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Opening April 24: The Mousetrap


Shuddering suspense and suspicious characters (with sordid pasts) – Christie’s greatest mystery is back! There’s a shot. And a scream! A murder has been committed, and the clues suggest that more victims of vengeance will soon fall.

At Monkswell Manor, a snowstorm is raging and has confined eight people (or, shall we say, suspects) to the old boarding house. The situation is indeed miserable – and quickly becomes murderous as a series of betrayals begin to unfold. Can you identify the killer?

Everyone is suspect, including the newlywed proprietors, the curious spinster, the wanna-be chef, a retired Army major, the miserable jurist, a strange lost motorist, and a police detective whose arrival offers anything other than safety.

Who will escape, and who will get trapped for good, when the world’s longest running play reveals its final twist?!

The Mousetrap, a classic Agatha Christie tale of intrigue, has been playing consecutively for over 60 years around the world. The production is returning to The Chemainus Theatre Festival stage, April 24 to May 30, 2015, due to popular audience demand. Also returning for this brilliant play are a superb cast of actors, including: Jay Lift, Chris Cope, Bernard Cuffling, Victor Dolhai, Ruby Joy, Leala Selina and Matthew Hendrickson.

Come see “The cleverest murder mystery of British Theatre” (The Telegraph).

Tickets are available now online and at the Chemainus Theatre Festival box office.

By |April 2nd, 2015|Categories: 2015 Season|0 Comments

Appreciating Our Volunteers


Volunteer appreciation week is April 12 to 18 and that’s one of my favorite quotes about the value of volunteers. Volunteers have truly kept the good ship Chemainus Theatre afloat through our first 23 years. There’s no doubt in my mind that we wouldn’t be here today if it wasn’t for the selfless contribution of volunteers. This past year alone 154 people volunteered a total of 6,127 hours. Checking coats, showing us to our seats, building costumes, pulling weeds, helping in the office, serving on the board of directors… no task is too great or too small.

Volunteerism is one of the things that make Canada the greatest place to live on Earth. Each year 12.7 million Canadians give 2 billion hours of time. Next chance you have be it here or elsewhere, say thank you to a volunteer who is giving their time to make your life better.

Randal Huber
Managing Director

By |March 24th, 2015|Categories: Theatre News, Your Support|0 Comments

Summer Theatre Camp Registration Open!


July 20-24, 2015  (Sorry this session is full) or July 27-31*

Ages 10 – 17

Join us for a week-long celebration and exploration of what makes theatre so incredible! You are eligible if you are between the ages of 10 and 17 years old. You won’t want to miss this experience.

We’ll explore performing, theatre games, movement, improvisation, music, script work, costumes and props. Instructors include industry specialists as well as guest actors who are starring in Chemainus Theatre Festival productions. Students will gain an insider’s view into Chemainus Theatre’s production facilities as the camp will be held in our Rehearsal Hall in our professional Production Facilities. At the end of the week, students have the opportunity to perform on the Chemainus Theatre Festival stage!

*Please note: the second week will be cancelled if there are less than 10 students. If cancelled, you will receive a full refund.

Click Here for Details

By |March 20th, 2015|Categories: Education|0 Comments

Ring of Fire Review: Terrific evening of Cash music

Samantha Currie and Jonas Shandel

By Andrea Rondeau, Cowichan Valley Citizen

If you’re in the mood for some dynamite country and gospel music, the Chemainus Theatre’s latest production Ring of Fire: Project Johnny Cash is for you.

And even if you’re not a fan of the iconic singer/songwriter when you go in, the quality of the presentation will make you one by the time you come out.

But you do need to be in the mood for an evening of music; this production is wallto-wall songs – 29 of them to be exact. If you’re looking for a complex storyline you won’t find it. Some sparse dialogue elucidates a few facts from Cash’s life and timeline, but it’s really just there to glue together the songs, which create a sense of time and place by themselves anyway.

By |March 15th, 2015|Categories: 2015 Season|1 Comment

Ring of Fire Review: Johnny Cash Comes To Vancouver Island

Jonas Shandel

By Gretta Kennedy, Traveling Islanders

Do you remember when music used to tell a story?

It didn’t just make you want to get up and dance, it helped you understand more about the true lives of people who walk the earth just like you.

When you were down and out, it helped you know you weren’t alone. When you felt like shouting from the rooftops in joy, it reminded you that others have felt the same way.

Jay and I walked into the theatre to see a simple and inviting stage set with drums, keyboard, guitars, and microphones. And it was there we settled into this musical revue on the life and times of Mr. Johnny Cash, narrated by an older version of the Man in Black himself.

If you’re a fan of his music, you’ll love sitting and listening. If you don’t know anything about him, you’ll be surprised at what songs you know and I dare you to keep your feet from tapping.

Continue Reading

By |March 11th, 2015|Categories: 2015 Season|0 Comments

Ring of Fire Review: Janis La Couvée


By Janis La Couvée, JanisLacCouvee.com

It’s a long way from the wet west coast of Vancouver Island to the hills and fields of Arkansas, and the music halls of Nashville, yet music has the power to tie us together in a celebration of family and community.

Mining this fundamental truth, Chemainus Theatre artistic director Mark DuMez opens the 2015 season with Ring of Fire: Project Johnny Cash. If the enthusiastic and all-ages audience at Sunday’s matinée is any indication, Cash fans are legion.

Dumez and Musical Director Zachary Stevenson (well-known to Victoria audiences for roles in Urinetown, the Buddy Holly Story, Hank Williams-the Show He Never Gave, and FIRE!), inspired by the Broadway jukebox musical Ring of Fire, winnowed the vast catalogue of Cash hits (a massive undertaking given his nearly five decades in the music business and over 1200 songs) to a carefully chosen list of 30 titles well-known to even the most casual listener.

By |March 8th, 2015|Categories: 2015 Season, Reviews|0 Comments

Ring of Fire Review: Chemainus Theatre Cashing in

Samantha Currie / Jonas Shandel

By Lexi Bainas, Cowichan Valley Citizen

The story of a country music legend is being told at the Chemainus Theatre starting Feb. 20 as Ring of Fire: Project Johnny Cash hits the stage.

This presentation follows the life of the inimitable Man in Black from his rockabilly roots in Arkansas to country’s hallowed halls: the Grand Old Opry.

Running until April 11, the revue-format all-ages show features more than 30 hit songs matched with narrated insights that give you the scoop on Cash.

Ring of Fire, conceived by William Meade and created by Richard Maltby Jr., is more than a biography or collection of Cash’s songs.

Continue Reading

By |March 3rd, 2015|Categories: 2015 Season, Reviews|0 Comments

Ring of Fire: Meet the Cast, Designers & Creators



Richard Maltby, Jr. includes among his Broadway credits: Conceived/Directed Ain’t Misbehavin’ (1978 Tony, NY Drama Critics, Outer Critics and Drama Desk Awards. Also Tony Award for Best Director); Fosse (1999 Tony, Outer Critics and Drama Desk Awards). Lyricist: Miss Saigon (Evening Standard Award 1990, Tony Nomination for Best Score 1991). Director and Co-lyricist of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Song & Dance, 1986 (Tony Award for star Bernadette Peters). With composer David Shire: Director/Lyricist Baby, 1983 (book by Sybille Pearson; seven Tony Award nominations); Lyricist: Big, 1996 (book by John Weidman. Tony nomination: Best Score). Off-Broadway credits: Director/Lyricist Starting Here, Starting Now, 1977 (Grammy Award nomination); Closer Than Ever, 1989 (Outer Critics Circle Awards: Best Musical, Best Score). Contributes devilish crossword puzzles to Harpers Magazine. Son of well-known orchestra leader; married to Janet Brenner; five children: Nicholas, David, Jordan, Emily and Charlotte.



Bill Meade began his career as a musician. He has been a featured soloist with numerous orchestras, including the Zurich Philharmonic, Prague Philharmonic, and Jacksonville Symphony. He has produced concerts throughout the U.S. and Europe with artists ranging from Arlo Guthrie to BB Kind. Television: “The Miss America Pageant,” “The Super Bowl Half Time Show,” “Sex and The City,” “Love Monkey,” and “Sesame Street.” On Broadway, he has been involved with more than 50 musicals. He is a Grammy-nominated record producer with a wide range of theatrical releases to his credit, from Hello, Dolly! with Carol Channing to Elegies by William Finn.

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Timothy is an accomplished theatre, voice-over and film/TV actor and is a graduate of the Grant MacEwan Theatre Arts Program. Career highlights include The 39 Steps and Guys and Dolls (Chemainus Theatre Festival), Mamma Mia (Mirvish Productions), West Side Story (Vancouver Opera), The Light in the Piazza (PSP), Little Shop of Horrors (Citadel Theatre/Arts Club). This show is dedicated to a young cowboy who left us to soon… Eric Lehmann. Always for Lindy XOXO.



Scott Carmichael is delighted to be making his Chemainus Theatre Festival debut. An actor and musician, Scott is a veteran of seven productions of Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story (Arts Club, Stage West Calgary, Magnus Theatre, Sudbury Theatre Centre, Theatre Aquarius). Selected other theatre include Sleuth, 12 Angry Men, Blood Brothers, The 39 Steps, You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown (Rose Theatre), Doubt, and Urinetown, The Musical (Georgetown Globe). Favourite role: Father to his son, Jaden.



Andrea is thrilled to be making her Chemainus Theatre debut. Favourite theatre credits include three national tours of The Big Picture (Arts Engine, Brookstone), and four years with the critically acclaimed musical 2000 Candles (Arts Engine). Andrea is also the Education Coordinator at Chemainus Theatre Festival and loves sharing her passion for theatre with children all over Vancouver Island. Thanks Alana, Conor & Paul! www.andreacross.com



Samantha is a graduate of the AMDA in New York. Select credits include: Eve in Waiting for the Parade (Chemainus Theatre Festival); Blanche in Brighton Beach Memoirs (Blue Bridge Repertory Theatre); Zerbinette in Delicious Lies (Chemainus Theatre Festival); and Marian Paroo in The Music Man (TUTS). She also teaches theatre and musical theatre at Adage Studios. Special thanks to Mark, Zach and among her klediments, her family, Alex, Cecilia and her autoharp.



Set & Projection Designer

T. Erin Gruber is an independent theatre designer with experience in set, lighting, costume and projected media design. She holds a degree in Theatre Design from the University of Alberta and is a founding member of the ShowStages video collective, a group expanding the boundaries of projected media role in theatre (www.showstages.com). For more information: www.eringruber.com.



Costume Designer

Crystal is a graduate of the Fashion Design & Technology Program at Kwantlen University College. Past costume designs at the Chemainus Theatre Festival include Waiting for the Parade, All Shook Up (Gateway Theatre co-production), Countryside Christmas, and Ah, Wilderness! She would like to thank her parents for their support and encouragement in what probably seemed an impractical career path at the time.



Lighting Designer

It is always a pleasure to design at the Chemainus Theatre. Past favourites include Buddy:The Buddy Holly Story and The Miracle Worker. Other recent work includes Gaslight ( Blue Bridge Theatre) and The Incomplete Folksinger (The Other Guys Theatre). Upcoming projects include MacBeth (Blue Bridge, where she is also the General/Theatre Manager). Rebekah has a BFA (Theatre) and an MFA (Visual Art) from UVic.



Mark is excited not only to be making his Chemainus Theatre Festival debut in Ring of Fire, but also his Vancouver Island winter debut, which promises to be much warmer than he’s used to. This actor/singer/sailor/filmmaker was born in Fredericton and is now based in Toronto. Select Theatre: Music Man (Port Hope), Buddy Holly Story (Sudbury), Cabaret (Northern Stage); Film/TV: Covert Affairs. @Mark_MacRae. Proud member of CAEA & ACTRA.



Singer, songwriter, musician and performer, Jonas now lives in Chemainus! He is best known as co-founder of the Vancouver band Headwater which for a decade has headlined festivals and concert halls throughout Canada and Europe. When Jonas received a call from Nashville, he was on the first plane to music city where he now co-writes material with the best in the business. Jonas has recorded a collection of classic country songs for this show. “Six Days on the Road” is available in the lobby after the show. Visit Jonasshandel.com for more info.



Musical Director

Zachary is enjoying being home on the island for the third year running making his debut as musical director in Ring of Fire. An accomplished actor, singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, audiences will recognize him best as “Buddy” having performed in ten productions of The Buddy Holly Story throughout North America including twice here in Chemainus. He has performed in Hank Williams: the Show He Never Gave, Red Rock Diner, FIRE, Urinetown, Hair, Assassins among others. Follow Zach on facebook or visit www.zacharystevenson.com.



Stage Manager

Anne spent last season Stage Managing with Patrick Street Productions on Floyd Collins and Out of a Dream with the Arts Club Theatre Company as Assistant Stage Manager on Mary Poppins. Other recent and favourite productions include Stage Managing Blue Box with Nightswimming Theatre in Vancouver, The Light in the Piazza with Persephone Theatre in Saskatoon and Café Daughter with Gwaandak Theatre in Whitehorse.



Sound Designer

Recent design credits include Gaslight (Bluebridge Theatre), Sherlock Holmes, Over The River and Through The Woods, Les Mis, Buddy, It’s A Wonderful Life (Chemainus Theatre Festival), Home Is A Beautiful Word ( The Belfry Theatre), Fresco (Shadbolt Centre / The Cultch), Noises Off (Western Canada Theatre), Circle Mirror Transformation (Arts Club Theatre). Upcoming ; 39 Steps (Western Canada Theatre), Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike (The Belfry Theatre).



Kraig is thrilled to be here in beautiful Chemainus. He has appeared all across Canada in theatrical shows such as Songs For A New World, The Wedding Singer, The Last Resort, Forever Plaid and The Buddy Holly Story to name a few. When not in theatre, Kraig is kept extremely busy working as a bassist/ vocalist for numerous bands/ensembles in southern Ontario. as always, love to Stephanie. enjoy the show!



Apprentice Stage Manager

For the Chemainus: Debut. Elsewhere: Apprentice SM: A Bedfull of Foreigners, Lend me a Tenor and Lights, Camera, Christmas… (Upper canada Playhouse); On a First Name Basis, Henry and Alice: Into the Wild and I’ll be Back Before Midnight (Lighthouse festival Theatre); Laura’s Cow (Canadian Children’s Opera Company); Queen Milli of Galt (Theatre Aquarius); SM: The Greatest Story Never Told (Smile Theatre); ASM: Half Life (rose Theatre) Education: recent graduate of the University of Windsor’s Ba(H) Drama program.



Assistant Director

Melissa is thrilled to be back in Chemainus working on this show. as a choreographer, Melissa’s credits include: The Wizard of Oz, Seussical (carousel Theatre), As You Like It, The Comedy of Errors (Bard on the Beach) and Oklahoma! (Chemainus.) Melissa has also appeared in: High Society, The Producers, Gypsy, Beauty and the Beast (Arts Club), Guys and Dolls (Chemainus.) She recently received her Masters Degree in Theatre from SOU.

By |February 28th, 2015|Categories: 2015 Season, Reviews|0 Comments