Lights, [web] camera, action!

 

Thank you to Age Friendly Edmonton for including us in their May Newsletter! Our Associate Director, Becca, had a wonderful time chatting with Linette Smith for the Shared Mic Podcast discussing Virtual Theatre. It was wonderful to sit down with Age Friendly Edmonton to share how our virtual programs have continued to evolve a year later.

  • Read Age Friendly Edmonton’s May Newsletter here
  • Listen to Episode 6 of the Shared Mic Podcast here

Lights, [web] camera, action! The show goes on for local performers traversing the digital landscape

In sharing stories of adaptation, perseverance, and resourcefulness during this pandemic, there is no shortage of examples. A local theatrical partnership exemplifies all three, and in doing so, is providing audiences and actors alike with a whole new immersive experience.

Becca and Linette first sat down with Age Friendly Edmonton (AFE) for a virtual conversation last year. Linette Smith, Department Head of Fine and Performing Arts at Strathcona High School, and Becca Barrington, Associate Director of the GeriActors, exchanged thoughts about virtual theatre in season two, episode six of the AFE ‘Shared Mic’ podcast.

Through trial and error, both women pushed the limits of Zoom’s capabilities to bring captivating live theatre to their audiences. Prior to September, the GeriActors had been experimenting with performing existing material on Zoom. They soon discovered the online medium added a layer of spontaneity to their performances. Theatre games and new ways of storytelling resulted in the creation of four new stories. With the assistance of a dedicated student team, these stories were recorded and transcribed by hand.

“The GeriActors shared photos from their lives, their family members who are referenced in the stories, we found images on the internet, we had music that we had come up in the slides, and then they performed live,” says Becca. “We just had such a good time. So, we’re continuing with those stories.”

The stories will be featured in the upcoming spring showcase, Way Back, a new audio play. The play features a kaleidoscope of unique, true stories – living through WWII, farm life in Alberta and Sri Lanka, birth and motherhood, growing up in Trinidad, and more. Live performances will air May 18, 20, and 29 – tickets are available by donation online.

As for Linette, she’s been busy instructing students online – and they’ve taken to the medium quite readily, having performed live improv as part of the Wildfire Festival with Rapid Fire Theatre! Under her tutelage, her students have also completed a virtual theatre showcase for friends and family members. Linette’s Lunchtime Improv Jams have also taken off, proving a popular activity for both students and their families!

“A mom came in and did improv with us during the lunch hour, which was really fantastic and joyous,” says Linette. “And the daughter is so comfortable with her improv because her mom is starting to learn along with her.”

Learning from community has been an effective tool for both Linette and Becca in driving new ideas for digital performances. For example, the GeriActors have been exploring the idea of radio plays – an audio-only performance style that enjoyed widespread popularity in the mid-1900s. Many members of the GeriActors remember these shows fondly. Following their initial conversation in The Shared Mic, Linette introduced the concept to her fellow teachers.

“When you [Becca] talked about radio plays when we first met, I was like, ‘that is such a good idea’. And so teachers all across the province are now doing radio plays,” says Linette. “So, researching the old radio plays – and the ones with the crazy ads – it’s just super fun to listen to that. And dramatic, too, like, ‘oh my gosh, they’re selling coffee in the middle of this murder mystery? What is going on?’”

Members of the GeriActors ensemble and Strathcona High School students may be generations apart, but both have adapted to the new online medium following Becca and Linette’s guidance. We can’t wait to see what comes next for these intrepid performers!

Rising Sun Theatre presents Threads

Rising Sun Theatre presents Threads

Rooted in visual art, Threads weaves together ideas, scenes and movement pieces inspired by the works of artists from the Nina Haggerty Centre for the Arts. For over 16 years, Rising Sun Theatre has been producing original theatre performances inspired by the lives, imaginations and stories of our actors. More information about their company at: www.risingsuntheatre.ca

Join them from the comfort of your home for their first ever virtual show!

Date: Monday, May 31

Time: 7:30– 9:00pm MDT

Admission: pay-what-you-can (any amount is greatly appreciated)

Register through eventbrite: www.risingsun.eventbrite.com

The Accidental Drama Club goes virtual

SEESA’s Accidental Drama Club presents Getting Old Ain’t for Sissies!

Watch the Accidental Drama Club’s 2021 Variety Show on SEESA’s YouTube channel during Senior’s Week from June 7 to 12.

Showtimes:

  • Monday (7th) to Thursday (10th) evenings at 7:00pm
  • Tuesday (8th), Thursday (10th) and Saturday (12th) matinee at 2:00pm

Tickets are now on sale at through eventbrite: www.eventbrite.ca/d/online/seesa/

The cost is $10/ticket plus a $1.25 booking fee. Buy a ticket to the show!

The Accidental Drama Club would especially like to thank Gerry Jenkins for sharing his expertise in the recording of this production.

We are Hiring!

Job Posting – Tour Manager / Stage Manager

  • Application Deadline: June 1, 2021
  • Start Date: June 21, 2021
  • End date: November 30, 2021
  • Wage:  $25.00 per hour
  • Location: Edmonton, Alberta
  • Job Type: Part-time (12 hours weekly)

About GeriActors:

GeriActors Theatre is an Edmonton based not-for-profit company. Our mission is to engage seniors and intergenerational groups in theatre and performance-related activities, and to produce theatre of meaning for our performers and audiences. Our performance company, GeriActors & Friends, is unique in uniting seniors and younger generations through performer-created play development. Members range in age from early twenties to nineties. Using a playful approach to theatre and emphasizing social interaction, we produce original plays based on our stories and issues of aging. We give 10-15 performances a year to seniors and their families, students, health professionals, caregivers, and the general public.

About the Position:

GeriActors is hiring a Tour Manager / Stage Manager who has an interest in community-based theatre, and working with seniors.

Under the supervision of the Associate Director and General Manager, this position will coordinate in-person and virtual performances, including the GeriActors & Friends fall performance tour (October to November 2021), and help promote our new audio plays program. This position will also provide stage management for the GeriActors & Friends in rehearsals starting September 2021, and assist with various administrative tasks.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Coordinate in-person and virtual performances, including the GeriActors & Friends fall performance tour (October to November 2021)
  • Develop a database of seniors-serving and intergenerational organizations throughout Canada
  • Assist with communications and marketing, and reach out to organizations to promote the show and book performances
  • Maintain correspondence with interested organizations, collect performance contracts, invoices and payments
  • Develop and distribute rehearsal and performance schedules to performers
  • Take rehearsal and script notes, manage props and costumes, and provide on-site support during rehearsals and performances (both in-person and virtual)
  • Assist with various administrative work, as needed

Qualifications:

  • Ideal for candidates with experience and/or training in: Arts and Cultural Management, Theatre Production, Theatre Arts, or Event Management
  • Experience in the not-for-profit sector is considered an asset
  • Experience working with seniors considered an asset
  • Experience in marketing and social media considered an asset
  • Strong organizational and time management skills
  • Self-directed with the ability to take initiative
  • Strong interpersonal skills and articulate with verbal & written communications
  • Demonstrated attention to detail with the ability to manage competing priorities
  • This position allows for a flexible work schedule, however, the successful candidate must be available to attend rehearsals on Tuesday and Thursday from 1:15 – 3:45pm from September to November.

This position is funded through the Canada Summer Jobs Program. Applicants must be between the ages of 15-30 and legally entitled to work in Canada.

GeriActors committed to inclusive hiring. We encourage applications from candidates who self-identify as members of under-represented communities. We are committed to providing accessible employment practices. If you require accommodations during any stage of the recruitment process, or if you have any questions about the position, please let us know.

Please submit a cover letter and resume in PDF format to Becca Barrington at geriactors.friends@gmail.com by June 1, 2021.

Download the PDF: Tour Manager Job Posting

We thank all interested applicants; however, we will only be contacting those selected for an interview.

Join our Board of Directors

 

GeriActors Theatre is an intergenerational theatre company. Our performance company, the GeriActors & Friends, ranges in age from early twenties to early nineties. We are unique in uniting seniors and younger generations through performer-created play development. Using a playful approach to theatre and emphasizing social interaction, we produce original plays based on our stories and issues of aging and perform to seniors and their families, students, health professionals, caregivers, and the general public. Our outreach programs include: workshops in storytelling and acting, JP Drama (in collaboration with Jasper Place High School), the Festival of Edmonton Seniors Theatre, and Facilitator Training.

Join our Board of Directors (volunteer)

GeriActors is seeking members of the community to join its Board of Directors. Board members will support GeriActors in executing its mission to engage seniors and intergenerational groups in theatre and performance-related activities, and to produce plays that are meaningful for its performers and audiences. GeriActors believes seniors’ engagement in the arts at a level of comparative mastery leads to significant health benefits, an overall sense of well-being and a marked increase in social and civic engagement.

We are seeking candidates with a strong interest in theatrical arts, community arts, and/or the seniors sector. Knowledge and skills in accounting, fundraising and development, legal, and marketing are an asset. We are recruiting board members for a two-year term. The board of directors meets four times per year.

A GeriActors Board Member:

  • Regularly attends board meetings and the Annual General Meeting.
  • Stays informed about board matters, prepares for meetings, and reviews and comments on minutes and reports.
  • Participates actively in the board’s deliberations and decisions in the matters of policy, finance, and programming.
  • Participates in strategic planning, fundraising, outreach and audience development.
  • Protects assets and provides proper financial oversight.
  • Ensures legal, fiduciary, and ethical integrity.
  • Upholds our mission, vision, goals and objectives, and champions the theatre company within the community.

Please send a statement of interest (max. one page) to geriactors.friends@gmail.com. Open until filled.

Potential applicants are invited to contact us in advance of submitting their applications if they have any questions regarding GeriActors and/or board member requirements and duties.

Download our call for new board members as a PDF: GeriActors call for new board members