Celebrate emerging local theatre artists

Theatre groups around the region are joining forces this weekend to stage ACTivate – A Festival for Inspiring Theatre.

Opening with a series of workshops today (May 13), the inaugural event brings together local theatre companies and school drama departments with the aim of nurturing artistic development, furthering the education of emerging performers and showcasing the talent in Victoria’s theatre community.

“Together, these companies thought forming a new, free festival could both increase enthusiasm for Victoria theatre and help recruit the involvement of young people, in an area that desperately wants to make use of their talents,” festival organizer Erin Hoyt said in a release.

Participants are Langham Court Theatre, St. Luke’s Players, Target Theatre, Where’s Noonan? and Esquimalt and Victoria secondaries.

The workshops will culminate in two nights of adjudicated performances that are open and free to the public. High school students will also take on technical roles behind the scenes for the festival.

The free performances take place on Saturday and Sunday (May 14 and 15) at Langham Court Theatre, 805 Langham Ct. off Rockland Road, starting at 5 p.m. Audience members can come and go as they please.

The Saturday performances are as follows:

• Canterbury Cocktails – performed and directed by Julian Cervello (Scrumpy Productions)

The Anger of Ernest and Ernestine (selections) – performed and directed by David MacPherson and Melissa Blank (Where’s Noonan?)

• Death and Other Friends – written by Kathryn Taddei (Victoria High)

• Silver Linings – performed by Mitch and Jo Barnes, directed by Terry Roswell (St. Luke’s Players)

Sunday’s schedule:

•  Dot Con – written by Esme Gosling, directed by Judith McDowell (Target Theatre)

The Smell of the Kill (selections) – written by Michele Lowe, directed by Wendy Merk (Dragon Monkey Theatre)

• Sonnets for An Old Century (selections) – written by Jose Rivera, directed by Holly Jonson (Rapid Rocket Productions)

• Deliver Us Not – written by Lee Howard and Greg Gamble (Esquimalt High)

editor@oakbaynews.com