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April 14 , 2005

Alberta theatre takes Ottawa stages by storm

The best of Alberta theatre showcased in National Arts Centre’s Alberta Scene

OTTAWA (Ontario) – A trailer court drag show. A musical about the true story of one man’s fight against the oil and gas industry. A new Albertan take on a Chekhov classic.

These are some of the fabulous plays that will grace NAC and Ottawa stages during Alberta Scene—an arts and culture festival featuring 600 Alberta artists from April 28 to May 10.

The line-up includes some of Alberta’s most impressive theatre artists, such as Daniel Arnold and Medina Hahn, whose play, Tuesdays & Sundays, is so successfulit has been made into a radio play by both CBC and BBC and is being adapted into a chamber opera and a feature film (Slate Films, UK).  

Audiences will be treated to two productions by Chris Craddock, who is poised to become a giant force in Canadian theatre.  Craddock directed Tornado Magnet: A Salute to Trailer Court Women, a hilarious look at growing up white trash in an Alberta trailer court. He also adapted Miriam Toews’ debut novel, Summer of My Amazing Luck, for the stage and acts in the play.

Alberta Scene audiences will recognize the face of Lorne Cardinal, who stars in the hit TV series Corner Gas, in Time Stands Still, a moving and funny play by Terry Ivins about two Aboriginal men who are serving time in an Alberta prison for robbery.

“I am so pleased that audiences outside Alberta now have the chance to see just how dynamic and diverse the world of Alberta theatre really is,” said Alberta Scene producer Heather Moore. “The talent and breadth of work coming from that part of the country is truly astounding.”

The NAC is proud to be welcoming Alberta theatre artists to Ottawa and helping to give extended life to their work. Audiences in both Canada and abroad have applauded and embraced previous versions of these productions.  We invite you to come see why we think “theatre” should be listed as one of Alberta’s richest natural resources.


By Anton Chekhov
World Premiere of a new version by Tom Wood
Directed by Bob Baker

With Pierre Brault, Catherine Fitch, David McNally, Wilma Pelly, Grant Reddick, Barbara Reese, Jan Alexandra Smith and Tom Wood
An NAC English Theatre/Citadel Theatre (Edmonton) coproduction.
April 21—May 7 at 19:30; April 23, 30, May 7 at 14:00 and 19:30 (no performances on Sundays and Mondays)

National Arts Centre, Theatre

On an isolated Alberta farm in 1928 life can be a struggle. For Vanya, that struggle has all been for the benefit of Alexander, the brilliant academic and pride of the family. Now Alexander and his enchanting young wife have come home to the Northern Alberta homestead causing upset routines, desperate self-reflection and unrequited yearnings. Tom Wood’s adaptation beautifullypreserves Chekhov’s dry, tragi-comic style where the lines between laughter, tears and rage are as blurry as a windbreak on a prairie horizon.

Tickets: From $27 to $59, Preview: $28, Students: ½ price

Tuesdays & Sundays
Written and Performed By Daniel Arnold and Medina Hahn
Directed by Wojtek Kozlinski
A DualMinds production

Thu, April 28, Fri, April 29, Sun, May 1, 20:00; Sat, April 30, 22:00
National Arts Centre, Studio

A passionate, humorous and haunting piece of theatre, the play was inspired by a true story and is set in Prince Edward Island, 1887. Long ago, two young innocents fell in love. Now in limbo, they awake to reveal what really happened. A "Top Ten Play of the Year" in Toronto, Edmonton, and Vancouver, Tuesdays & Sundays premiered at Theatre Network's NEXTFEST 2000, was published, and has toured to sold-out houses and garnered numerous awards across Canada and at the Edinburgh Festival, in New Mexico, Prague, and New York. Daniel and Medina adapted it for radio for the CBC and BBC, and the play is being adapted into a chamber opera and a feature film (Slate Films, UK).

Tickets: $20, Students: ½ price

Tornado Magnet: A Salute to Trailer Court Women
Written and Performed By Darrin Hagen
Directed by Chris Craddock
A Guys in Disguise production

Thu, April 28 and Sat, April 30, 21:00; Sun, May 1, 14:00
National Arts Centre, Fourth Stage

Tornado Magnet is Hagen’s look at growing up white-trash in a trailer court. It’s about class, culture and the prairies. This hilarious piece is directed by one of Canada’s hottest theatrical talents, Chris Craddock, a multi-award winning director, playwright and actor, and stars “Edmonton Queen” Darrin Hagen as Dotty Parsons, queen of the trailer court.

Tickets: $25, Students ½ price

Summer of My Amazing Luck
By Chris Craddock
Based on the novel by Miriam Toews
Directed by Bradley Moss

With Beth Graham, Chris Craddock and Caroline Livingstone
A Theatre Network Production

Fri, April 29 and Sat April 30, 19:30; Sun May 1, 14:00
University of Ottawa, Academic Hall,

Based on the novel by Miriam Toews, winner of a 2004 Governor-General’s Literary Award, Summer of my Amazing Luck tells the story of Lucy, a single mother who lives in a Winnipeg housing project, as she and her friend Lish hit the road in a beat-up van full of toys and kids, in search of a man from Lish’s past.  Nominated for a Stephen Leacock Award for Humour and part of NAC English Theatre’s 2004 On the Verge festival of new play readings, Summer of my Amazing Luck is a hilarious and heartbreaking journey that takes Lucy into her memories, and into her future. 

Tickets: $25, Students ½ price

An Eye for an Eye
Collectively created by Ghost River Theatre
Directed by Doug Curtis

With Karen Johnson-Diamond, Kira Bradley, Tony Eyamie and Duval Lang
A Ghost River Theatre Production

Thu, May 5 to Sat, May 7, 19:30; Sun May 8, 14:00
University of Ottawa, Academic Hall

An Eye for an Eye is an oil and gas, piss and vinegar musical cabaret. Collectively created by Ghost River Theatre, the play tells the story of Wiebo Ludwig, a Christian minister in northern Alberta who struggles against the oil and gas industry as development encroaches on his land. The play tracks the points of view of three others involved in the struggle—the RCMP, an oil and gas executive and a young girl who was tragically killed on Ludwig’s property. An Eye for an Eye won a Betty Mitchell Award in 2001 for Outstanding Musical.

Tickets: $25, Students ½ price

Time Stands Still
By Terry Ivins
Directed by Michelle Thrush

With Lorne Cardinal of the hit TV show Corner Gas and Glen Gould
A Crazy Horse Theatre Company Production

Wed, May 4 to Fri, May 6, 12:00
National Arts Centre, Fourth Stage

Funny, sad, touching and real,Time Stands Stillis a an intimate glimpse of twoaboriginal men who have been lifelong friends and are serving a five-year prison sentence for robbery. The story takes place in the present in their jail cell, where they share their fear, pain, and laughter at the harsh realities they each must face. Carl and Mark are from the Blood Nation in Southern Alberta, and although they have grown up together, each man has a unique perception of their situation. 

Tickets: $12, Students ½ price

The Incredible Adventures of Mary Jane Mosquito
Book, music and lyrics by Tomson Highway
Directed by Mieko Ouchi

With Julie Gelosky and Ryan Sigurdson
A Concrete Theatre (Edmonton) production

Sat. Apr. 30 at 13:00, 15:00 and 19:00, and Sun. May 1 at 11:00, 13:00 and 15:00
Recommended for ages 5 to 9
National Arts Centre, Studio

The Incredible Adventures of Mary Jane Mosquito is a charming musical cabaret in English with French and Cree. Born without wings, Mary Jane Mosquito is an outcast who eventually discovers her true voice through singing.

Tickets: $11.50


By Jocelyn Ahlf, Belinda Cornish and Celina Stachow
Directed by Ashley Wright

With Jocelyn Ahlf, Belinda Cornish, Jesse Gervais and Celina Stachow
A Panties Productions production

Thu, May 5, 22:00
University of Ottawa, Academic Hall

Burlesque tells the “absolutely true” account of mid-19th-century stage star Lydia Thompson and her British Blondes tour of America. Nominated for Betty Mitchell awards for both Outstanding Production of a Musical and Outstanding Independent Production, this play demonstrates the power of one woman’s imagination and drive.

Tickets: $10



Written and Directed By Stewart Lemoine
With Jeff Haslam, Davina Stewart and Leona Brausen

A Teatro La Quindicina Production
Fri, May 6 and Sat, May 7, 22:00
University of Ottawa, Academic Hall

An itinerant sailor leads a grieving society widow and her stoic housekeeper on an exhilarating journey into the heart of South America without ever leaving the living room. Pith! embraces the power of imagination through the medium of theatre. This incredibly popular and successful play has won many awards and nominations including the Fringe NYC Award for Overall Excellence in Playwriting, and Elizabeth Haynes Sterling Awards for Outstanding New Fringe Work and Outstanding Actor in a Leading Role.

Tickets: $10



Lecture-croissant de L`Unithéâtre
Artistic Director Daniel Cournoyer

Sun, May 1, 12:30
La Nouvelle Scène

Join L`Unithéâtre, under the artistic direction of Daniel Cournoyer, for brunch and readings of Franco-Albertan plays. These plays are part of the varied repertoire of the company and were produced during the last 10 seasons of this young theatre company. L`Unithéâtre has been producing professional French theatre for young and old since 1992 in Edmonton and has travelled all over Western Canada.

Tickets: $15

The National Arts Centre’s Alberta Scene is the second in a series of biennial regional festivals to take place in the nation’s capital which will showcase the best in Canadian arts and culture from coast to coast to coast. Six hundred established and emerging artists from Alberta will take part in over 95 events ranging from theatre, visual arts, film and literature, to country, Aboriginal, pop and classical music – and even culinary arts. For 13 days beginning April 28, 2005 and ending on May 10, 2005, it will be as if Alberta has moved to the nation’s capital.

Alberta Scene is presented by EPCOR and supported by Major Sponsors TSX Venture Exchange, The Banff Centre, and National Arts Centre Friends - Alberta. Performance Sponsors are Enbridge, CIBC, Suncor Energy Inc. and Capital Health. Media sponsors include CBC Radio-Canada, the National Post, the Ottawa Citizen, LeDroit, the Edmonton Journal, the Calgary Herald, and Y1O1 FM. Supporting Sponsors include Edmonton Festival City, Galaxie, CD Warehouse, mymusic.ca, Holiday Inn, Ontario Tourism Marketing Partnership Corporation and Big Rock Brewery.  Alberta Scene is grateful for support from the Government of Canada, the Government of Alberta, the Canada Council for the Arts, Western Economic Diversification Canada, and Foreign Affairs Canada.

Alberta Scene is grateful for support from the Government of Canada, the Government of Alberta, the Canada Council for the Arts, Western Economic Diversification Canada, and Foreign Affairs Canada.

Tickets for all Alberta Scene events are available in person at the NAC Box Office, or through Ticketmaster at (613) 755-1111 (a service charge applies to all Ticketmaster purchases), or online at www.nac-cna.ca For a detailed schedule of events and ticket information please visit www.albertascene.ca.

National Arts Centre
53 rue Elgin Street, Ottawa ON
Tel/Tél : 613.947.7000

University of Ottawa, Academic Hall
133 rue Séraphin-Marion Street, Ottawa, ON

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For additional information, please contact:
Mary Gordon
Communications advisor
National Arts Centre
613-947-7000 x.524