With the warm summer nights and lockdowns continuing for many live performance venues, Halifax comedy improv troupe Hello City is moving outside.
Usually occupied by Shakespeare by the Sea during the summer months, before the theatre company was sidelined due to the pandemic, Point Pleasant Park’s Cambridge Battery will be the temporary home for the troupe for two shows in August.
“Traditional theatre isn’t ready to return just yet; there are too many moving parts. The improv community is really set up to take that challenge on. When our favourite Halifax improv group approached us about using our usual summer home in the Cambridge Battery, we were determined to make it happen,” says Shakespeare by the Sea’s artistic associate Drew Douris-O’Hara.
Complying with provincial public health guidelines for outdoor gatherings during the pandemic, precautions include staggered entrance times, hand sanitizer stations, and audiences will be required to wear a mask, although masks will be available for those who are not able to bring their own. Personal information will also be collected for contact tracing. Organizers also advise that due to COVID-19 restrictions, there will be no porta-potties on-site, no food for sale and no golf cart access.
“We’re thrilled to get back to performing while knowing we can make it a safe event for our community to attend,” says Hello City member Stepheny Hunter. “All of us in Hello City know how cathartic a good comedy show can be, so we’re excited to be able to bring that to the city once again. Plus being outdoors in the beautiful Point Pleasant Park? What’s not to love?”
Hello City has announced Halifax actor Kat McCormack as its special guest on August 8. The Merritt Award-nominated actor will tell stories from her life in Halifax, which the improvisers will use to inspire their scenes that night.
Before the pandemic hit, the award-winning Hello City was making Halifax audiences laugh with its monthly show at the Bus Stop Theatre. Featuring a Haligonian who tells stories about their life in Halifax, the improvisers use those stories as inspiration for the show, making everything up on the spot.
Hello City by The Sea takes place on August 8 and 22 at Cambridge Battery in Point Pleasant Park. Advance tickets are now available at Ticket Halifax.