Artistic experiences are essential to lifelong learning, enabling us to reflect upon ourselves and our world with new eyes. Live theatre encourages students of all ages to develop critical thinking, expand points of view, understand different perspectives, and foster a sense of identity, opinion and artistic appreciation. At NAC English Theatre we want every child, student, adult and elder to feel welcome and comfortable in the theatrical experience. Our goal is to foster dialogue, empathy and inspiration, and create a space where artistry, education and passion collectively take centre stage.
NAC English Theatre takes pride in bringing the best of Canadian theatre to our national stage. All our student matinees feature artist Talkbacks – a chance to meet, explore and share with the people behind the plays. Most productions have companion study guides including curriculum connections, classroom activities and discussion questions, giving educators tools to engage their students in meaningful conversations.
We're pleased to present the 2018/19 Season English Theatre Student Matinees.
We hope you will join us for some or all of these diverse, unique, Canadian stories.
Grade 10 – College/University | Curriculum connections in Literature, Cultural Studies, Disability Studies, Drama
Adapted from William Shakespeare and Directed by
Set and Costume Designer
When he learns his father’s death was no accident, Prince Hamlet sets out to find the truth for himself. Staring down his own mortality, Hamlet uses theatrical trickery to gain a confession from his uncle, and ultimately becomes a killer himself. Visionary director Ravi Jain brings forward a Hamlet for our rapidly changing times: a daring, stylish and inclusive take on the world’s most famous play. The national tour of this highly-acclaimed retelling of this play is not to be missed.
Grade 9 – College/University | Curriculum connections in Canadian History, Social Sciences, Cultural Studies, Drama
On a warm spring day in 1734, “troublesome slave” Marie-Joseph Angélique set fire to the city of Montreal. Or so the story goes. With dreams of escaping the false safety of domestic servitude in New France for freedom in New England, Angélique was instead condemned for the crime. But was she truly guilty? From playwright Lorena Gale, Angélique weaves seamlessly between historical and contemporary times, speaking to us through the flames with an urgent message from the past to our own time.
Grade 8 – College/University | Curriculum connections in Drama, Social Sciences, Psychology, Canadian Studies
Rebecca Auerbach, Jason Chesworth, Gil Garratt, George Meanwell, J.D. Nicholsen, Gemma James Smith, Birgitte Solem and Severn Thompson
In one of the wildest frauds in Canadian history, Arlan Galbraith built a bird-breeding empire called Pigeon King International, using investments from hundreds of his neighbours and fellow farmers. For seven years, he offered a lifeline of financial hope to people whose luck had nearly run out. But was he really a scheming con man? Or a hapless victim of his own preposterous dream? The Pigeon King tells Galbraith’s incredible story, and reminds us that even well-meaning lies eventually come home to roost.
Grade 8 – College/University | Curriculum connections in Music, Drama, Canadian Studies, Science, Social Studies
Music Composed and Arranged By
In the final moments of his extraordinary life, east coast whale researcher Jon Lien tried desperately to tell his wife something, which she struggled to understand. Between Breaths floats through the inspiring career of the man who freed more than 500 whales from fishing nets. From his unexpected first encounter with a whale, Lien worked to earn the trust of the injured giants, as well as the fishermen whose nets accidentally entrapped them. With an evocative, live score by The Once, this moving work by renowned playwright Robert Chafe (The Colony of Unrequited Dreams) examines what it means to find your passion and how to let it go.