Thursday, September 29, 2022

Stages Theatre Festival returns to its Dartmouth roots

The festival of works at all stages of development from artists at all stages of their careers takes place at the Alderney Landing Theatre from June 7-12.

Now in its 29th year, Eastern Front Theatre’s (EFT) annual Stages Theatre Festival is returning to its Dartmouth roots at Alderney Landing Theatre from June 7 to June 12.

The resident theatre company at Alderney Landing from 1999 to 2009, EFT relocated to Halifax in 2009, where it took up residency at Neptune Theatre’s Scotiabank Stage for ten years. Returning to Alderney Landing in 2021, this year’s Stages Theatre Festival marks the first in-person festival since moving back to Dartmouth.

“This year’s festival will feature new work that pushes the boundaries of what theatre can be, including pieces that mix heavily with circus, drag, standup, music, installation art, and even mind-reading.”

An adjunct to the company’s Early Stages Festival, which features workshops, play readings, and the development of new ideas, the 2022 Stages Theatre Festival will focus on finished productions and works-in-progress showings. In splitting the festival, artistic director Kat McCormack hopes audiences will be more prepared for what they’re about to see.

“The fun of Stages has always been taking the risk of seeing something unfinished, whereas this year’s festival is full of new work that is ready for an audience,” says McCormack. “Early Stages in February will be for the more adventurous theatre-goers looking to catch work that’s fresh from the creation process and maybe a little rough around the edges.”

Highlights this year include No Heroes Anymore from Halifax’s 2b theatre company, in which a storyteller revisits epic Persian tales that his mother used to tell, seeking wisdom and guidance in a modern journey of life and death.

In the new comedy from The Villains Theatre’s artistic director Dan Bray, Shakespeare’s Time Machine follows the immortal bard as he struggles to understand his place in a
post-plague world.

In Dangerous Lies, award-winning performer and mind-reader Tabraze Sheikh takes
the audience on an intimate and interactive journey of discovering his place in the world while facing the dangerous lies society thrust upon him.

Stages is offering an entire series for families and younger audiences, including the long-awaited world premiere of the digital thriller #IAmTheCheese from Dartmouth playwright Josh MacDonald and a super soaker-filled outdoor retelling of Cyrano de Bergerac from Toronto’s Lakeside Players.

Eastern Front Theatre presents the 2022 Stages Theatre Festival at the Alderney Landing Theatre (2 Ochterloney St, Dartmouth) June 7-12. Visit easternfronttheatre.com for tickets and information.

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