription purchasers for hanging in there with us! Due to the Covid-19 pandemic we are not able to gather at this time. Your ticket purchases for shows have been put on your TC account as a credit and may be used for any future plays. If you prefer to turn that into a tax-receiptable donation please call the office at 705-445-2200 and Anne will take care of that for you. As you know, Theatre Collingwood is a not-for-profit theatre company with charitable status. If you have any questions or concerns please do not hesitate to reach out to us at any time.
Theatres and artists around the country, and the world, are really suffering right now. At Theatre Collingwood we have no income coming in but still have to pay our expenses. Thanks to government assistance we are keeping the ship afloat, but just barely. I know that when this pandemic is over we will all enjoy seeing great shows again together. I ask you at this time to bear with us and I thank you for your patience. If you have the means and would like to make a donation please do so HERE or call the office. Every amount counts.
We thought, as Collingwood’s 36 year old theatre company, that it was time we had our own home. A permanent home in a Centre for the Arts. We did not think we would have to deal with a year when we could not gather people together, but rather would be speaking of a pandemic. The arts will survive, it always has. The artists will come back and the audiences will arrive, our volunteers will hand out programs and the shows will go on! For now we practice patience . I believe that not only will Theatre Collingwood survive, we will one day also have a permanent home. If you have the means to help make that happen please let us know. The future is bright and together we will make this happen in Collingwood.
I am currently working on an 8 week plan for the company, and I am also working on our 2021 programming. We will make every effort to keep you informed. Please recommend to your friends that they sign up for our newsletter so that they can stay informed too. I hope that we will be able to present something for you this year but only time will tell. Our greatest concern is for the health and safety of our patrons, staff, volunteers, performers and the whole community.
I came from a wonderful family. I can say that. Sure we had our ups and downs as all families do and one day I am going to write my memoir and tell you all about it! My parents and one sister have sadly gone, but I have two brothers and a sister who I absolutely adore. Our parents gave us all a great love for humanity, the wee creatures of the earth, and the arts. During this time of isolation my brother, John, has been sending all of us siblings a song each morning to brighten our day or stir a memory. It’s been a lot of fun and even produced a contest one week (for which I won a future lunch with my brother for guessing the theme for the week which was performers from Woodstock !) If you have had any sort of fun virtual event with friends I would love to hear about it. Please click HERE and let me know. Each morning when I listen to the song choice from my brother I inevitably end up finding other interesting musical choices as I wander through YouTube. I am a huge James Taylor fan and this week I offer to you a great James Taylor presentation on Oprah’s Master Class. Please enjoy!

Andrew Lloyd Webber's The Shows Must Go On continues on YouTube this week with By Jeeves.

This FREE stream begins Friday, May 8 at 2pm and will be available to watch on The Shows Must Go On - YouTube channel for 48 hours. By Jeeves features music by Andrew Lloyd Webber, and lyrics and book by Alan Ayckbourn. It is based on the series of novels and short stories by P. G. Wodehouse that centre on the character of Bertie Wooster and his loyal valet, Jeeves. The show premiered on April 22, 1975 at Her Majesty's Theatre in London, and ran for only a month. After rewrites, the show was produced in 1996 in both London and America, and premiered on Broadway in 2001. What do you think? Let me know. I love to hear your comments ! If you missed last week’s performance of Andrew Lloyd Webber: The Royal Albert Hall Celebration check out this clip in which Elaine Page stunningly sings Don’t Cry For Me Argentina from the musical EVITA.

I am always taken aback when I am approached by someone who says to me (and it does happen from time to time) that they are “just not into the arts”. I can’t help but find the need to ask them if they listen to any music, or dine in any restaurants, or enjoy the space they live or work in? All of these are art forms. I believe it would be fair to say that many are enjoying a lot of programming on Netflix right now. Shows that are packed with artists who are actors, singers, cinematographers, costume designers, make-up artists, set designers, etc. Most of who began their careers in regional theatre companies. That favourite pop music video….yup it is filled with not just singers but a whole tapestry of artists!

I had the pleasure of visiting France and The Louvre in 2000 with my daughter when she was performing in Germany that summer. I loved everything about it, and although many told me I would be disappointed with the Mona Lisa (“it’s so small!”) I instantly fell in love with her! I love architecture and history, and so I was fascinated when I found a short little video on YouTube called The Louvre: 800 years of history. Check it out.

If you are like me and a junky for art and The Louvre, why not take a tour with Andrew Hussey in his 6 part series called Treasures of the Louvre. You have to skip the ads that pop up but it is well worth seeing.

Last week I spoke about the actor/writer Alison Wearing and her memoir writing tutorials. Alison performed for us a few years back in her play Confessions of a Fairy’s Daughter. She has written a new book called Moments of Glad Grace about her journey to Ireland that she took with her father. It was to be launched just as we were told we must all social distance. Through the support of the National Arts Centre Alison was able to do a 1 hour virtual reading from her book (performed in an empty pub in Stratford, Ontario). It is delightful and I really think you will enjoy it. It is my hope to have Alison come perform again for us one day. I recommend you sit back, close your eyes, and enjoy this beautiful journey.

Don’t forget that The Stratford Festival is offering many great videos for your pleasure. Check them out at:

And now for something a little closer….

The MacLaren Art Centre is a beautiful art gallery located in Barrie, Ontario. Check out their virtual tour of the exhibit PORTRAITS, curated by Emily McKibbon and Noor Alé.

"The art of portraiture is a subtle one, evolving over time from stately portraits of power to contemporary works that challenge notions of beauty and identity. This exhibition features works from the MacLaren’s Permanent Collection that demonstrate how artists working across diverse media approach this venerable genre".
Thank you everyone, that’s the Buzz for now. To all the mothers out there HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY! Have a wonderful week and we will chat again soon.


Erica Angus
Executive Director, Theatre Collingwood
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