Theatre Ontario welcomes Carolee Mason as adjudicator for Theatre Ontario Festival 2019 in Richmond Hill. Carolee most recently adjudicated as the Western Ontario Drama League Festival preliminary adjudicator in 2017/18 and the Association of Community Theatres—Central Ontario (ACT-CO) Festival in 2015/16. This will be her first time adjudicating Theatre Ontario Festival, and marks the first Theatre Ontario Festival adjudicated by a graduate of Theatre Ontario’s Adjudicator Training Program, initiated in 2010.
Carolee has taught in the Theatre Department at Brock University, instructed practicing teachers and teacher candidates with the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, and has been the teacher/director of generations of high school drama students and countless community theatre groups. She is a frequent workshop leader with the Council of Drama and Dance Educators of Ontario, and has presented for drama educators internationally with the American Alliance of Theatre Educators and the International Drama and Education Association.
“Creative collaboration is one of the most engaging of human endeavours,” said Carolee. “Couple that with the spirit of community and discovery at the Theatre Ontario Festival, and the experience is heady! I am thrilled to adjudicate the 2019 Festival, to foster learning, and to celebrate achievements with my theatre colleagues from around the province.”
We are thrilled to welcome Richmond Hill-born actor RH Thomson as our Festival Honorary Chair for Theatre Ontario Festival 2019.
In 2015, Canadian stage and screen actor RH Thomson was awarded the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award for Lifetime Artistic Achievement and the ACTRA Award of Excellence. He was made a Member of the Order of Canada in 2010 and has been given an Honorary Doctorate from Trinity College, University of Toronto.
He has appeared in theatres across Canada and has filmed in Canada, the US, Greece and the Czech Republic. He has earned Gemini, Genie, Dora and Merritt awards for his work and recently directed The Crucible at Theatre Calgary, and in December 2018 is performing in The Message at the Tarragon Theatre Toronto. He is currently playing Matthew Cuthbert in the CBC/NETFLIX series Anne with an E for which he received the Canadian Screen Award. As well as being an advocate for the arts, he has worked on many history/education/arts projects. For the First World War Centenary, he built the multi lingual project The World Remembers-Le Monde Se Souvient, an international WWI Commemoration with installations across Canada and in eight other nations – www.theworldremembers.ca.
Read our article about RH Thomson in YorkRegion.com – RH Thomson recognizes the importance of community theatre.
Theatre Ontario Festival 2019 is excited to welcome Keith Barker as “Playwright-in-Person” at this year’s Festival. Keith will be reading from his work on Friday, May 17 at 1:30pm at The Curtain Club in Richmond Hill.
Keith Barker is an Algonquin Métis playwright, actor, and theatre director from Northwestern Ontario, and the current Artistic Director at Native Earth Performing Arts. He was a finalist for the Governor General’s Award for English Drama in 2018 for his play, This Is How We Got Here. Keith received a Saskatchewan and Area Theatre Award for Excellence in Playwriting and a Yukon Arts Award for Best Art for Social Change for his play, The Hours That Remain. Prior to taking the job at Native Earth, Keith served as a Theatre Program Officer for the Canada Council for the Arts.
We are particularly excited to welcome Keith to this Festival, as This Is How We Got Here will be presented by Gore Bay Theatre on Thursday, May 16 as the entry on behalf of QUONTA, the northeastern Ontario community theatre association. This is the first time since Theatre Ontario Festival 2007 that our Playwright-in-Person has also been the author of an entry chosen from a regional festival.
Playwright-in-Person has been part of Theatre Ontario Festival since 1999. The program brings professional playwrights to Festival communities for script readings, Q&A, and more. Playwright-in-Person is made possible by a grant from the Playwrights Guild of Canada’s “Play Connect” program, funded by the Canada Council. Recent Playwrights-in-Person include Lisa Codrington, Erin Shields, Donna-Michelle St. Bernard, and Damien Atkins.
We are also excited to welcome Playwrights Canada Press who will be bringing plays for sale on Thursday through Saturday of Festival, with their usual Festival discount—30% off one or two books, 50% off for three or more.
Sharon has been a member of The Curtain Club for more than 25 years. She has been involved in all aspects of producing plays and has served on the board of executives for many years.
She has been to over a dozen Theatre Ontario Festivals all over the province and is thrilled to welcome you all to Festival 2019!
This is Wayne’s 25th year as a member of The Curtain Club. He is a regular attendee at Theatre Ontario Festivals across the province as a participant—as part of a production—and this is his third time in the role of Festival Chair. A set designer at heart, Wayne has also taken on artistic and administrative roles at the Club—and has even been on stage. Once.
(That play he was in went on to win the Elsie for best production at Festival 2005! And his co-chair, Sharon, also acted in it…Marvin’s Room.)