Category Archives: News Flash

Confederation Players Hit the Road

The Confederation Players are headed to the nation’s capital for the 150th anniversary of Canadian Confederation.

Confederation Centre of the Arts is very pleased to announce a major sponsorship for the youth theatre program, which commemorates the 1864 Charlottetown Conference and the origins of the nation. CN will sponsor the troupe for the next two seasons, ensuring the continued growth of Confederation Centre’s heritage programming in the lead up to the sesquicentennial of Canada’s birth in 2017. As part of this $225,000 sponsorship, the Players will also appear in Ottawa in 2017 for a special event.

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“On behalf of the board of directors and all staff at Confederation Centre, I would like to congratulate CN on this major sponsorship,” says Jessie Inman, CEO of Confederation Centre. “In the late 19th century, the Canadian railway bound our great country together from sea to shining sea and made us one people. As we approach the 150th anniversary of Confederation, I cannot envision a more perfect partner to aid us in sharing our nation’s stories and commemorating the dreams of our founders.”

The sponsorship will assist the Players program with professional costuming, travel, and labour associated with the 2017 celebratory programming, and will ensure the stable growth and authenticity of this long-valued experiential tourism product.

“As we head into July 1st celebrations, CN and Confederation Centre take great pride in celebrating the 150th anniversary of Canada’s birth and building for the future of our communities,” says Sean Finn, Chief Legal Officer and Executive Vice President – Corporate Services CN. “We believe that tourism and heritage programs like the Confederation Players create an exciting opportunity to commemorate our nation’s shared history, and we look forward to working together in 2016 and 2017.”

First founded in 1989, the Confederation Players Program operates six months a year at Confederation Centre and is made up of college-age men and women from across Eastern Canada. Through walking tours, vignettes, Victorian song, and colourful street encounters, the troupe brings to life the landmark events of the 1860’s in British North America and such personalities as John A. Macdonald, George-Étienne Cartier, Thomas D’Arcy McGee, Miss Mercy Coles, and many others. The Players undertake an intensive training program studying regional, national, and Island history, public speaking, improvisation, and performance.

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Leg Warmers, Big Hair, and Caddyshack at the Harbourfront

Harbourfront Theatre is once again offering a summer film series for 2016. Totally ‘80s Movie Mondays, running July 4 through August 29, will feature some of the most beloved and iconic popular motion pictures from the age of leg warmers, big hair and Space Invaders, and pay tribute to recently departed legendary artists of the era, Prince and David Bowie. Family Flix will follow the same ‘80s theme with one young audience film on a Wednesday in each of July and August.

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FERRIS BUELLER’S DAY OFF | JULY 4, 7:30PM
Movie Rating PG-13, 1 hour 43 Minutes
One fake sick day sends high school senior Ferris Bueller, his girlfriend Sloane and his best friend Cameron on the adventure of their young lives, as they ditch school and take off on a raucous journey through Chicago as they stay one step ahead of their principal and Ferris’s sister.

PURPLE RAIN | JULY 11, 7:30PM
Movie Rating R, 1 hour 51 Minutes
A young man with a talent for music has begun a career with much promise. He meets an aspiring singer, Apollonia, and finds that talent alone isn’t all that he needs. A complicated tale of his repeating his father’s self-destructive behavior, losing Apollonia to another singer (Morris Day), and his coming to grips with his own connection to other people ensues.

WEEKEND AT BERNIE’S | JULY 18, 7:30PM
Movie Rating PG-13, 1 hour 37 Minutes
Two young men are trying to make their way in a corporation. One on charm, the other on hard work. When they go to the president (Bernie) with a serious financial error on a printout, he pretends to be thrilled and invites them to his beach house for the weekend. He actually plans on having them killed. Bernie is also fooling around with the girlfriend of his mafia partner. When the partner has Bernie killed, the boys end up having to pretend Bernie is still alive as the frustrated hit man tries time and time again to complete the job.

CADDYSHACK 36th Anniversary Screening | JULY 25, 7:30PM
Movie Rating R, 1 hour 38 Minutes
Comical goings on at an exclusive golf club. All the members are wealthy and eccentric, and all the staff are poor and slightly less eccentric. The main character is ‘Danny’; he’s a caddy who will do almost anything to raise money to go to college. There are many subplots, including the assistant green keeper’s pursuit of a cute (obviously stuffed) gopher.

FIELD OF DREAMS | AUGUST 1, 7:30PM
Movie Rating PG, 1 hour 47 Minutes
Iowa farmer Ray Kinsella hears a voice in his corn field tell him, “If you build it, he will come.” He interprets this message as an instruction to build a baseball field on his farm, upon which appear the ghosts of Shoeless Joe Jackson and the other seven Chicago White Sox players banned from the game for throwing the 1919 World Series. When the voices continue, Ray seeks out a reclusive author to help him understand the meaning of the messages and the purpose for his field.

STAND BY ME 30th Anniversary Screening | AUGUST 8, 7:30PM
Movie Rating R, 1 hour 29 Minutes
It’s the summer of 1959 in Castlerock, Oregon and four 12 year-old boys – Gordie, Chris, Teddy and Vern – are fast friends. After learning of the general location of the body of a local boy who has been missing for several days, they set off into woods to see it. Along the way, they learn about themselves, the meaning of friendship and the need to stand up for what is right.

THE BLUES BROTHERS | AUGUST 15, 7:30PM
Movie Rating R, 2 hour 13 Minutes
After the release of Jake Blues from prison, he and brother Elwood go to visit “The Penguin”, the last of the nuns who raised them in a boarding school. They learn the Archdiocese will stop supporting the school and will sell the place to the Education Authority. The only way to keep the place open is if the $5000 tax on the property is paid within 11 days. The Blues Brothers want to help, and decide to put their blues band back together and raise the the money by staging a big gig. As they set off on their “mission from God” they seem to make more enemies along the way. Will they manage to come up with the money in time?

LABYRINTH | AUGUST 22, 7:30PM
Movie Rating PG, 1 hour 41 Minutes
Young Sarah is left home alone by her parents and she has to babysit her little brother Toby. But the baby keeps crying and Sarah, while telling him a story to make him sleep, inadvertently conjures from a fantasy world the Goblin King who steals the child and brings him to his castle in the middle of a labyrinth. Sarah has to rescue him before midnight, or the baby will become a goblin.

THE BREAKFAST CLUB | AUGUST 29, 7:30PM
Movie Rating R, 1 hour 37 Minutes
Five high school students, all different stereotypes, meet in detention, where they pour their hearts out to each other, and discover how they have a lot more in common than they thought.

Everything’s Got a Story (and an app)

The Story of Confederation Kiosk

Location: beside the 1864 sculpture on the historic grounds surrounding Province House National Historic Site.

Hours of Operation: July and August: 9 a.m. –5 p.m. Monday to Saturday; 12 p.m.–5 p.m. Sunday (weather depending).

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Cost: Free of charge

The kiosk will offer the following services:

Information on Confederation Centre of the Arts, the Confederation Players, the Confederation Centre Young Company, Province House National Historic Site and other Parks Canada heritage places on PEI.

Wifi access to the official Parks Canada Province House app. The app is available for free download to your handheld device or with the use of an iPad, which will be available for loan.

Parks Canada’s Green Screen, which allows visitors to have their image superimposed on a stunning Parks Canada backdrop image (weather depending).

Visitors are also welcome to learn more about this iconic site through interpretive panels that have been installed on the grounds of Province House.

Luke Ignace is 1st Recipient of Erskine Smith Award

Luke Ignace is the inaugural recipient of the Erskine Smith Memorial Award for the Performing Arts at Holland College.

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Despite clearly possessing a talent for theatre, Luke had never considered a career in the performing arts before age fifteen. He was a member of a dance troupe in his native Bahamas, but his plan for post-secondary education was to study marine engineering at The Bahamas Technical and Vocational Institute. Those plans were forever changed when he was spotted dancing by Gloria McGlone, the woman who would become his mentor and benefactor. Ms. McGlone encouraged him to audition for a production of Fame at the Regency Theatre in Freeport. He did and was cast in the role of Tyrone.

Over the next three years, Luke performed parts in several Bahamian plays, as well as the playing Scar in The Lion King.

Eager to develop his talents, Luke applied to the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York City for a five-week intensive summer course. Shortly thereafter, he applied and was accepted to Holland College’s School of Performing Arts.

International living and student expenses can be daunting and Luke is very grateful to all those who made gifts in support of the Erskine Smith Memorial Award which has helped to make it possible for him to pursue his career in theatre.

Luke’s future plans may include further study of the dramatic arts at the National Theatre School in Montreal. He recently auditioned for a place there. But wherever he ends up next year, he ultimately wants to build on his education and experience before returning to the Bahamas with a view to making a significant contribution to the performing arts in his native country.

Photo Show Opens at the Guild

The PEI Photo Club has undergone several incarnations. The first Camera Club, organized by Roland Taylor in 1937, was short-lived. With the help of Vic Runtz, Roland organized the Charlottetown Camera Club after the end of World War II and supported it for many years. The club currently presents an annual Roland Taylor Award in his honour. The club saw a new birth in 1982 as the Monday Night Club, but the name didn’t stick so the group called itself the PEI Photo Club.

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Richard Carson writes: “The ‘pros’ like Carmen Paynter of the PEI Photo Lab, Rollie Taylor of Taylor’s Jewellers who sold Minoltas, and George Wotton were a great help to the members in the early years of the new club.”

Over the years, the Club has benefited from the membership of a Who’s-Who of Island business owners, teachers and commercial photographers, and today it is proud of the diversity of its members ranging from high school students to retirees, from those using point-and-shoot cameras to those who have invested in professional gear.

The 34th Annual PEI Photo Club Print Show opens at the Guild on June 8th. The photo club is grateful to all of the sponsors and volunteers who make this show possible.

Antonine Maillet Awarded Symons Medal

Renowned Acadian novelist, playwright, broadcaster, and scholar, Antonine Maillet, C.C. is the winner of the 2016 Symons Medal, one of Canada’s most prestigious honours, Confederation Centre of the Arts announced today

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Confederation Centre – Canada’s national memorial to the founding of the country – presents the Symons Medal each year to recognize a distinguished person who has made an exceptional contribution to Canadian life. Previous recipients of this award include His Royal Highness Prince Charles, Prince of Wales; His Excellency Governor General David Johnston; former Prime Minister Paul Martin; President of the national Inuit organization, Mary Simon; broadcaster and environmental leader, David Suzuki; and former Quebec Premier, Jean Charest.

Born in 1929 in Bouctouche, New Brunswick, Maillet is one of the most celebrated writers in Canadian literature. Her play La Sagouine (1971), which celebrates the rich, colourful, and distinctive culture of Canada’s Acadian people, has become a classic of French-language theatre in this country. Her 1979 novel Pélagie-la-Charette was the first work by a non-European to win the Prix Goncourt, France’s greatest literary prize. This story charts the triumphant return home of the Acadian people after the 1755 Expulsion, and made Maillet an overnight success in France, where it sold over a million copies.

Since the breakthroughs of La Sagouine and Pélagie-la-Charette, Maillet has been one of the most respected figures in French-language literature in Canada, publishing over 20 novels, numerous plays, and several translations (including French translations of Shakespeare, Ben Jonson, and Bernard Shaw). Her remarkable body of writing, translated into numerous languages, is an immense contribution to literature in Canada and throughout the world, and makes her an unofficial but much-beloved, world-wide ambassador for the Acadian people.

In 1999, composer and lyricist Vincent de Tourdonnet brought Maillet’s Pélagie to Confederation Centre where the developing musical was workshopped. Pélagie-la-Charette became a successful musical produced in both French and English that toured several venues in Canada.

“On behalf of the Board of Directors, CEO Jessie Inman, and Professor Tom Symons, for whom this lecture is named, we are elated to announce Antonine Maillet as the recipient of the 16th Symons Medal,” says Chairman of the Fathers of Confederation Buildings Trust, Wayne Hambly. “Mme Maillet is a leading creative voice for Canada, a writer of great renown, and a global champion for Acadians everywhere. We welcome her return to Confederation Centre this fall.”

Maillet is a Companion of the Order of Canada, an Officer of the French Légion d’Honneur, a Commandeur des Arts et des Lettres de France, a member of the Order of New Brunswick, and an Officer of the Order of Quebec. She has received over 20 literary awards and prizes, including the Governor General’s Award for Literature, and the Lorne Pierce Medal from the Royal Society of Canada. In 1992, she was appointed a member of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada. From 1989 to 2001 she served as Chancellor of the Université de Moncton.

Maillet’s Symons Medal Ceremony will take place on Friday, November 4, 2016 in the Homburg Theatre. Tickets to attend the recipient’s medal ceremony and lecture will be made available through the Centre’s Box Office at a later date. For more information, please visit confederationcentre.com/symonsmedallecture and follow event updates on social media @confedcentre and via #Symons2016.

Since 2004, Confederation Centre has honoured 15 distinguished Symons Medalists. Held each fall to mark the 1864 meetings of the Fathers of Confederation, the medal ceremony creates a national platform for a prominent Canadian to discuss the nation’s current state and future prospects.

Don’t Forget to Give!

The Great Canadian Giving Challenge is here! For the entire month of June, every $1 you donate to us at the Watermark Theatre through http://www.canadahelps.org qualifies us to win $10,000! The more you give, the more chances for us to win!

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Our summer season is fast approaching with Blithe Spirit and The Glass Menagerie about to start rehearsals. Our sets are being built, costumes are being made, and the theatre is being prepped to welcome local residents and visitors to the theatre for this very exciting 2016 summer season.

If you haven’t yet donated this season, now is the perfect time! If you’ve already made a contribution recently, we are so grateful for your support.

Watermark Theatre is a not for profit charitable organization and a charitable tax receipt will be issued with all donations.

Help us make the 2016 summer season our best ever!