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Introducing the 2010/11 NAC English Theatre Company
Rehearsals Begin Now!

Ottawa, Ontario – The National Arts Centre is pleased to introduce the artists who will make up the 2010/11 NAC English Theatre Company. The Company will be bigger this season, expanding from 18 to 24 actors, who will work alongside playwrights, directors, designers, composers and stage managers. As well, the English Theatre Company will be participating in double the number of plays this season.

As Canada’s national theatre, the NAC English Theatre is  proud to nurture the work of Canadian theatre artists of all disciplines. The 2009/10 season celebrated the reinstatement of a resident company for the NAC English Theatre. Today, for our 2010/11 season, the NAC English Theatre, led by Artistic Director Peter Hinton, again assembles a dynamic and diverse team reflecting a variety of perspectives from across our country. The Company will participate in nativity by Vancouver’s Peter Anderson, Vimy by Edmonton’s Vern Thiessen, Saint Carmen of The Main by Montreal’s Michel Tremblay in a new translation by Montreal’s Linda Gaboriau -- and our season opens with a classical production of William Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet.

“Last year we re-assembled a resident company of actors at the NAC English Theatre, and we are happy to say that company is here to stay,” said Peter Hinton. “This year we are bringing back some familiar faces, plus many new artists drawn from across the country; from British Columbia to Newfoundland.”

Introducing the 2010/11 season’s NAC English Theatre Company:

Actors
Michael Blake (Raised and based in Toronto, ON). Michael will appear in Romeo & Juliet and nativity.
Patricia Cano (Raised and based in Sudbury, ON). Patricia will appear in nativity and Saint Carmen of The Main.
Réjean Cournoyer (Raised in Halifax, NS and based in Vancouver, BC). Réjean will appear in nativity and Saint Carmen of The Main.
Diane D’Aquila (Raised in Minneapolis, MN and based in Toronto, ON). Diane will appear in nativity and Saint Carmen of The Main and is the Assistant Director for Romeo & Juliet.
Nicolas Di Gaetano (Raised and based in Ottawa, ON). Nick will appear in Vimy and Saint Carmen of The Main.
John Doucet (Raised and based in Ottawa, ON). John will appear in Vimy and Saint Carmen of The Main.
Todd Duckworth (Raised in Texada Island, BC and based in Ottawa, ON). Todd will appear in nativity and is the Assistant Director for Saint Carmen of The Main.
Randi Helmers (Raised in Kingston, ON and based in Toronto, ON). Randi will appear in nativity and Saint Carmen of The Main.
Marcel Jeannin (Raised and based in Montreal, QC). Marcel will appear in Romeo & Juliet and nativity.
Ron Kennell (Raised and based in Stratford, ON). Ron will appear in nativity and Saint Carmen of The Main.
Jonathan Eliot Koensgen (Raised and based in Ottawa, ON). Jonathan will appear in Vimy.
Jani Lauzon (Raised in Cranbrook, BC and based in Toronto, ON). Jani will appear in nativity and Saint Carmen of The Main.
Jean Leclerc (Raised in Montreal, QC and based in St-Césaire, QC and New York City). Jean will appear in nativity and Saint Carmen of The Main.
Kevin Loring (Raised in Lytton, BC and based in Vancouver, BC). Kevin will appear in Vimy and Saint Carmen of The Main.
James Stuart Macdonald (Raised and based in St. John’s, NL). Jamie will appear in Vimy and Saint Carmen of The Main.
Alex McCooeye (Raised and based in Montreal, QC). Alex will appear in nativity and Saint Carmen of The Main.
Robert Persichini (Raised in Timmins, ON and based in Stratford, ON). Robert will appear in nativity and Saint Carmen of The Main.
Jackie Richardson (Raised and based in Toronto, ON). Jackie will appear in Saint Carmen of The Main.
Karen Robinson (Raised in Kingston, Jamaica, Calgary, AB and based in Toronto, ON). Karen will appear in Romeo & Juliet, nativity and Saint Carmen of The Main.
Laara Sadiq (Raised in Thornhill, ON and based in Vancouver, BC). Laara will appear in Romeo & Juliet, nativity and Saint Carmen of The Main.
Michael Spencer-Davis (Raised in Winnipeg, MB and based in Stratford, ON). Michael will appear in Romeo & Juliet and nativity.
Katie Swift (Raised in Sussex, NB and based in Toronto, ON). Katie will appear in Vimy and Saint Carmen of The Main.
Dayna Tekatch (Raised in Vancouver, BC and based in Toronto, ON). Dayna will appear in Romeo & Juliet and Saint Carmen of The Main and is the Choreographer for Romeo & Juliet and nativity.
Joey Tremblay (Raised in Ste-Marthe, SK and based in Regina, SK). Joey will appear in Romeo & Juliet, nativity and Saint Carmen of The Main.

Creative Team
Bonnie Beecher
(Raised in Montreal, QC and based in Toronto, ON). Bonnie is Lighting Designer for Saint Carmen of The Main.
Judith Bowden (Raised in Essex, UK and Winnipeg, MB and based in Toronto, ON). Judith is the Set and Costume Designer for nativity.
Nick Carpenter (Raised in Ottawa, ON and based in Montreal, QC). Nick is the Musical Director/Composer for Romeo & Juliet.
Leah Cherniak (Raised and based in Toronto, ON). Leah is the Director of nativity.
Allen Cole (Raised in Halifax, NS and based in Toronto, ON). Allen is the Musical Director/Composer for nativity and Saint Carmen of The Main.
Paula Danckert (Raised in Toronto, ON and based in Ottawa, ON). Paula is Company Dramaturg and Artistic Associate for NAC English Theatre.
David Dean (Raised in Thornhill, ON and Auckland, New Zealand and based in Ottawa, ON). David is Company Historian for NAC English Theatre.
Jean-François Gagnon (Raised and based in Montreal, QC). Jean-François is Fight Director for Romeo & Juliet.
Louise Guinand (Raised in Peterborough, ON and based in Stratford, ON). Louise is Lighting Designer for Romeo & Juliet.
Linda Moore (Raised in Winnipeg, MB and based in Halifax, NS). Linda is the Director of Vimy.
Sandy Moore (Raised in Dartmouth, NS and based in Halifax, NS). Sandy is Composer and Sound Designer for Vimy.
Jock Munro (Raised in Ottawa, ON and based in Meech Lake, QC). Jock is Lighting Designer for Vimy and nativity.
Brian Perchaluk (Based in Winnipeg, MB). Brian is Set and Costume Designer for Vimy.
Christina Poddubiuk (Raised in Montreal, QC and based in Stratford, ON). Christina is Set and Costume Designer for Romeo & Juliet.
Emily Porter (Raised in Buffalo, NY and based in Toronto, ON). Emily is Sound Designer for Saint Carmen of The Main.
Eo Sharp (Raised in Toronto, ON and based in Montreal, QC). Eo is Set and Costume Designer for Saint Carmen of The Main.

Stage Management
Laurie Champagne
(Raised and based in Ottawa, ON). Laurie is Stage Manager for nativity and Assistant Stage Manager for Romeo & Juliet.
Michael Hart (Raised in Halifax, NS and based in Stratford, ON). Michael is Production Stage Manager for the 2010/11 Season.
Rebecca Miller (Raised and based in Ottawa, ON). Rebecca is Assistant Stage Manager for nativity.
Samira Rose (Raised in Chisholm Township, ON and based in Ottawa, ON). Samira is Stage Manager for Vimy and Assistant Stage Manager for Saint Carmen of The Main.

Making this an even grander event for the NAC English Theatre season are three partnerships with institutions in Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto. Montreal’s National Theatre School of Canada marks their 50th Anniversary by collaborating with the NAC on Romeo & Juliet. Vimy celebrates a first-time partnership between the NAC English Theatre and Ottawa’s Great Canadian Theatre Company, and Saint Carmen of The Main is a co-production between the NAC and Canadian Stage in Toronto.

As noted by Peter Hinton, the productions are as varied as the artists who evoke them on the stage.

Performed on the Shakespearean thrust stage, William Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet, directed by Peter Hinton, will open the season, with the English Theatre Company featured alongside the English Theatre graduating class of the National Theatre School of Canada (NTS). Those students, now in their third and final year at NTS, will be playing the youthful roles of Romeo and Juliet and their contemporaries. In addition, Set and Costume Design and Production graduating students from NTS will apprentice on this production.

"Romeo & Juliet is a play that places the consequences of young love in a society of old world politics and family law --with tragic implications. The exchange between our finest national artists and a new generation of young theatre professionals expresses every aspect of our role as a gathering place to examine the interplay of tradition and innovation."  

The Company will next be featured in a production of Vern Thiessen’s Vimy, directed by Linda Moore, a powerful story told by five soldiers and one dedicated nurse after the battle for Vimy Ridge. This special presentation will be the first-ever co-production between the NAC and the Great Canadian Theatre Company (GCTC), and will open on Remembrance Day.

Says Hinton: "We have collaborated with our friends at GCTC to commemorate Remembrance Day with Vern Thiessen's examination of one of Canada's most debated "defining" historical moments. This is a great play for actors and audiences as it examines the impact of world-changing events through intimate and personal perspectives."

The third production is a musical comedy from Peter Anderson: nativity directed by Leah Cherniak. The story takes a humourous look at the first Christmas as the evil Herod tries to prevent a new Prince from arriving. It’s a holiday treat for NAC audiences.

Enthuses Hinton: "Peter Anderson is truly a national treasure. He has taken the ancient form of the medieval mystery play, re-fashioned it in the spirit of a Christmas pageant, and created a play for the holidays that is inventive, modern and really funny. A great comic genius rules over all of his creations.”

The fourth and final production starring the English Theatre Company is a truly exciting event: the NAC English Theatre teams with Canadian Stage in Toronto for a co-production of Michel Tremblay’s Saint Carmen of The Main, newly translated by Linda Gaboriau and under the direction of Peter Hinton. 

“Michel Tremblay is one of the greatest playwrights from Quebec, indeed from Canada, and this play with its epic characters and full chorus is a perfect fit for our ensemble. We are proud to include a work like Saint Carmen of The Main, which has been fundamental in shaping our theatre and re-examines the power of art, and political expression.” states Peter Hinton. 

The NAC English Theatre is extremely proud to introduce this Company and to showcase these artists with three important producing partners.

“All of these plays examine the role that young people can play in the shaping of society,” said Peter Hinton. “They are informed by the past - but urgently concerned with making a better future. They offer a unique perspective on the challenges and necessities of our times.”

Rehearsals for Romeo & Juliet are set to begin September 13.

Embassy Hotel & Suites is proud to be the Official Hotel Partner for the National Arts Centre English Theatre.

For more detailed information about the artists and productions at the NAC English Theatre, click on www.nac-cna.ca/en/theatre/1011

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For more information, please call:
Sean Fitzpatrick
Communications Officer
National Arts Centre English Theatre
613-947-7000 ext. 389
Cell 613-899-9737
sfitzpat@nac-cna.ca
or visit the NAC website at http://www.nac-cna.ca

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