2007 BC1 November 2007
My first job in Canadian theatre is not the splashy Irish musical “Ha’penny Bridge,” which I lost at the movement audition. It is not one of the esteemed Toronto companies like Tarragon, Soulpepper or Canadian Stage, nor either of the great festivals elsewhere in Ontario, The Stratford Shakespeare Festival and The Shaw Festival. All of these, except for the lost cause “Ha’penny,” are significant aspirations of mine.
No, the first onstage acting job Canada has given me is a production of “Miracle on 34th Street” located over 4000 kilometers away from my new Toronto home. Chemainus is a quaint and picturesque little town on Vancouver Island in British Columbia.
The Chemainus Theatre Festival operates year-round, and does surprisingly good business. We are expected to sell out for much of our eight-week run.
In addition to the gratification of working on a play, Vancouver Island has some pretty amazing scenery. This is what I see from my bedroom window:
The next two shots are from The Malahat, a mountain between Chemainus and BC’s provincial capital, Victoria.
Here’s a view across islands in the Strait of Georgia to the mainland. In the distance is Mt. Baker in Washington State.
WIthout personal transportation, my views are usually limited to what is in walking distance. But before I leave in January, I hope to explore Victoria, Nanaimo, and more of Vancouver Island. Meanwhile, although I miss Katharine and our cats, I’m happily doing theatre, and my lodging even has a house cat who likes to curl up on me. Not bad at all.