Monday, March 29, 2010

Actor Needed

So, life as a producer is never easy, and this past week well let me just say... that it is times like this that life as a producer is not only not easy but it down right sucks. In the past two weeks I've had our rehearsal venue fall thru and one of the actors pull out so now I am left scrambling to puzzle-peice together various different rehearsal venues as well as find an actor suitable to the role. All before they start rehearsal this coming Saturday.

And, on that note, here is a general posting for the role we need to fill:

Male role in Prodigals: a new play by Sean Minogue

Presented by Twenty-Something Theatre
Directed by Peter Boychuk

Run: April 27 – May 2, 2010, Havana Theatre
Audition Day: Friday, April 2, 2010

Rehearsals: Tues/Thurs evening and Sat/Sun daytime for the month of April (approx 50 hours). ***If you are not available for the stated rehearsal times DO NOT submit.

Require: 1 male (age 20-30) to play the role of Greg - A loudmouth drunk who lives off his “old country” Italian parents. He expects little from life and gets as much in return. He would prefer having a guaranteed good time over taking a risk any day. Greg has never had a real relationship because he’s emotionally immature. More than anything, he loves to bitch.

Synopsis of the play: Set in a small bar in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, six young underachievers await the results of a murder trial that’s hit close to home. Their world of drinking, sarcasm and missed opportunities is flipped upside down when a former friend returns from Toronto to testify in the trial, reopening old wounds and creating some new ones as well.

To submit please send your resume to auditions@twentysomethingtheatre.com

Deadline: 6pm Thursday, April 1, 2010

Please forward this on to anyone you may know who might be interested and available.

Many Thanks!

~Sabrina Evertt
Artistic Producer

Saturday, March 27, 2010

World Theatre Day: 2010

Today is World Theatre Day (you can read my message here) and to help celebrate this fact we are doing a one-day ticket promo.

We are offering a 2-for-1 special discount to our talkback performance of Prodigals coming up on April 29th. Bring a friend and get in for half the price of a regular ticket plus stay to chat with the cast, director and playwright of this brand new play. Local theatre blogger and playwright, Simon Ogden, will be moderating the talkback so it is sure to be a great night of theatre.

To take advantage of this special World Theatre Day promo email us at news@twentysomethingtheatre.com and we will send you a 2-for-1 coupon. Then all you have to do is print the coupon off and show it to the box office when you come to the theatre to purchase your tickets.

Please note that this special promo is only available at the door but you will be able to reserve tickets in advance through email if you’d like.

Looking forward to seeing you at theatre!

~Sabrina Evertt
Artistic Producer

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Ruby Slippers: Mexico City and The Russian Play

Last night I was invited to attend the Opening Night of two plays by Hannah Moscovitch, the 2009 Governor General nominated playwright for East of Berlin. I unfortunately didn’t get to see East of Berlin when it was here but I’ve heard nothing but rave reviews since. So I was looking forward to seeing this evening of one-acts very much and I was not disappointed. In this case, Moscovitch has penned two very witty yet poignant one-act plays, Mexico City and The Russian Play that not only break the fourth wall but shatter it to pieces.

In Mexico City the audience is greeted by a young couple on their nitty-gritty Mexican vacation. Not the package tour kind. No, they want to see “the real Mexico”. What makes this 25-minute gem so wonderful is that the actors speak mainly to the audience, in third person, except for at the very end. It is this disconnect that makes the whole husband-and-wife-bickering bit so great. They eat street food. They get lost. They end up caught in a rainstorm. They get annoyed with each other but in the end they kiss and makeup.

This same dry wit follows through into The Russian Play. Within the first few minutes the narrator and leading character, Sonya, immediately plays with the audiences pre-conceived ideas about Russian literature and the types of stories that we’ve come to expect from the likes of Chekov or Tolstoy. And, like Mexico City, Sonya speaks to the audience. Not only does she speak to the audience but she also refers to her story as a play. Definitely no fourth wall here. And, the way she tells her story is both hysterical and poignant. Colombe Demers who portrays Sonya is absolutely incredible as she flips back and forth between the narrator of her story and the voice of Sonya re-living the events of her life.

The stage was basically bare for both Mexico City and The Russian Play. Rather the mood and atmosphere were defined by lighting and sound. I especially enjoyed the Violinist (played by Tessa Cameron) in The Russian Play and how the music would heart-breakingly punctuate certain scenes. It goes to show you that good stories speak for themselves. The words created by the playwright allow us to imagine the setting and to me it was crystal clear.

Presented by Ruby Slippers and a production of 2b Theatre Company, Mexico City and The Russian Play are on stage together at Performance Works every night until this Sunday, March 28th with 2pm matinees on Saturday and Sunday. If you are interested in checking out one of Canada’s hot young writers (she’s only 30) you can get your tickets at VancouverTix.com.

(photo's courtesy of Ellie O'Day)

~Sabrina Evertt
Artistic Producer

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

What Theatre Means To Me

Saturday, March 27th is World Theatre Day. Last year at this time I had only recently joined the theatre blogging world, and was just getting my bearings, so I sat back and keenly observed as the day past. I saw the theatre world, artists from different pockets of the globe, come together to celebrate what we do. Wow. That is the power of community. That is the power of theatre.

This is what theatre means to me. To me theatre equals community.

We come together - audience, actors, designers, directors, stage managers, technicians, etc - to share in an experience that is unique to that moment and will never be replicated again. This is what I love about theatre. Theatre exists for living in the moment. It is always about being present. That is the power of a genuine shared experience. It has the power to change. To transform.

When writing my program notes for our production of The Shape of Things in 2007 I wrote “My goal, as Artistic Producer, is to create a community every night where we can share the stories of our lives with each other”. We are storytellers who pass on our stories generation after generation from community to community.

The ancient Greeks would gather together to eat and drink in celebration of Dionysus. It was a festival. A reason to party. It was bawdy. It was fun. It was poetry. It was entertainment. A community celebration. You ask anyone who started doing theatre - most of us when we were kids or teenagers - why they started, and maybe more importantly why they stayed, and I can almost guarantee that 99% of time it was because a) it was fun and b) it gave them a sense of community.

They may not say it exactly in that wording but that is what it essentially boils down to. A “sense of community” in psychological terms is defined as “a feeling that members have of belonging, a feeling that members matter to one another and to the group, and a shared faith that members’ needs will be met through their commitment to be together.”

And, there you have it. Every night at the theatre this is the experience that we share. We practitioners of theatre come together to share our stories and the audience comes together to share in their need to connect to the human experience through shared experience.

We laugh. We cry. We feel outraged. We see our lives reflected on stage. And, most importantly we connect with each other. We share a moment in time. We share our humanity. This is what makes theatre unique. This is what theatre means to me.


~Sabrina Evertt
Artistic Producer

Monday, March 22, 2010

Do You Really Want A Job?

Recently I put out a posting for a position with the design and production team for our upcoming production of Prodigals. And, every time I put out of posting looking to fill positions I am always amazed at the amount of weird applications I get. For example, in this past go around, I had someone literally just email me a link to their photo sharing account. No cover letter. No resume. Not even a paragraph of introduction in their email. Just one line that said “I have experience designing costumes, props, and things of that nature” and then a link.

So, out of curiousity, I clicked on the link to find an album entitled “things i have made”. Exactly like that. And in that album are about 12 photos of random wooden figurines and spacemen and other such "things of that nature".

Now, this leads me to think one of two things: 1) this is some kind of joke…hahaha, aren’t you funny and clever or b) this person is serious and doesn’t have a clue.

And, to be perfectly honest I’m still not sure which one it is because frankly that seems like a lot of effort to be a joke but it also lacks a lot of effort to make it a serious attempt at getting a job. I mean when someone sends in that sort of application my question is do you really want a job? do you really?

Isn’t it common sense that when you apply for a job you send in a cover letter and a resume? In my posting it even states right underneath the “How to Apply” section to “submit your cover letter and resume”. I think that pretty clearly states what I am looking for in your application. So even if it isn’t common sense to send a cover letter and resume then my next question is did you not read the posting?

Tip #1 for job seekers: READ THE ENTIRE POSTING AND FOLLOW THE INSTRUCTIONS.

Because if you can’t follow a few simple instructions on a job posting how am I supposed to trust that you can follow any sort of instruction in the actual position.

I was so flabbergasted by this application that I quickly sent out a tweet saying “Dear Applicant, Pls don't just send me a link to your photobucket acct. Maybe try a resume & cover letter?! Sincerely, Potential Employer” to which @ReallyTrulyProd sent me a tweet saying “@theatre_20 Likewise, when phoning to express interest in a job post, try leaving your full name & ph # twice in your msg. #jobhuntbasics”.

Thus prompting a short back and forth of the basics of job hunting including this gem: “@theatre_20 Another pet peeve: people who write 1 cover ltr, then send to 15 people. Then don't even use the bcc field! #jobhuntbasics”. And, furthermore, prompting me to write this blog.

So, I thought, hey let’s put together a list of basic tips (things we all think are common sense or certain pet peeves) and then, before I put out my next batch of postings for positions in April, I’ll post the list for all future job seekers to look at before they go shooting themselves in the foot. Because if people, like the person who emailed me, really do want to get a job then they need some help on what to do… or more likely what not to do.

So let’s help them out, ‘kay?! Leave me your tips, comments and any other suggestion.

~Sabrina Evertt
Artistic Producer

Friday, March 19, 2010

I Have A Crush

For real. I admit it. I have a theatre crush and her name is Bretta Gerecke.

I just got home from Elephant Wake at The Cultch and it was incredible. The script and performance by Joey Tremblay are both outstanding. Tonight, I stayed for the talk-back and he talked about the use of voice throughout the piece. His character is old yet remains stunted in youth so one moment he will be telling a story of his youth and then on a dime be reliving it in the moment as a 7-year old. His performance is truly captivating. I laughed and I’m not just saying this, I cried. Tears literally rolled down my face. It is not often that a play and a performance will affect me so strongly that I will shed actual tears. So, if you have a chance to see this piece I suggest you get down to The Cultch before Saturday. And, if you are financially strapped they even have a 2-for-1 tonight and for the Saturday matinee (at least that is what the front of house guy said in his speech).

Ok, now back to my crush. Ms. Gerecke was also the director & designer of Elephant Wake (making that yet another reason you should go check it out) and yet again her sense of aesthetic just blows my mind. The set was all a reflection of the meaning behind the character’s connection to papier mache (you’ll have to see it to fully understand what I’m talking about). The floor is made up of shredded paper. Every box, stool, prop is in a muted palette of white and off-white. His costume is a mixture of light greys and cream colours like that of an old newspaper. Every detail is accounted for. And, this is what I find absolutely amazing about her work.

Jerry Wasserman was right when he called this “the Bretta Gerecke season”. For me it started with Nevermore went through to Drowning Girls and now Elephant Wake. And every time it is the same thing. The same sense of aesthetic. It’s clean. And, not in the bacterial sense of the word but in the sense that nothing is out of place. Take the Drowning Girls: 3 white bathtubs, 3 white Edwardian wedding dresses, a white grid on the floor and minimal props like 3 laminated old newspapers (the laminated part so they wouldn’t get wet. There was lots of water. Lots). It’s contemporary in the same way that Nevermore was yet it re-calls a different time period without being a "period piece". And, I would say the same thing about Elephant Wake. It’s an aesthetic. And, it’s purely her own.

Then through a series of events (ok, ok, I google-stalked her. Don’t judge me. I am sure everyone who reads this has google-stalked someone at some point) I found out she also designed the sets for two of my favourite recent productions: Rigoletto with the Vancouver Opera and True Love Lies at Factory Theatre. And, on that note, I just want to say: Bretta, if you ever happen to come across my blog and read this post about me having a crush on you. I apologize. I’m not crazy. I swear.

Now two more things, I want to note, before I wrap up this ode to all things Bretta: 1) All 3 of these productions (Nevermore, Drowning Girls & Elephant Wake) originated in Edmonton. Again, what is it with this place?! The stuff that comes out of there is theatre at it’s best and 2) I am extremely impressed with the programming at The Cultch this year. Three of the best productions I have seen this season (Any Night, Nevermore and, now, Elephant Wake) have all been gifted to us here in Vancouver via The Cultch. So, kudos to Heather Redfern, Executive Director at The Cultch, for bringing all of this amazing theatre to us. I’m thinking I might just buy myself a subscription for next year.


~Sabrina Evertt,
Artistic Producer

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

The Director & Cast

Peter Boychuk – Director

Peter is thrilled to be working with Twenty-Something Theatre on this fantastic new play. Some of Peter’s favourite directing credits include The Chamber for Dark Horse Theatre in Montreal, Nothing Like The Sun at Sage Theatre’s Ignite Festival in Calgary, and How He Lied To Her Husband for Concordia University. After Prodigals closes, he will driving up to Barkerville to direct three shows for the historic Theatre Royal. Peter is currently pursuing his Masters in Fine Arts at the University of Victoria under the supervision of Joan MacLeod. His one-act plays include Afterglow, which is published in the anthology Two Hands Clapping; Fortunate Son, which was awarded the Stanley Mills Purchase Prize, Best of the Fest at ACToberfest 2007, and an Honourable Mention in the National Playwriting Competition; and Chainmail Bikini. He is nearing completion on two new full-length plays: Shelter from the Storm and Crossing. He lives in Vancouver with his wonderful wife Joan and their grumpy cat, Leo.

Timothy Johnston – Wesley


Timothy is pleased to return to Twenty-Something Theatre after a five year hiatus, having played Warren Straub in their inaugural production, This is Our Youth. Originally from Maillardville, B.C., Tim studied Theatre at both Capilano University and the University Of Victoria. Select credits include: Hank in Ride The Cyclone (Atomic Vaudeville), Aladdin in Aladdin (Kaleidoscope), Wallace in Toothpaste & Cigars (VEC) and Cat In The Hat in Seussical (Random Entertainment).

Tara Pratt – Jen


A graduate of the University of Alberta’s drama program in 2002, Tara was last seen as Jeri in Twenty-Something Theatre’s production of Unidentified Human Remains and the True Nature of Love. Other stage credits include Hamlet and several productions with Gnomadic Artists for the Edmonton Fringe Festival. Film credits include The Red Rooster (Cinemanovel Films) and the award-winning short film, Food for the Gods.

Aslam Husain – Eliot


Aslam Husain is a recent graduate of UBC’s Acting Program. Recent roles include Gilbert Blythe in Anne (Chemainus), Peter in The Secret World of Og (Carousel) and Nick in New Canadian Kid (Green Thumb). Before graduating Aslam had the privilege to star in a production that became the first North American entrant in the International Theatre Festival SETKANI/ENCOUNTER in the Czech Republic.

Abby Renee Creek – Nina


Currently on tour with Salt Water Moon for the Arts Club, Abby is pumped to be working with Twenty-Something Theatre again! Since graduating from Capilano University, Abby has been fortunate enough to work as an actor, director, choreographer, vocal coach, front of house manager, drama teacher and audition coach. Favourite acting credits include Mary (Salt Water Moon, Arts Club), BeeBee (Suburbia, Twenty-Something Theatre), and Masha (Three Sisters, 3rd St Theatre Series).

Brandyn Eddy – Nips


This is Brandyn’s 1st show with Twenty-Something and 2nd with director Peter Boychuk. Past credits include: Jon in tick, tick…BOOM! (Ovation Award winner: Outstanding Performance Lead Male), Seymour in Little Shop of Horrors, Derek in Chainmail Bikini, Annas in Jesus Christ Superstar, Indio in West Side Story, the Scarecrow in The Wiz, Aramis in The Three Musketeers, Cain in Children of Eden, Guido in Nine, The Barker in Woyzeck, Oberon in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Napoleon in The Man of Destiny.

Shaun Aquiliine – Greg


Shaun’s love for the stage led him to study Theatre at Douglas College. There, under the tutelage of Allan Lysell, he performed in Book of Days and Macbeth. Shaun and three close friends put up the self-written Hello, My Name is the President, Glengarry Glen Ross, and a critically lauded production of Little Shop of Horrors. Shaun then enrolled in the UBC acting program. He and his friend Danny Rempel began research for Shaun’s first screenplay, A Blue Collar Love. He completed the script while performing in Mother Courage. Throughout his UBC tenure, Shaun played many lead roles until leaving the program in 2008 to pursue a career in film. He has since written two more screenplays, one of which he is producing and hopes to complete by Winter's end, 2012.

Catch them all on stage (well except for Peter) in Prodigals at the Havana theatre from April 27 - May 2, 2010. Buy your tickets here.

~Sabrina Evertt
Artistic Producer

Friday, March 12, 2010

Blogiversary

Tomorrow is my blogiversary. On March 13th of last year I just started writing this blog without much intention behind it other than to talk about our upcoming production. Well it turned out to be so much more than that because soon I was also discussing ideas. Then people started leaving comments and a conversation was started. Next thing I knew I was invited to attend the PuSh Festival and discuss the shows on my blog (I won’t say “review” because that term unknowingly opened a whole can of worms). In one year, my little blog, took on a life of it’s own and for that I can only say thank you.

First, I have to say a big thank you to Simon Odgen (@thenextstagemag). A couple weeks after that first blog post he dedicated a whole post of his own to introduce me to the blogging world without me even asking him to do so. I was stunned but I couldn’t have asked for a better intro.

Next I have to say thanks to Rebecca Coleman (@rebeccacoleman) & Lois Dawson (@SMLois) who, along with Simon, became my first followers on twitter and welcomed me into the scary world of social media. Soon after Simon wrote his post Rebecca included my company in a post profiling three of the young companies in town. Oddly enough I’ve yet to meet Rebecca in the real world (we’ll have to change that soon, I think) but last year around this time I first met up with Lois to talk theatre biz (we’ll work together soon, hopefully).

I’ve also got to thank Kenji Maeda (@kenjimaeda), another social media friend whom I’ve never met…yet, who soon after Simon and Rebecca mentioned me in their posts, re-posted my post on tips for auditioning on his website/blog.

These 4 people early on supported my blogging efforts and gave me the confidence to continue. I can’t thank you enough.

Thank you to a few of the other individuals for posting comments & participating in the discussion: Travis Bedard (@travisbedard), Nancy Kenny (@nancykenny), Brittney (@bfg85), Sterling Lynch (@SterlingLynch), Jessica Ruano (@jessicaruano) & Andrea Loewen (@PacificTheatre). Plus thanks to Nicole Stodard (@DramaDaily), who most recently added me to her list of female theatre bloggers.

And for all those Twitter friends who have quietly followed along to my blog ramblings, put me on lists, commented on posts via twitter or RT’d. Thanks!

If you are on Twitter, and looking for some cool people to follow (many of whom also have blogs) here is the list of those individuals:

@shamelesshussy, @TheatreUBC, @getrealtheatre, @tjbuffoonery, @lekogirl, @A_Wonderland, @chriscasquilo, @CynnamonS, @shanebee, @krisjoseph, @DaveCharest @VancouverOpera, @atomicfez, @IanAMartin, @thedavidbeach, @hidtal, @Toronto_Fringe, @theArtsClub, @nicolemcluckie, @FilmguyWon, @jimgattone, @christinequinty, @seanminogue, @debbieshing, @vanmusicals, @foyee, @autoblot, @CarouselTheatre, @josiejose, @dloehr, @mightyjoanna, @PuShFestival, @clangmuir, @_AndreaWarner, @zacalfson, @kendavenport, @gayvancouver

Wow. That was just the biggest #FF (or #FollowFriday) ever.

I of course wanted to include as many people as possible but I’m sure I’ve forgotten some people along the way. So thanks to all the people who I may have failed to mention. If you read this blog or follow me on Twitter drop me a line or leave me a comment I’d love to hear from you in the future.

Many Thanks!

~Sabrina Evertt
Artistic Producer

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

What's In A Letter?

Last year when I first started this blog my second post was entitled “Show Me The Money”. And, here we are again. This is the time of year where I dig out the sponsorship letter that I created. Dust it off. Update and re-work the wording. And, get it ready to send.

But, what actually goes into the letter?

1. An Intro:

In your intro you need to tell them who you are and/or what your project is. Tell them what is exciting about your project. Any past successes. This shows them how being connected to you as a sponsor will benefit them in terms of public profile.

I can hear someone asking “But what if you haven’t had any past success? What if this is the first show you are producing?” My answer to that is everyone has done something they are proud of. All you need to do is make the connection between that accomplishment and what you are trying to accomplish now. Show these prospective sponsors that you are serious and they will take you seriously.

2. The Options:

The basics are for X amount of dollars we will provide you with X amount of ads, tickets, logo placement, etc. For example it may look like this:

Become a sponsor of Joe Schmoe’s production of “Money Makes the World Go ‘Round” for $$$ and receive the following:

- Logo placement on our flyers and posters
- Full-page advertising in our program
- Complimentary tickets to our opening night performance and reception

This is just an example. You can have a few options or tiers of options ie. silver, gold & platinum sponsors. It is up to you to decide the amount of money you ask for and what you are willing to offer in return.

3. A Closing:

This is where you say how the cheque they write you will be used. This shows a potential sponsor that you have spent the time necessary to make a budget and that you are financially smart. This reassures them that their sponsorship dollars will be spent well and not shoved into your back pocket while the set ends up being a bare stage. You don’t have to be uber specific but you can say it will go towards covering production costs (set, costumes, lighting, etc) or towards marketing/publicity, etc.

Then last, but certainly not least, you need to include a self-addressed, stamped envelope that will make it easy for them to write you that cheque and pop it in the mail. It is a small gesture but an important one.


~Sabrina Evertt
Artistic Producer

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Prodigals: A New Play

Coming up in April we’ve got our annual Spotlight production: Prodigals, a new play, by a local Vancouverite. After a successful public reading we’ve been quietly working behind the scenes getting the cast organized and solidified, bringing together a design and management team, and of course, getting the marketing and publicity for the show underway. On that note I give you the poster for Prodigals:



Set in a small bar in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, six young underachievers await the results of a murder trial that’s hit close to home. Their world of drinking, sarcasm and missed opportunities is flipped upside down when a former friend returns from Toronto to testify in the trial, reopening old wounds and creating some new ones as well.

Playing at Havana Theatre, 1212 Commercial Drive, April 27 – May 2, 2010 at 8pm

Tickets: $10 Preview, $15 Under 35 & Over 65, $20 Regular. Tickets are available through Tickets Tonight and at the door.

As we get closer to production, I’ll be posting more regularly about what’s happening behind the scenes, so stay tuned. And, most importantly, we hope to see you all out at the show in April.

~Sabrina Evertt
Artistic Producer