When Studio 58, the nationally renowned theatre training program at Langara College announced the lineup for its 2021-2022 season, the news was met with excitement from both students and audiences craving a return to live theatre. With the start of in-person classes at Langara earlier this month, tickets are now on sale for Studio 58’s four large-scale productions, to be presented in the cherished black box theatre.
“We have persevered through so much this past year and a half, and now it is time to shed the doldrums and find the light,” says artistic director Courtenay Dobbie. “With Studio 58’s upcoming season, we are thrilled to begin the work of… well… beginning again. All four productions capture a spirit of rebirth, of reckoning, of celebrating humanity. With these events, let us feel again, be together again, and run wildly into a reawakening of the soul.”
The season begins on Oct. 9 with Cerulean Blue, which tells the story of a struggling blues band invited to play at a benefit concert in a remote First Nation community in conflict with the local authorities. Chaos ensues as the band arrives to discover that all the other acts have cancelled. Written by award-winning Ojibway playwright Drew Hayden Taylor, with original composition by Wayne Lavallee, this tongue-in-cheek comedy smashes stereotypes and celebrates connection through music. Cerulean Blue is directed by recent Studio 58 graduates Kelsey Kanatan Wavey and Cameron Peal.
Next is Everybody, a Pulitzer Prize finalist by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins directed by Kim Collier and onstage starting Nov. 25. In this modern take on the 15th-century morality play Everyman, the character of “Everybody” has been summoned by “Death” to account for their life. In this irreverent and poetic exploration of life and death, Everybody asks us to consider what it means to be human.
With the new year comes a fun and freaky escape we’ve all been yearning for — The Rocky Horror Show, written by Richard O’Brien and directed by Josh Epstein (director of Studio 58’s smash-hit production of Cabaret). A flat tire in the middle of a thunderstorm forces squeaky-clean sweethearts Brad and Janet to seek shelter at the castle of the scandalous Dr. Frank ’N’ Furter. Jam-packed with irresistible hits like “Touch-A-Touch-A-Touch Me,” “Damn It, Janet,” and the pelvic-thrusting “Time Warp,” this cult classic is a non-stop celebration! The Rocky Horror Show will be onstage Feb. 3 to 20.
Closing out the season is Six of One: New Play Festival featuring fresh one-acts written by students. Studio 58 also presents Risky Nights, a devised series helmed by professional directors now in its 21st season. The first instalment, an exploration of a social group from the 1920s called the “bright young things,” and directed by Ming Hudson, will run Oct. 13 to 17.
Following guidelines outlined by the provincial health office and Langara College, Studio 58 will be limiting audience capacity to 50 for mainstage shows. Proof of vaccination will be required to attend, and masks are mandatory in all spaces on Langara College’s campus.
Tickets and further information on the 2021-22 Studio 58 season can be found on their website here.
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