For Immediate Release Sept 29, 2014

Awards Launch Season of Firsts for Theatre Erindale!

[Mississauga ON, September 2014] On Friday September 19th at the Erindale Studio Theatre, the new Theatre Erindale season launched with Awards for the top achievers of 2013-2014. This year the theme is “Lovers in a Dangerous Time”, and the selection of plays features not only multiple takes on some great love stories, but more firsts than ever before.

For starters, there are two takes on the Romeo and Juliet story. One is a comedy – yes, a comedy! – written at the same time as Shakespeare by the greatest of Spanish playwrights, Lope de Vega – The Capulets and the Montagues. The other is Shakespeare’s play, but condensed and adapted into a high-concept modern-dress version called Occupy Verona. Both are Canadian premières. Our annual world première adaptation is Charlotte Gray’s bestseller The Massey Murder, detailing the effect on 1914 Toronto of the lethal reaction by a maid to the improper advances of her master. Then there’s the American classic Picnic, about a Labour Day romance in 1950s Kansas, successfully revived recently in New York, Chicago, and at the Shaw Festival. And lastly, an extraordinary drama from Nova Scotia about a rebellion of the ‘freaks’ in P.T. Barnum’s museum during the American Civil War, in its ‘rest-of-Canada’ première.

To top it all off, the company has just moved into its wonderful new rehearsal and storage facilities in Deerfield Hall at UTM, and will be offering tours with a ticket to the first production.

So theatre students are already extra busy this year, and that makes it tough to earn enough to keep afloat. Fortunately the Program has generous benefactors. These include the late Arthur Lindsay Fernie – responsible for a whole series of bursaries and scholarships; Professor Emeritus Roger Beck and Janet Beck – donors of three annual endowed awards; the Faculty of the program from both UTM and Sheridan; and the generous patrons of Theatre Erindale itself, whose donations to the scholarship fund provided a record number of bursaries again this year.

The evening included a sumptuous pot luck dinner and exciting entertainment from some of the winners, including Brittany Miranda, Rachelle Goebel, Jovan Kocic, Sarah Kern, Angelica Appelman, Eilish Waller, Giovanna Pandullo, Olivia Orton, Paige Falardeau, Stuart Hefford, and Hannah Ehman.

Presented by UTM Chair Holger Syme, the Fernie Entrance Scholarships for top audition scores combined with the highest high school marks went to Jillian Robinson of Tecumseh, Amanda McPherson of Oakville, and Lucy Morgan of Port Stanley. Lauren Wolanski of Richmond Hill and Sarah Hime of Mississauga won the Fernie Scholarships for first year, while Kyra Weichert of Ottawa and Nathaniel Voll of Kitchener won for second year. Tops in Acting in the intensive third year courses was Courtney Keir of Markham, while academic honours went to Madeleine Brown of Peterborough and Hannah Ehman of Porcupine.

Two Memorial Awards addressed unique achievements. The David Séguin Award for “a passion for the theatre” (donated by the Seguin family of Stratford) went to Stuart Hefford of Hamilton, and the Meg Young Award for “progress and personal growth” (donated by Artistic Director Patrick Young) went to Angelica Appelman of Kitchener.

The Beck Awards are special recognitions of achievement both inside and outside the program, endowed and presented by Roger and Janet Beck. Two Janet Beck Awards went to Brittany Miranda of Newmarket and Laura McCallum of Kitchener, the Natasha Afrosimoff Award for all-round promise went to Nathaniel Kinghan of Richmond Hill, and the Roger Beck prize for achievement both inside the program and beyond went to Samuel Turner of Fergus.

An inspiring rendition of “Home” (The Wiz) from Mercedes Morris of Scarborough closed the evening with a very suitable message!

All of the winners will be working on or appearing in Theatre Erindale’s “Lovers in a Dangerous Time” season, which opens with Lope de Vega’s amazing Romeo and Juliet comedy on Friday October 24th. Memberships featuring one show free are still on sale (orders postmarked after October 3rd must be picked up at the Box Office) and single tickets are now available. For further information, call the Box Office at 905-569-4369 or visit Image indicates that adjacent link to the right opens a new window www.theatreerindale.com.

Fernie Scholarship Winners with Artistic Director  Patrick Young (L) and  Chair of English & Drama Holger Syme (R).Fernie Scholarship Winners with Artistic Director Patrick Young (L) and Chair of English & Drama Holger Syme (R).