Bygone Theatre’s 2021/22 Season Announcement:
Toronto, ON (September 7, 2021) – Bygone Theatre plans a return to performance for our 9th season. Having taken a break from productions for a year due to the pandemic, we are now happy to announce the shows we have planned for 2022. Artistic Executive Director Emily Dix (Best Director, Broadway World Awards Toronto, 2019) is taking the helm in writing two original stories inspired by classic Hitchcock films, is set to direct a vintage radio podcast, and a show that will bring two of Canada’s greatest comedy legends back to the stage.
October sees the return of our popular Retro Radio Hour – this time in podcast form – sure to get you in the Halloween spirit. Our following shows currently in development are planned for 2022, and exact dates will be announced soon, as COVID protocols are put into place.
Canadian comedy legends WAYNE AND SHUSTER are being brought back to the stage, performed for the first time by a new generation in a collection of their classic skits. Bygone Theatre is honoured to have the chance to work with the duo’s descendants – Brian and Michael Wayne and Rosie Shuster – to bring these much-loved sketches back for a new generation of comedy lovers.
A new play inspired by the John Steinbeck short story that was the basis for the Alfred Hitchcock film of the same name, LIFEBOAT is a tension-filled WWII era drama. A civilian Allied ship is sunk in the middle of the ocean, and an unlikely group of strangers find themselves trapped together in a lifeboat, drifting aimlessly at sea. When a half-drowned man is pulled from the wreckage all seem eager to help – until it’s discovered he’s a German soldier. As the only man aboard qualified to navigate the ship, the survival of all involved seems to depend on him, but can the German be trusted, even if his life is one of those at stake? And as the days drag on and supplies dwindle, will he remain the only “enemy” on board?
In another twist on a Hitchcockian classic, THE BIRDS is a Cold-War Era thriller that examines what happens when the line between truth and propaganda becomes dangerously blurred. New York Socialite Daphne Daniels is headed to an old family cottage with her brother and husband for a weekend of R&R, but when her husband is unexpectedly delayed and their neighbours turn out to be Daphne’s old flame and his new girl, tensions run high. Things take a bizarre turn when reports of violent bird attacks start flooding the airwaves and the sudden crisis brings out everyone’s deepest fears and darkest convictions.
We’ve been busy behind-the-scenes through our 2020/21 hiatus: we have once again been accepted into the Business/Arts Artsvest mentorship program and look forward to their training and the opportunity to have matching sponsorship funding. This August, we were thrilled to be nominated for Best Live Theatre in the Toronto Star Readers’ Choice Awards, the results of which will be announced this fall. In September we will be launching our new education initiative, a series of workshops available for students grades 7-12: Careers In The Arts; The Audition Process; and Something From Nothing: How to Produce Your First Show. Through the generous support of writer/producer/story-teller Jane Aster Roe, Bygone will be expanding and improving our Youth Production Assistant program and adding a generous honourarium to the position.
On March 26, 2021, our partner the Youth Climate Report, led by Dr. Mark Terry, was honoured with a United Nations SDG Action Award, and we were fortunate enough to have the opportunity to showcase a short video outlining our commitment to the UN Sustainable Development Goals at the award ceremony. We continued to develop our Sustainability Mandate and announced the three core branches of that program: Mend and Make Do; Vintage Aesthetic (Not Vintage Values); and Indie Unite. These initiatives will be the basis of this year’s web programming. We also implemented a new Diversity and Accessibility Mandate which will shape all our work going forward. Finally, we are currently raising funds to support the launch of a large-scale theatre sustainability survey that we hope will help encourage better sustainability processes not only in Toronto, but the entire theatre community.