Wednesday, March 14, 2018

bar mitzvah boy | meet the cast

BAR MITZVAH BOY is a two-hander with a lot of comedy and a lot of heart, and Gina Chiarelli and Richard Newman are the perfect actors to bring it to life.

Gina Chiarelli is a long-time member of the Pacific Theatre family, having performed in THE FEVER, AGNES OF GOD, and THE BUSY WORLD IS HUSHED. It is so wonderful to have Gina back with us after several years of absence.

Richard Newman makes his Pacific Theatre debut in this role! The warmth, charm, and humour he brings to BAR MITZVAH BOY speaks volumes, and we are so happy to welcome him to the PT family.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

bar mitzvah boy | advance photos

Thank you to Emily Cooper for taking these fantastic advance photos for BAR MITZVAH BOY, featuring Richard Newman and Gina Chiarelli, on the in-progress set design by Carolyn Rapaons..

Monday, March 12, 2018

bar mitzvah boy | theatre that matters

Director Ian Farthing shares his perspective on how BAR MITZVAH BOY fits into our focus on creating theatre that matters.

Wednesday, March 07, 2018

bar mitzvah boy | from the playwright

When BAR MITZVAH BOY won the Jewish Playwriting Prize, playwright Mark Leiren-Young made a video about his inspiration for the story, coming from two wildly different places.

Tuesday, March 06, 2018

bar mitzvah boy | first read

Yesterday was the first read of BAR MITZVAH BOY, a brand-new script by Mark Leiren-Young about a successful Jewish lawyer who suddenly decides that he needs to have a bar mitzvah. We had such a good time hearing this script for the first time, and we can't wait to share it with you.

Monday, March 05, 2018

pacific theatre venue update | the state of things

Some time has passed since we last shared an update on our venue situation here at PT. We know that there are members of our community who are concerned about the future our physical home as well as its impact on the company as a whole. Let us eagerly assure you that Pacific Theatre, as a company, is not going anywhere. As we continue to explore options, we will do our best to keep you updated - below is a statement about where things are at right now and how we got here.

In 1994, Pacific Theatre found a home in the Chalmers Heritage Building at 12th and Hemlock after a decade of producing theatre in various locations in and around Vancouver. This distinctive and intimate alley stage has been a great home for our artists and audiences ever since, and now in our 33rd year of creating theatre that matters, we pursue a new home. We fully intend to maintain such a home for our productions and people, and improve upon our facilities even if it requires a temporary or permanent relocation.

In 2012, a strategic planning process noted the importance of acknowledging the venue needs for Pacific Theatre with a focus on being in a space that made us more accessible and provided opportunity for sustainable growth as a company and as artists. Not long after, we learned that our landlords at Holy Trinity Anglican Church had chosen to seek redevelopment to best manage the large Heritage Building. At that time we knew that a search for a new home needed to be expedited. This led to a year-to-year leasing arrangement with Holy Trinity, that is currently secure until June 30th 2019, with the possibility of further lease renewal until redevelopment plans are confirmed. Once construction commences, we have a number of options.

Remaining at 12th and Hemlock post-redevelopment is an encouraging possibility for Pacific Theatre. We are working closely with Holy Trinity on options that would provide increased street presence and capacity for us as part of the building redesign. We are also exploring other avenues, including a potential partnership with the Fringe Festival and Langara College to create an Arts Centre elsewhere in the city.

For the past five years, we are proud to say that Pacific Theatre has continued to produce full theatrical seasons while preparing for significant changes regarding our theatre space. We fully intend to continue in that tradition, and we are deeply grateful for the integrity and trust of our landlords at Holy Trinity Anglican Church, as well as their openness to keep us a potential part of their future plans. We appreciate the support of Cultural Services at the City of Vancouver as we execute studies on potential venue options, and all other partners who have been open and generous with their time. We also need to thank our patrons, artists, reviewers, and all those who hold Pacific Theatre as a valuable space for art in Vancouver. We will continue to serve the community as one of the only mid-sized theatre companies and look forward to reporting on venue changes when plans are confirmed.

Friday, March 02, 2018

mar 2 - 25 | forget about tomorrow | arts club

Pacific Theatre stalwart Craig Erickson (God’s Man In Texas, Grace, Leave Of Absence) plays Tom in FORGET ABOUT TOMORROW at the Arts Club.

When Jane’s husband Tom is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, they face a difficult journey ahead. Will love and humour be enough to brace their family for the future? Can Jane reconcile her dreams with today’s reality? Or will she grow to doubt her loyalty to the man who will ultimately forget her name? From one member of the award-winning Mom’s the Word Collective, this is a story of hope and change.

March 2 - 25, 2018
Matinees Saturday and Sunday
Goldcorp Stage at the BMO Theatre (162 W 1st Avenue)

Tickets and Info Here.

Thursday, March 01, 2018

an almost holy picture | show quotes

The script for AN ALMOST HOLY PICTURE is full of beautiful moments of poetry. We asked actor David Snider to share with us his favourite lines in the show, here are a few of them.

Monday, February 26, 2018

an almost holy picture | responses

David Snider is getting rave reviews for his performance in AN ALMOST HOLY PICTURE!

"David Snider delivers a humble, heartfelt performance as Samuel. He skillfully inhabits the play’s emotions and humour." | Colin Thomas

"Samuel’s (David Snider) soothing and even calm voice as he tells his rather tragic story draws the audience in, all swaying together with every rhythm and repetition, almost like poetry... Accompany Samuel Gentle as he copes with grief, guilt and misguided love with the most powerful ritual of them all; reflection." | Jessica Kim, UBC Players Club

"Under the direction of Ron Reed, there is a reverence to Snider’s performance which mirrors that of the script itself." | Mark Robins, Vancouver Presents

Friday, February 23, 2018

an almost holy picture | photos

Here are some photos from AN ALMOST HOLY PICTURE - bonus points to anyone who can think of a good joke about posting pictures for the show about a picture that's not-quite-holy!

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

two gargoyles | an almost holy picture | pacific theatre

I am sleepwalking again.
There is evidence of mischief everywhere.

Pictures fallen from the walls.
Shoes removed from closets and lined up on windowsills.
Nine tomatoes piled in the upper rack of the dishwasher.
A bloody left knee.

One morning
Washing up
I lean over the sink.
In the mirror
I see my face.
Somehow, in the night
I've shaved off my eyebrows.

The Bishop finds me
Outside the cathedral
High on a balcony
Perched, knees drawn up
Sitting between two gargoyles

The Bishop calls to me,
"Samuel. Samuel," he says,
"Would you like a blanket?"

At 49
I've returned to the practice of my youth.
I, Samuel Gentle,
By day, groundskeeper
For The Church of the Holy Comforter.
By night, somnambulist.


An Almost Holy Picture
by Heather McDonald
Feb 21 - Mar 3, Pacific Theatre

Sunday, February 18, 2018

'57 thunderbird | an almost holy picture | pacific theatre

While Ariel and Miriam sleep, I wander down to the gas station where Mr. Martinez and I sit in a gleaming white '57 Thunderbird he's been restoring, and we drink coffee and smoke.

There is another realm, that which is beyond, and we long to be at home in that realm. Occasionally, that realm breaks through. One of the places I have felt that realm has been in Mr. Martinez' '57 Thunderbird.

One winter I'd had to return to the Cape in January. There had been a terrible storm and I'd come to repair the roof on my summer house. Mr. Martinez had bought the gas station and moved to Truro with his seven year old son in late September, so we hadn't yet met. The first time I saw him, there was a light snow falling. He stood behind the station, eyes closed, and now and then he ran his hand over his smooth brown head that shone in the moonlight. He must've been standing there awhile because the snow had drifted up around his boots. He looked to be floating. I coughed and asked if I could borrow a hammer. He said he had three and that I could choose. Then he ran his hand over his smooth head again and said, "The most delightful advantage of being bald -- one can hear snowflakes."

An Almost Holy Picture
by Heather McDonald
Feb 21 - Mar 3, Pacific Theatre

Friday, February 16, 2018

ruined | closing early

NOTICE: The remaining performances of RUINED have been cancelled due to a medical situation that has arisen. For more information, please read the statement below by Executive Director Alison Chisholm:

It is with much regret that we have had to close the run of RUINED early. A medical situation came up within the cast, and while the cast member in question is not in any life threatening situation, it is important that they be offered the time and space to get well. For this reason, a decision between cast, crew, Dark Glass Theatre and Pacific Theatre to close RUINED early would be best for this delicate and intricate production.

I want to express my deepest gratitude to our cast and crew for their dedication and passion in presenting Lynn Nottage’s beautiful and challenging work. The time and talent invested in this production has been humbling and inspirational. I applaud Dark Glass Theatre for their courage in producing this production and allowing Vancouver audiences the opportunity to experience this script.

I also want to thank the patrons, donors, sponsors, volunteers, and general supporters of Pacific Theatre for your love and compassion as we have navigated changes to our performance schedule. Your commitment and grace is motivating and I cannot express my appreciation enough.

Anyone who had any tickets reserved to this closing weekend is being issued a full refund and offered complimentary tickets to any future production at Pacific Theatre. We at Pacific Theatre do our very best to come to all our decisions with great thoughtfulness, care, and compassion. We thank you all for your understanding and grace as we close this show with heavy and loving hearts.

- Alison Chisholm
Executive Director | Pacific Theatre

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

ruined | more show photos

Here's a final batch of photos from RUINED! This powerful story comes to and end on Feb 17th - hope you can make it out.

Thursday, February 08, 2018

ruined | show photos

More shots from RUINED, still playing until Feb. 17th. All photos by Jalen Laine Photography.


Tuesday, February 06, 2018

ruined | responses

A TOP PICK in Colin Thomas' newsletter: "Of the shows I’ve already seen, Ruined is the one to catch. It’s about the violence perpetrated against women in the ongoing Congolese conflict. That content is harrowing. But honesty and urgency turn the script into an elevating experience. Many of the cast members in this Dark Glass Theatre production contribute exquisite work."

"The women and their tales grab us first in our throats but ultimately in our hearts. Because as poet songstress Buffy Ste. Marie put it, "God is alive / Magic is afoot" whenever souls reach across the abyss to touch one another... this is almost must-viewing to put the subjugation, victimization and violence-against-women incidents of recent history in a particularly raw, non-Western way despite the script's American authorship. Quite astonishing its effect." | Baird Blackstone, Broken Leg Reviews

"This is without a shadow of a doubt the most important piece of theatre I have witnessed in recent years... You will leave this experience a little more enlightened, a little more educated, reeling from the talent and possibly wishing that you had been left in the dark." | Liz Gloucester, Two Cents and Two Pence

"From her first, halting entrance, Makambe K. Simamba ripped my heart out as Sophie. It doesn’t feel like she’s acting... Shayna Jones, who plays Salima, is every bit as credible. Salima has a long speech in which she relives her abduction and the loss of her baby, Beatrice. Without ever resorting to melodrama or sentimentality, Jones makes it real. It’s clear that the actors in this production by Dark Glass Theatre know that they’re working on something important, something that’s bigger than they are. Those are the only circumstances in which you get performances that are this deep and humble." | Colin Thomas

"I want to reiterate how good the acting is across the board, but particularly by Mutombo, Jones and Simamba as the three damaged women who represent all the innocent female victims Nottage is honouring here. Nice work, too, by onstage musicians Mikaela Fuqua and Jacky Yenga... Ruined is an important story well-told by this brave company and well worth seeing." | Jerry Wasserman, Vancouver Plays

"GO SEE IT!!! I thought it would be much harder to take but it was're lulled into the rhythms of the place...of people coming and going and then suddenly you jump out of your skin when some sensational thing happens… I am seriously contemplating a filled up my soul." | Joy Rudder, Audience Email

"This is a challenging play for the commanding role of Mama Nadi (played unforgettably by Mariam Barry)... The set design by Carolyn Rapanos is a simple rustic bar with cheap tables and aluminum siding. The space feels vulnerable, open and unprotected, which reflects the danger that is constantly threatening Mama Nadi and her girls. The live music performed at Mama’s establishment is lovely, honest and pure, sung shyly at first by new girl Sophie (played by a formidable Makambe K Simamba)." | Erin Jane, Review Vancouver

"Overall this production of Ruined was an extremely brave." | Jessica Kim, UBC Players Club

Monday, February 05, 2018

ruined | opening night reception

We had a fantastic opening this weekend for RUINED! Here are some shots from the opening night reception - including a glimpse back stage!