2009 Theatre Subscription Series – Factory Theatre

By Megan Mooney

Next in the subscription series profiles is Factory Theatre.

This season happens to be their 40th, so, happy birthday Factory Theatre!  Here are the specifics on their subscription series and 2009-10 season:

As with many other theatres, Factory Theatre offers a range of options on their subscription series, including a special discount for returning subscribers, which is pretty cool, and an incentive to subscribe this year, so you’ll qualify for the discount next year.  For new subscriptions, prices for a 5 play subscription ranges from $55 – $140 depending on when you want to go to the show, and a 3-play subscription is $89 (same price no matter what night you go).  They also have special pricing for Seniors, Students and Arts workers (I’ll refer this to SSAs in the details).  So, the prices are:

5-play subscription:

– Anytime pass: $140 (SSAs $115)

– Weekday pass: $105 (SSAs $85)

– Preview pass: $55

3-play subscription:

– Anytime pass – $89

Information on the 2009-10 season pulled from the press release:

True Love Lies – October 1 – November 1, previews start on September 26

Written and directed by Brad Fraser

True Love Lies is a powerful modern comedy of life’s journey – witty, fast-paced and explicit – and has received much media attention in the UK. This will be the North American Premiere of the play and will showcase one of Canada’s best known playwrights. Originally from Edmonton, Alberta, Brad has been writing since the age of 17 and his plays have been seen world-wide and translated into multiple languages. The play was originally developed at Factory Theatre in a workshop in May 2008.

The Madonna Painter – November 19 to December 13, previews start on November 14

by Michel Marc Bouchard, translated by Linda Gaboriau | Directed by Eda Holmes

Montreal’s Bouchard, originally from the northern Quebec village Saint-Coeur de Marie, has written more than 25 plays which have all been staged. His works, translated into many languages, are regularly performed around the world, notably in Japan and Italy. In The Madonna Painter, it is the end of World War I and, in order to protect his parish from the Spanish flu epidemic, a Quebecois village priest commissions a wandering Italian painter to create a fresco dedicated to the Virgin Mary. The arrival of the foreign artist, his search for a local beauty to serve as a model for the Madonna, and the process of his work will upset the lives and change the fate of the entire village.

And So It Goes – February 4 to 28, previews start on January 30

Written and directed by George F. Walker

Among many awards, including the Order of Canada, Walker is receiving the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award in May 2009. Factory Theatre has premiered well over 20 of his 30 plays, and remounted another five that premiered elsewhere. His last play,
Heaven, was produced at Canadian Stage in 2000 to great acclaim. Since then, Walker has focused on television as the writer and creator of This is Wonderland on CBC TV, The Line on the Movie Network as well as the feature film Niagara Motel. In And So It Goes, a husband and wife are struggling to deal with their identity, their home, their passions and their marriage, despite job loss, a mentally ill daughter’s demise, and an unorthodox

who knew grannie: a dub aria – March 18 to April 4, previews start March 1

by ahdri zhina mandiela | produced by Obsidian Theatre in association with Factory Theatre

who knew grannie: a dub aria is about four cousins who reunite for the burial of their matriarch. They go back to Jamaica and reclaim their past and discover who they are through childhood games, songs and powerful memories. On the wings of the symbolic sankofa bird, the cousins go on a powerful cathartic journey full of joy, laughter and pain to the music of the heart and the drums of their homeland. mandiela, who is also an award-winning director and performer, has a unique muscular poetic voice that drives this imaginative theatrical dub aria. 

Featuring Loretta – May 6 to June 6, previews start May 1

by George F. Walker .

Presented originally in Factory’s 1997-98 season as part of Walker’s Suburban Motel cycle, Featuring Loretta is a irreverent comedic snapshot of four ‘20-somethings’ and their complex interpersonal relationships. This is a world of off-kilter characters in desperate situations. Set in a seedy motel room, the story follows stunningly beautiful Loretta,
recently widowed when her husband is eaten by a bear. Now pregnant by her cheating dead husband’s  best friend, Loretta’s relationships with Dave, her uptight “wanna-be” boyfriend, and Michael, a booker for topless bars who wants to make a series of “erotic videos” starring Loretta, and Sophie, the physicist daughter of the motel’s ex-KGB Russian owner with strong opinions of her own, results in vintage Walker comedic mayhem.

Some things that may (or may not) influence your decision:

– Factory Theatre is very accessible by car and transit.

– Sit-down dinner options close-by are sort of limited, a couple pubs and, I think, an Indian place.

– There’s a lovely courtyard-type patio that is really nice to hang out with your friends before and after a show.  In the winter, there is also a lovely bar area that is very welcoming.

– You can expect excellent theatre in a reasonably casual setting, but be prepared for stuff that might play around with your expectations of theatre.