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STAGE NOTES: New theatre seasons launch across the metropolis

Thrillers and mysteries at Workshop West, well-known musicals within the Citadel’s season, a world-premiere vacation affair at The Roxy, and extra

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Workshop West Playwrights’ Theatre has simply launched the lineup for its forty fifth season, titled Borderlands: Encounters on the Outskirts.

“It’s about journeys and discoveries,” says inventive producer Heather Inglis.

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There are three reveals within the 2023/24 season, all to be seen at WWPT’s house, Gateway Theatre (8529 Gateway Blvd.) First up in October is a psychological thriller referred to as Mob by Quebecois playwright Catherine-Anne Toupin (translated from French by Chris Campbell). The present was a “red-hot ticket” throughout its solely manufacturing a number of years in the past at Centaur Theatre in Montreal. The brand new outing stars Kristin Johnston, Graham Mothersill and Davina Stewart.

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“It’s a couple of girl who loses her job and goes on a street journey to assuage her rage and humiliation, and arrives at a distant B&B the place nobody is who they appear,” says Inglis, who directs the manufacturing.

Playwright David Gagnon Walker has created the subsequent providing, a whimsical fable debuting in January 2024 titled This Is the Story of the Little one Groomed by Concern. Seen at Edmonton’s Discovered Pageant in 2021, the play (directed by Christian Berry) leans into Inglis’ affection for tales with uncommon settings and buildings that additionally contain the viewers.

“Among the viewers are given scripts and lamps and tables and because the play unfolds, viewers members who’re prepared are invited to inform the story with David Gagnon,” says Inglis. “It’s actually fairly a particular piece that celebrates how the act of telling a narrative collectively in a shared area can convey us collectively.”

Inglis additionally directs the final present of the season in Could, a brand new work by award-winning Edmonton author Conni Massing. Starring Collin Doyle, Laura Brovold and Marilyn Ryan, Useless Letter is a component romantic comedy and half thriller.

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“It’s a gloriously mischievous, enjoyable play about how there may be hidden which means all over the place,” says Inglis.

Heather Inglis, artistic producer of Workshop West
Heather Inglis, inventive producer of Workshop West. Photograph by Ian Jackson /Provided

WWPT will launch one other iteration of the Shoe Mission throughout SkirtsAfire Pageant in March. The mission sees immigrant girls share their arrival tales by means of their footwear. Additionally in March, look ahead to Springboards New Play Pageant, every week of readings of performs in growth that gives the general public a sneak peek on the artistic course of.

For extra info, name 780-477-5955 or go to

Oscar Wilde’s refresh

The Citadel Theatre presents its first present of the 2023/24 season, The Significance of Being Earnest, on the Maclab stage from Sept. 23 to Oct. 15.

Director Jackie Maxwell has given the piece a refresh by transferring the setting from the Edwardian interval to the Nineteen Fifties. Tickets begin at $40 and can be found at or by calling the field workplace at 780-425-1820. 9828 101 A Ave. Watch right here for a evaluate following the play’s official opening night time on Sept. 28.

The Roxy’s dangerous enterprise

When Theatre Community’s Bradley Moss designs a brand new season for The Roxy, he needs to take dangers.

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“There are two issues I’m making an attempt to push the envelope on,” says Moss as he discusses the theatre’s 2023/24 season. “One is content material, to talk the issues that have to be spoken. And the opposite one is type.”

This season, its forty ninth, The Roxy highlights the inventive director’s twin priorities with a wide range of productions that (to cite Carol Shields) startle and illuminate.

The inimitable Karen Hines kicks off the three-show season in October with Pochsy IV. Written and carried out by the Calgary/Toronto artist, the present is a clown efficiency — minus the crimson nostril — that traces the journey of Pochsy, who has just lately misplaced her job at Mercury Packers. (And also you thought meat packing was a hazardous enterprise.)

“There’s a great blackness to it. It’s a dialogue about local weather and our surroundings. It’s bizarre and fantastical,” says Moss.

December sees the world premiere of a feel-good vacation manufacturing. With Bells On: The Musical is predicated on a play by Darrin Hagen a couple of seven-foot drag queen who’s dressed for a Christmas pageant once they get trapped in an elevator with a person weighed down by a streak of dangerous luck.

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With Bells On: The Musical
With Bells On: The Musical, primarily based on a play by Darrin Hagen, runs as a part of the 2023/24 season at The Roxy. Photograph by Vuk Vukovic /Provided

Tommy Newman and Devanand Janki have written the guide, with music and lyrics by Newman. There’s a four-piece dwell band. Directed by Janki — a New York choreographer and former Edmontonian — the present takes Hagen’s play to a brand new stage.

“The trick of a musical is that the songs reveal extra in regards to the story,” says Moss. “And that’s what they’ve achieved.”

The final present of the season arrives in April 2024 with the world premiere of Great Joe by the famend Ronnie Burkett. The puppet grasp’s newest creation stars Joe and his canine, Mister, who forge a brand new path after shedding their house.

“That is the benefit of the brand new venue. It’s the total manufacturing unit, with a store and a rehearsal corridor that’s good for Ronnie,” says Moss.

Additionally calling The Roxy house within the 2023/24 season is the Phoenix collection of performances by impartial firms and artists. It begins in September with a brief run of Cinderella introduced by Alberta Musical Theatre Firm. Excellent for households, Cinderella’s guide and lyrics are by Farren Timoteo with music by Stephanie Urquhart. The favored comedy trio Woman Mind has two Phoenix outings in October and December. The Brian Webb Dance Firm can also be a part of the collection in March of 2024.

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With an annual working finances of roughly $700,000, Theatre Community options different highlights, together with the second annual outing in February of the multidisciplinary extravaganza often called One other F!*#@$g Pageant. A brand new pageant referred to as KinFest, introduced by Ribbon Rouge, is tentatively scheduled for spring. And the pageant for rising expertise, Nextfest, makes its commonly scheduled look in June.

Right here’s some information. Moss might not supply The Roxy as a Fringe BYOV area in 2024. There are a selection of things at play, together with that artists dropped out final minute in 2023, leading to a scramble to fill the theatre area. Artists additionally have been involved in regards to the distance of The Roxy (10708 124 St.) from Outdated Strathcona.

“It’s important to rethink every thing you do, each time you do it,” says Moss. “We have now to rethink about (Fringe).”

For extra info on the 2023/24 season, go to

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