Wednesday, February 29, 2012

march 13-31 | fiddler on the roof

Our friends at TWU have another production coming up, this time it's the classic musical FIDDLER ON THE ROOF in honour of their 50th anniversary (there's got to be a joke about "tradition" in there somewhere...) It's featuring some faces familiar to our PT stage including Brandon Bates (THE GREAT DIVORCE), Julie Casselman (THE GREAT DIVORCE), and Ben Buckingham (GODSPELL). It also features choreography by yours truly!  Press release below.

Tickets are going fast for Trinity Western University’s production of Fiddler on the Roof, playing March 13 – 31 at TWU’s School of the Arts, Media and Culture. This festive co-production by the Music and Theatre Departments will ring in the university’s 50th year with a cast of 22 performers, accompanied by SAMC’s popular Klezmer Ensemble.

The timeless story takes place in pre-revolutionary Russia, where a small community of Jewish villagers cope with their uncertain future by clinging to the ideals of their past. “How do we keep our balance? Tradition!” sings Tevye, who expects his beautiful daughters to marry whomever the matchmaker chooses for them. But Tevye’s daughters belong to a new world. They’d rather marry for love than consult a matchmaker…or a father. In this story of faith and family, Tevye discovers which traditions are most precious; and which ones might just be changing for the better.

“What’s important in the end is not so much tradition itself but the truths behind it,” says Mountain Secondary grad Vincent Clements, “like living a life devoted to God and loving your family and neighbours.” Donning his best Klezmer attire, Vincent is proud to be the foundation of the Fiddler on the Roof band’s sound, playing acoustic bass guitar and contra-alto clarinet (the “big brother of the clarinet family,” as he likes to say).

“I think people would be surprised by what a 7-piece band can do,” says Vincent. “Many of us can play several different instruments, so the variety is sure to keep the audience on their toes. We’ll also be mingling with the cast onstage for portions of the show. I’m looking forward to those cool interactions with characters.”

TWU students first performed the show for the school’s 25th anniversary in 1987. The musical returns this spring for the 50th, kicking off 35 days of arts events at the 3rd annual Festival of the Arts, Media and Culture. The show is directed by Aaron Caleb with musical direction by Allan Thorpe, vocal coaching by Caroline Harder, and choreography by Andrea Loewen.

Playing March 13 – 31 at 7:30pm on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday with Saturday matinees only. Special pricing on the first Tuesday. For tickets and information, visit or email Explore the Festival of the Arts, Media and Culture at

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

feb 22-march 4 | the ugly one | richard wolfe

Frequent PT director Richard Wolfe (THE MEAL) had a project up at the Jericho Arts Centre, running until this Saturday night.

Lette thought he was normal. When his utter ugliness is revealed he turns to a plastic surgeon for help. But when the bandages come off… is there such a thing as too beautiful?

“This is a delightfully weirdly ominous show of quirky wit and stylish production… a great cast… this unique play… hugely funny… Bravo to director Richard Wolfe” – OutTV

Evening Performances: Wed. to Sat., 8pm
Matinees: Sat. and Sun. 2pm
Ticket Prices: By Donation at the Door | Reservations $20

For Reservations & Info call:
(604) 224-8007 Ext 3 or puchase Online Click Here

march 16 | passionate embrace: faith, art, tango

An exciting project exploring faith and art through the medium of the tango. Below is Regent student Sandra Vander Schaaf's open invitation to witness the public presentation of the final project for her Master's degree.

An Integrative Project in Art and Theology
Readings and Photography by Sandra Vander Schaaf
Argentine Tango Demonstration by Special Guests
Refreshments to follow
As you may know, I've been working on a writing project for the last couple of years, about my experience in the world of Argentine Tango and the ways this experience has intersected with my faith and spirituality. Tango has given me so much since my first tentative steps on the dance floor! This writing project is an attempt to convey my gratitude to the dance, the music, and the people that have enriched my life so deeply.

When the opportunity arose to write this book within the context of a Masters degree, I decided to "feed two birds with one hand" and apply to Regent College and their Integrative Project in Arts and Theology (IPIAT) program. This turned the project into more than just a book since the degree requirements include not only a "significant work of art" (which is my book), but an academic paper on the theological significance of the work, and a public presentation of the work ( which is the artsy equivalent of a thesis defence). The public presentation is set for March 16th and you are invited!

The presentation will begin at 7:30pm, but you are encouraged to come early. A number of local tangueros will be dancing in the chapel starting shortly after 7pm, to give you a taste of tango's music, dance, and the social etiquette of a milonga. You may also want to take time to look through a small exhibit of my tango photography before the official program begins.

The program will consist of readings from work, two short tango demonstrations, and a question and answer period that will begin with questions from my examiners and continue with questions from the audience. There will be refreshments served in the Atrium afterward, catered by the Just Work Economic Initiative (

The event is free of charge and all are welcome.

doubt | meet leslie lewis sword

Any of you who made it out for our Fringe Festival series in 2009 probably saw Leslie Lewis Sword in her one-woman show MIRACLE IN RWANDA.  Now she's back as Mrs. Muller in DOUBT and we couldn't be happier!

Fun facts about Leslie:
  • She splits her time between Vancouver and Naples, Florida.
  • Not just a pretty face, she's a Harvard graduate!
  • After Harvard she got her MFA in acting from UCLA.
  • Not just a Harvard graduate, Leslie is also a competitive bikini model. She's competed on many levels, won a handful of titles, and was featured in Fitness Print!

In order to introduce her to you, we asked her to draw a self-portrait. Here's what she sent in:

Interpret away!

Monday, February 27, 2012

doubt | poster of the week

The Vancouver Courier named the poster image for DOUBT as their poster of the week! The accompanying interview with Emily Cooper is posted below, or can be seen in its original context here.

A longtime photographer, Emily Cooper discovered the joys of turning men into women, squishing people’s faces and awkwardly elongating limbs through photo illustration. In only her first year creating artwork for Pacific Theatre, Cooper’s creations are some of the more distinct and evocative posters dotting the city. The surreal collages often combine text, cutout figures and animal heads. “Using animals was a fun way to add another layer to each character's personality,” Cooper says. “Scrooge as a squabbling, ugly turkey. The dying, wise Morrie as a wrinkly elephant. Danny, the aggressive muscle head as a pit bull. Animals have their own stereotypes and I used them to tell more of the story.”

For the upcoming production of John Patrick Shanely’s Doubt, Cooper decided to use an owl and a vulture to depict the warring characters of Father Flynn and Sister Aloysius, while a red-tailed hawk represents Sister James. “They are both fierce animals and I felt they were well matched,” Cooper says. “The scratchy, black and white style of the drawings also reinforce their battling relationship and drain it of colour. Sister James, however, has youthful hints of red, and is fleeing the page to avoid the conflict.”

Cooper has a library of scanned and photographed images, which she uses for her posters, taking bits and pieces of images to create an illustration. “In one poster there could be anywhere from five to 50 layers depending on how complicated the idea is. I like taking different mediums and mashing them together to see what comes out. They are all cut out and pasted together within Photoshop to have maximum control over each element.”

While she says she had a “hoot” putting the nun and the owl together and making the priest “charmingly awkward,” Cooper confesses she’s never been too fond of having her own feathery friends.

“I haven't [had a pet bird], but my friends did and that was enough for me. The flying, flapping, pooping, and squawking wasn't too alluring. I had fish instead.”

march 6-11 | goodness

Coming up at The Firehall Arts Centre...

The story of a Jewish-Canadian writer, the descendant of Holocaust survivors, who after a heatbreak, goes on a journey to uncover his past. By chance, he meets a woman who has lived through a much more recent genocide. Together they explore individual responsibility, prejudice and revenge as the stage fills with music from around the world from Ukraine to Croatia to Zimbabwe.

Winner of the 2006 Edinburgh Fringe First Award, Toronto’s Volcano Theatre has been touring this stunning and passionate production for 7 years to great acclaim.

March 6 to 11, 2012
Talkback March 8
8pm Tuesday through Saturday
2pm Sunday matinee
1pm Wednesday matinee
At The Firehall Arts Centre
Tickets: 604.689.0926

A Firehall Arts Centre, Chutzpah! Festival and Touchstone Theatre Co-Presentation
Produced by Volcano Theatre
Written by Michael Redhill
Directed by Ross Manson
Sets and Costumes by Teresa Przybylski
Musical Direction by Brenna MacCrimmon
Sound by John Gzwoski
Lighting Design by Rebecca Picherack

Performed by Paul Braunstein, Layne Coleman, Lili Francks, Tara Hughes, Jack Nicholsen and Amy Rutherford

Saturday, February 25, 2012

doubt | stage crew volunteers needed

For DOUBT, we need (volunteer) stage crew to shift props and adjust the set during transitions between scenes. Nothing technical. Especially for this coming week, when we have 8pm runs or performances Monday through Saturday, plus a 2pm matinee Saturday. You wouldn't be needed every night, but if you have some availability, call PT as soon as possible so we can fill you in on details and work you into the rotation. Thanks!

To reach us, try...

box office: 604-731-5518
admin office:  604-731-5483
email:  info at pacifictheatre dot org
me:  surfer at ronreed dot org
or facebook us!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

feb 23 - mar 10 | house of blue leaves | rick colhoun

PT Super-Fan and Ubiquitious Drummer Of Christmas Presence, Rick Colhoun shifts to the director's chair, seizing the once-in-a-lifetime chance to direct his favourite play. Once DOUBT has opened, a week from tomorrow, I'll be heading for Deep Cove to check out my buddy's directorial debut!

click to enlarge

doubt | photos

Here's the results of our initial photoshoot for DOUBT!  All photos by Emily Cooper.

DOUBT by John Patrick Shanley
March 2-31

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

march 9-24 | the importance of being earnest | gallery 7

Our friends at Gallery 7 Theatre are putting on Oscar Wilde's classic, THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST. Info below.

A hilarious and biting satire of Victorian morals and manners, Wilde's most famous comedy is a masterfully written romp featuring an absurd case of mistaken identity, and explores matters of love, marriage, and social status. Algernon and Jack are middle-class socialites, bored with their existence, and seek adventure by assuming different identities. Their charades can only go so far, however, and things really come to a head when they each decide to settle down and get married.

March 9 & 10, 15 - 17, 22 - 24, 2012 @ 7:30 PM
Discount Matinees: March 10 & 17

MEI Theatre
4081 Clearbrook Road, Abbotsford

Tickets On Sale Now @ House of James:
2743 Emerson Street, Abbotsford
604-852-37014 | 1-800-665-8828

Talk Back Thursdays*: March 15 & 22

Featuring: John Dawson | Joshua Friesen | Kirstie Hilverda | Carol Heynen | Sarah Hu | Ruth Kult | Trevor Kozak | Michael McIntyre | Nathan Unger | Matt Veenbaas

Directed by Ken Hildebrandt | Set Design by Brian Ball | Costume Design by Dani Rebain |
Lighting Design by Bryan Cutler | Sound Design by Rick Havinga | Stage Manager Charlene Crawford

doubt | meet the director

It seems a little silly to say "meet the director" on this one, since the director of DOUBT is the man who's behind every second post on this blog, as well as, you know, the entire theatre company. Since he's already done loads of interviews about why he started PT and his artistic work, here's a little video with him chatting about what he likes to do when he's not working on PT business.

Friday, February 17, 2012

feb 17 | sudden death improv | alison chisholm

PT administrator extraordinaire Alison Chisholm is a resident performer with Second Storey Theatre in Port Coquitlam, and is performing tonight in their ongoing series SUDDEN DEATH IMPROV. This show is appropriate for the whole family, so bring the whole family out to the 'burbs and check out some improv.

What inspires you? Sudden Death Improv is a dynamic show that uses timed elements of improv games to inspire scenes. With a cast of super talented performers, our goal is to bring top-quality, family-friendly improv to the Tri Cities. No longer do you have to travel far to have an awesome night of entertainment. Come see the freshest face in improv, which promises to be a great time full of laughs. Running every Friday and Saturday this show will blow you away.

Every Friday & Saturday night at 8pm
$10 adults / $8 children, students, or seniors
Second Storey Theatre #201-2550 Shaughnessy Street, Port Coquitlam

Thursday, February 16, 2012

doubt | the movie

The story of DOUBT, A PARABLE is probably best known from the 2008 film adaptation, directed by Shanley himself.  Nominations abounded for the acting and writing, which is no surprise considering the cast made up of the likes of Meryl Streep, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Amy Adams, and Viola Davis.  Here's an idea for a theatre club meeting: watch the play, then get together another night to screen the movie.  Compare and contrast!

DOUBT by John Patrick Shanley
March 2-31

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

mar 2-31 | doubt

doubt | headphones

Who would have thought it would be this hard to find a pair of headphones?  We're looking for a pair of classic transistor radio headphones, circa 1964, for our production of DOUBT.

Please email Frank at if you've got a pair that you could share!

feb 23-march 17 | king lear

Chock full of PT artists: Anthony F. Ingram (PLAYLAND), Katherine Gauthier (100 SAINTS YOU SHOULD KNOW), Evan Frayne (THE GREAT DIVORCE), Joel Stephanson (GODSPELL), and Sebastien Kroon (THE BUSY WORLD IS HUSHED), with the music of Benjamin Elliott (CHRISTMAS ON THE AIR)!

"Time shall unfold what plaited cunning hides."

In this unique and intimate take on one of Shakespeare's greatest plays, THE HONEST FISHMONGERS EQUITY CO-OP'S production of KING LEAR will bring you on a journey to the brink of madness and back- adding a modern edge to this classic play, audiences will find something new at every turn.

Starring Simon Webb as King Lear, along with Anthony F. Ingram, David Bloom, RenĂ©e Bucciarelli, Emma Slipp, Katherine Gauthier, Evan Frayne, Julie McIsaac, Joel Stephanson, Adele Noronha, Chris Cochrane, Sebastian Kroon, and Ashley O'Connell.

King Lear
Feb 23-March 17
The Havana Theatre
**warning for an instance of brutal violence and brief male nudity**

Monday, February 13, 2012

aug 15-17 | theatrical theology | st andrews, scotland

Betty Spackman sent me this. Who woulda thought: a Hans Urs von Balthasar Festival! The post is from Transpositions, a blog created by students associated with the Institute for Theology, Imagination, and the Arts at the University of St Andrews.

If you think that Christianity is a cosmic drama and not merely a collection of private beliefs, that good theology should lead to faithful participation in this drama, and that God himself gets involved in the beautiful mess of this play, then there is a perfect conference for you! On August 15-17 in beautiful St Andrews, Scotland, the Institute for Theology, Imagination, and the Arts is hosting a conference on Theatrical Theology: Conversations on Performing the Faith.

Influenced and inspired by Hans Urs von Balthasar’s seminal work in The Theo-Drama, a growing number of contemporary scholars in various theological disciplines are discovering the potential for interdisciplinary conversation between theology and theatre. From a theological perspective, there are several reasons why drama and theatre present themselves as particularly fitting conversation partners, including the inherently dramatic form of God’s revelation in word and deed, the role of Scripture as a text which invites performance rather than passivity, faithful action as both the goal and means of theological understanding, the public and communal nature of theology, and the indeterminacy, provisionality, and ‘improvised’ nature of the theological task. For its part, theatre has always been compelled to acknowledge a debt to its ancient and longstanding entanglements with religious and theological perspectives, and may have much to gain from the process of revisiting and responding to these, not least in their present-day Christian form.

The task of pursuing a serious and constructive interdisciplinary exchange between theatre and theology, however, is one that has only just begun. Furthermore, suspicions persist in some theological quarters regarding the value of interdisciplinary approaches to theology as such, and towards theatre in particular which, among the arts, has experienced a particularly volatile relationship with the Church across the centuries. In response to all of this, Theatrical Theology: Conversations on Performing the Faith will seek to demonstrate the fruitfulness for constructive Christian theology and theatre alike of pursuing the conversation further, tracing some of the advances that have already been made, and identifying new challenges and opportunities still to be reckoned with as the interaction continues and develops further.

Short papers proposals are invited on the conference theme, including the following topics:

Theatrical models and metaphors in Christian theology
Character formation for life and the stage
Ethics, improvisation, and performative wisdom
Christian practices and theatrical skills
Scripture as dramatic text
Liturgy, worship, and performance
Theodramatic ecclesiology and company life
Mission and audience participation
Stage, place and contextual theology
Embodiment and performing the faith
Proposals should be for 20-minute papers to be followed by 10 minutes for questions. Please include in the proposal your name, institution, paper title, and abstract (not exceeding 200 words). Paper proposals will be considered immediately, and please send submissions by email to before the deadline 15 June, 2012.

More information regarding conference proceedings and registration can be found at the ITIA website.

Thursday, February 09, 2012

side show | more from peter 'n chris

Another hilarious video with our friends Peter 'n Chris! With Toronto sketch comedy duo The Templeton Philharmonic, this is PETER 'N CHRIS COME TO DINNER.

featuring Peter 'n Chris
Feb. 10 & 11
Attend Friday's performance and get a FREE Vancouver Attractions Passport courtesy of Rosedale on Robson Suite Hotel.

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

side show | meet the team

SIDE SHOW is upon us!  This weekend, two nights only (don't forget that if you come on the Friday night you get a free Vancouver Attractions Passport courtesy of Rosedale on Robson Suite Hotel).  You've already met Peter 'n Chris, who will be joining our improv gang for the first time ever in an awesome double-bill.  Here's the rest of the crew in all their glory:

feb 10/11 | peter 'n chris at SIDESHOW!

PETER 'N CHRIS were the Pick of the 2011 Fringe, and you couldn't get tickets. Screamingly funny. They appeared in The Cultch's GIANTS series, and made this promo video to introduce themselves. We thought you might want to get to know them a little better before you see their hilarious show THE MYSTERY OF THE HUNGRY HEART MOTEL presented as a double feature with SIDE SHOW COMEDY IMPROV Feb. 10 & 11th!

feb 2-18 | tempting providence

I've been watching for this one since Angela Konrad first told me about it, years ago. "A fantastic piece of theatre that will no doubt be on my top 10 of all time for all time. Can't wait to see it again."  Talking to Gateway's Artistic Director Simon Johnston recently, he said "I can't believe Pacific Theatre hasn't done this one." So I'm thinking it's a Soul Food must-see.    

February 2-18
Richmond Gateway
tix online

The first British settlers to arrive in Newfoundland found the climate too harsh and headed south to Virginia. It took sterner stuff in the form of London-born nurse, Myra Bennett, to endure the region’s bleak weather and conquer its stubborn inhabitants. Nurse Bennett traveled by foot, horse, dogsled, and boat to deliver babies, set bones, and extract teeth on an isolated 320-kilometer stretch of roadless coast. Tempting Providence is an intriguingly-staged story of courage and strength based on the remarkable life of the outport nurse who became known as “the Florence Nightingale of the North.”

“It’s just one of the things that art gives us—an ability to see beyond the ordinary in our everyday lives and grasp the extraordinary at its heart.” —Toronto Sun

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

feb 8-26 | the marvelous wonderettes | lalainia lindbjerg

You saw Lalainia Lindbjerg and Diana Kaarina on our stage in CHRISTMAS ON THE AIR last year (who could forget Lalainia's rock-opera rendition of O Holy Night?), and now here they are, together again!

Experience Springfield High School’s 1958 Super Senior Prom where you will meet the Wonderettes, four girls with hopes and dreams as big as their crinoline skirts! Not only are they the trophy winning Varsity Songleaders, but Betty Jean, Suzy, Cindy Lou and Missy have all been nominated for Springfield‘s “Queen of your Dreams.” As the girls sing your favourite classics from the ‘50s including; “Mr Sandman,” “Lollipop,” and “Lipstick on your Collar”, learn about their lives and loves. Who will get your vote for the crown?

Feb 8-26 at the PAL Theatre
Tickets are available online at Tickets Tonight or by phone at (604) 684-2787. For group rates, call (604) 880-1564.

Regular: $25.50 + $3.75 s/c
Preview: $15.50 + $3.25 s/c
Valentine’s Day: Treats for your Sweets! Dessert Buffet and Show: February 14th
$35.50 + $4.25 s/c

happy 200th birthday charles!

Today would have been Charles Dickens' 200th birthday, had he been the type of fellow to live 200 years. With their time-zone advantage, England has already celebrated with the largest gathering of Dickens' descendants of all time. We can't compete on that level, but we can re-publish our Scrooge-as-Turkey image!

What animal would you have chosen to represent Scrooge, one of Dickens' most famous characters?