We are now a month away from the preview performance of our next production, The Yellow Wallpaper. This show is a marked departure from our usual work – it is taking place in Campbell House Museum and is utilizing technology to tell a story of isolation and powerlessness. As we piece together this immersive production we are researching mental health, and in particular, how the isolation of COVID-19 has affected those who were already suffering from mental illness, and how it led to an increase in mental health problems for those who had not experienced them previously. We are also experimenting with technology in ways we have not before, thanks to the Canada Council for the Arts Digital Now Grant, and so this whole process is a big learning experience for us all.
Over the next few weeks, we will be posting a series of “diaries” that chronicle the creation process and provide insight, resources and context to our work. If there is something you would like to know more about, please let us know in the comments.
Bygone Theatre was founded as a collective in October of 2012, and became an incorporated not-for-profit company in October of 2015. Our mandate is to produce theatre written or set in the early 20th century, focusing on historical aspects in design and incorporating a classic cinema aesthetic.
In 2019 Bygone Theatre was nominated for 14 Broadway World Toronto Awards, including Best Community Theatre and Best Play (Equity). We took home a total of 5 awards, 4 of which were for The Rear Window, including Best Direction of a Play (Equity); Best Original Lighting Design; Best Leading Actor (Play, Equity); and Best Featured Actress (Play, Equity). We took a hiatus our 2020/21 season because of the COVID19 pandemic, and used that time to develop our charitable initiatives. In August of 2021 we were nominated for the Toronto Star Readers' Choice Award for Best Live Theatre.
Part of our mission involves inclusion and accessibility, and we strive to allow artists of all backgrounds and levels of experience the chance to have hands-on experience in whatever capacity they are most interested in; this has included youth outreach programs for high school students interested in production design, and acting opportunities for those who have never performed onstage.
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