Press Release - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Windsor’s Local Theatre Company takes on the fantastical wonders of Dr. Seuss in Seussical the Musical

Press Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Windsor’s Local Theatre Company takes on the fantasical wonders of Dr. Seuss in Seussical The Musical.

Windsor, NS (May 10, 2018) - Quick As A Wink Theatre Society proudly presents Seussical The Musical by Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty, based on the works of Dr. Seuss.

The Cat in the Hat tells the story of Horton, an elephant who discovers a speck of dust that contains the Whos, including Jojo, a Who child sent off to military school for thinking too many "thinks." Horton faces a double challenge: not only must he protect the Whos from a world of naysayers and dangers, but he must guard an abandoned egg, left in his care by the irresponsible Mayzie La Bird. Although Horton faces ridicule, danger, kidnapping and a trial, the intrepid Gertrude McFuzz never loses faith in him. Ultimately, the powers of friendship, loyalty, family and community are challenged and emerge triumphant.

Under the direction of Becca Guilderson , with musical direction by Graham Howes, and vocal direction by Thea Koeing, Seussical The Musical features local talent from over 50 performers, including Alan Slipp as Horton, and Jilly Richards as The Cat In The Hat. Supporting actors include Ally Loiselle, Joni Aube, Breagh MacLean, Joel Dauphinee, Kelly Richards, Marietta Laan, Cate Ratcliffe, Maddy Fitzgerald, Justin Brown, Sawyer Brown, and Gretchen Archibald.

Shows will take place at Fountain Performing Arts Centre of King’s-Edgehill School in Windsor, June 1, 2, 8, 9, at 7:00 p.m. with special matinees on June 2, 3, and 9 at 2 p.m. Tickets can be purchased online at QAAW.ca or by visiting The Spoke and Note in Windsor and Box of Delights Book Shop in Wolfville.

Adding to the experience, a special story reading with crafts and treats with the characters before the show is available for children at a cost of $20, which includes admission to the show! Story readings will be held at 12 p.m. on June 2 and 3. Tickets for this event are available only through our website at QAAW.ca

Quick As A Wink Theatre Society is a non-profit, charitable, community theatre group entertaining West Hants, Nova Scotia and beyond. Quick As A Wink’s objectives and performances are conducted and achieved entirely by volunteers and non-profit means.

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Mark Wainman
Communications Manager, Quick As A Wink Theatre Society
C: 902.690.7233
info@qaaw.ca

Spotlight on ... Shelby Marshall!

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Today’s “Spotlight” is on the lovely and talented Shelby Marshall!

Shelby has been a part of our Quick As A Wink community for roughly four years. “I first joined Quick As A Wink when I was asked to play violin in the pit for the 2014 Winkie Awards,” Shelby says. “I had a fantastic time, and I kept coming back for more! In 2015, I got to arrange a bit of music for Cinderella and play in the pit band for You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown. In 2016, I got to play in [the pit for] The Little Mermaid, and then later I worked for Quick As A Wink as a summer student.”

While a lot of Shelby’s involvement with QAAW has been on the music side, her favorite memory is one associated with the social connections that come with the arts. “My favorite Quick As A Wink memory is when I got to walk in the Apple Blossom Festival Parade [in 2015] as a replacement Lucy Van Pelt with the rest of the You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown cast,” Shelby says. “I played in the pit band for that show, and it was nice having the opportunity to get to know the rest of the cast!”

The social aspect of theatre and the ability to connect is what keeps Shelby coming back time and time again. “What I love most about theatre is how collaborative it is and how it brings communities together,” she says. “You can’t put on a show all by yourself. Theatre requires collaborative effort to be successful, and when you create and perform with other people, you create stronger connections with them. You learn to work as part of a collective, and you feel part of something greater than yourself. I love the community that builds up around theatre productions and organizations. It creates a family that can work together on something that they love.”

Though every show allows Shelby to connect with her theatre family, she still has a few specific productions she would especially like to be part of! “I’m a big fan of Cole Porter, and I would love to work on Anything Goes; the dancing in that show is amazing!” Shelby says. “If I were to take a turn on stage, though, I think I could do justice to Samuel Seabury from Hamilton.”

Shelby has been away from Quick As A Wink for the last short while due to working on some other exciting projects. “At the moment I am still in school, studying to be an orchestral conductor,” she says. “Being part of pit bands with Quick As A Wink and other organizations made me want to work as a music director, either in opera or musical theatre. I’m going to be part of the Canadian Operatic Arts Academy this summer as an assistant conductor; we’re doing selections from Sondheim’s Sunday in the Park, and I’m really excited.”

Of course, Shelby has other interests outside of the arts. “When I’m not making music, I love to ride horses in Falmouth!” she says.

Thanks so much for all your contributions to Quick As A Wink Theatre Society, Shelby! We are so appreciative for all your work, and cannot wait to work with you again very soon!

Do you have someone you think deserves to be highlighted in our “Spotlight on …” feature? We are always looking for suggestions on who to feature! Send us an email or Facebook message with the name of your suggestion.

New “Spotlight on …” segments are posted every weekend. We hope you join us next week to celebrate another valued QAAW community member!

Summer Student Blog Post: Nice to Meet You!

Hello Everyone!

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My name is Holly Lohnes, and I am one of the summer students working with Quick As A Wink Theatre Society this summer! You will be hearing from me this summer as I will be posting blogs to keep you up to date on what I have been up to and what has been going on with Quick As A Wink. This is my first summer working with Quick As A Wink, and I am so excited to get started!

So, a little bit about me: I graduated from Acadia University in 2017 with an Undergrad in Music. I am now back at Acadia doing my Education degree, and I have just finished my first year. Outside of school, I am a passionate conductor; I have been the Music Director of the Kings County Concert Band since October of 2017, and I have been the assistant Music Director with the New Horizons band since September of 2017. I also teach beginner and intermediate music lessons to people of all ages. I have experience with singing in both solo, group, and choir performances and Musical Theatre performances. I have been a part of different drama and Musical productions such as Oliver, Annie, The Wizard Of Oz, and The Big Bad Musical.

Earlier this week, I got to meet a few lovely people who are on the board, including Ally, Karen, and Jennifer, and Artistic Director Toven. I am so excited to get started and to be working with this amazing community.

Another thing I have been working on this week is finding a drama production for one of our camps. I have found some good contenders, but stay tuned for what our final decision is going to be. And don’t forget, Seussical is coming up very shortly, the production opens June 1st!

That’s all for now, but I will be back soon.

Holly

Spotlight on ... Yvonne Van Blarcom!

Welcome to our newly revived written “Spotlight on …” segment! The work done at Quick As A Wink would not be possible without the time, energy, talent, and help of numerous QAAW community members. It’s time to celebrate some of the valued members of our team who are essential to our success!

Today’s “Spotlight” is on the wonderful and welcoming Yvonne Van Blarcom!

If you have attended a Quick As A Wink performance in recent years, you have likely met the lovely Yvonne; she has been an essential part of our Front of House team for some time now and currently serves as one of our Front of House co-managers!

Prior to becoming involved with QAAW herself, however, Yvonne was a fan of Quick As A Wink’s work and was a frequent audience member. “I first became involved [with Quick As A Wink] as a spectator [during] Glory Days in 2004,” Yvonne says. “I found out about the play though my children's music connections.  I was super impressed with the story and the music, all written and composed by local talent, [which] was very inspiring.  I then tried to catch all of the shows after that.”

It didn’t take long for Yvonne to become involved with Quick As A Wink herself. “Around 2010, I started playing a musical instrument myself,” she says. “I ended up joining a community concert band and sat next to Jan Gnemmi [QAAW’s other FOH co-manager]. She asked if I'd like to help out with working the table at Front of House at the Quick As A Wink shows. Jan is so sweet; you can't say no! In 2015, Jan was looking to move away from the position and asked if I would like to take it over. With my work commitments, I didn't want to commit to this totally, but I offered to co-manage with her. We're a good team!”

Front of House has proven to be a rewarding experience for Yvonne over the years. “I have a few favourite memories from Front of House,” Yvonne says. “[These include] the smile from a special guest after helping them to their seat, hugs and friendly greetings from folks that I see four times a year at the shows, and sharing a joke with others.”

Yvonne has been a long-time fan of theatre and enjoys all the different aspects that bring a show together. “I have always loved live performances,” she says. “I love watching the pit band as much as I enjoy what is happening on the stage. My daughter would say, 'Mum, you are supposed to be watching the play, not me!' It's [also] fun watching the actors recover from a faux pas; [it] makes it so much more entertaining to me!”

Could QAAW fans ever expect to see Yvonne take the stage herself if the right role arose? “Dream role?” says Yvonne. “No, my skills are best put to use out front!”

So what does Yvonne enjoy doing when she isn’t volunteering her time with QAAW? “Definitely following everything that my two girls do!” she says. This includes Kelsey Van Blarcom, another QAAW community member!

Yvonne is also a passionate musician and enjoys spending her time playing. “I learned to play the clarinet at 46," she says. "See, you are never too old! I took private lessons for two years, playing the recitals alongside my daughters! I now play in two concert bands for fun, one with my husband who plays bass."

Looking to hear Yvonne play for yourself? You may be in luck! “New Horizons band will be playing the music festival at Acadia on April 30th,” Yvonne says, “and the Valley Community Concert band are in the middle of their Senior Homes spring tours.”

Thank you so much for all the wonderful work you do, Yvonne! It is always a pleasure to work with you, and we are so happy to have you are part of our team!

Do you have someone you think deserves to be highlighted in our “Spotlight on …” feature? We are always looking for suggestions on who to feature! Send us an email or Facebook message with the name of your suggestion.

New “Spotlight on …” segments are posted every weekend. We hope you join us next week to celebrate another valued QAAW community member!

Summer Student Blog Post: Drama Camp Continues ...

 Peek-a-boo! Having fun at the Blockhouse. Photo credit: Ally Loiselle

Peek-a-boo! Having fun at the Blockhouse.
Photo credit: Ally Loiselle

Hello again, everyone! It’s time for another Drama Camp update! Thank you to everyone who commented on my previous blog post and shared such kind words; it made me so happy to hear that your children are enjoying camp as much as we are!

Camp continues to be very busy, but also very fun. The last couple days have been spent hard at work rehearsing scenes from the show, making props, and singing our hearts out as we learn the camp song. Camp leader Olivia also taught our campers their choreography to the final song yesterday afternoon, so we can now add dancing to the list of activities as well!

The jokes and funny stories continue to pile up, as well. From ad-libbed lines to silly poses in drama games, there is rarely a moment where at least one of us isn’t laughing. Some notable funny instances from today included all our campers loudly clapping chanting “MANGO MANGO MANGO!” while circling the room during a game, the actors playing our gnome characters trying (somewhat unsuccessfully) to to run and sing their gnome song at high speed, and a series of exaggerated and hilarious faces during a game of “Graveyard.” There is never a dull moment here at camp!

 Our full cast of campers at the end of our trip! Photo credit: Ally Loiselle

Our full cast of campers at the end of our trip!
Photo credit: Ally Loiselle

In addition to having fun, though, our campers have also been taking their roles very seriously and learning a lot about their characters. Yesterday involved a series of activities that encouraged our actors to think about, explore, and create their characters’ personalities and histories. A lot of wonderful and creative material came out of it; for example, two actresses determined that their characters must be estranged sisters, another girl learned how deeply her character valued magic, and another camper determined the reason her character eventually became evil. It’s been so rewarding to watch the campers learn, grow, and become excited about their roles; it’s just one of the many things I love about this job!

Everyone has been working very hard this week, so today we also travelled up to the Fort Edward Blockhouse to take a well-deserved break from rehearsing, spend some time outside, and learn about some local history! It was very warm outside, so we didn’t stay for too long, but it was nice to get out of the church for a little while and enjoy the sunshine! The trip was made even better when we returned and had some lovely frozen Freezies waiting for us. What a productive day!

Camp is truly picking up speed, now; with only two days of camp left already (where has the time gone??), tomorrow we will be doing two full run-throughs of the show and having our campers rehearse without the use of their scripts. It’s so exciting that the final performance is so close!

I likely won’t be able to post again until following the final performance – there is still a lot to prepare! – but you can expect an update from me sometime next week regarding show night. However, why wait for my blog post on the subject when you can some see the show for yourself? Our Drama Camp performance of Holka Polka is open to the public by free will donation and happens this Friday at 7:30pm at KES. These kids have been working hard and deserve a huge audience to see all they have accomplished!

In non-camp related news, last night was also the Pub Trivia Season Finale! Congratulations to the Meeples on their well-deserved win; what an amazing season you played! A huge thank you to all our regular teams who repeatedly come out to play and support us; we hope to see you all for the next Trivia season, which starts THIS TUESDAY (August 1st)!

I’m off for now; lots to do before Friday!

Cheers until next time!

Ally

Drama Camp Spotlight (3/3): Meet Joni!

 Photo credit: Keshia Laffin

Photo credit: Keshia Laffin

It’s time to meet one last member of the cast of this summer’s QAAW Drama Camp production! Meet Joni, the sweet young actress who will be playing the role of Brenda in this Friday’s performance of Holka Polka!

Joni has taken the Quick As A Wink stage many times over the past few years. “I’ve performed in three other of these Quick As A Wink camps [2014’s Captains and Crews, 2015’s Charlotte’s Web, and 2016’s Beauty is Beast], and I’ve performed in Quick As A Wink’s Annie [2016] and The Music Man [2017, as Amaryllis],” she says. “I’ve also done a bunch of other summer camps. At another church in Windsor, I played the role of Rachel Awesome, which is pretty much a girl character of Richard Dawson.”

Joni’s character, Brenda, is a young and kind witch who sets out to wake the prince from a sleeping spell and save the reputation of all the witches in Fairytale Land. “I play Brenda, and one of my favorite things about her is that she is really kind and nice and quirky sometimes,” Joni says.

When it comes to acting, there is very little Joni doesn’t enjoy. “[I like] pretty much everything about acting,” she says. “I like singing and dancing, and I just like performing for everyone else!”

When not onstage, Joni pursues a series of diverse interests. “I go to Avon Dance Academy, so one of my hobbies is dancing,” she says. “I’m in 4H, and also I take swimming lessons.”

Joni has been enjoying her role as Brenda so far. "A big thank you to Quick As A Wink for giving me this opportunity!" she says. Joni looks forward to performing for an audience this Friday and hopes to see you there!

Don’t miss your chance to see Joni and her fellow campers perform! Holka Polka opens Friday, July 28th at 7:30pm at the KES Fountain Theatre. Admission is by free will donation. Come out and see all the hard work our campers have put in over the past week!

Drama Camp Spotlight (2/3): Meet Kevin!

 Photo credit: Keshia Laffin

Photo credit: Keshia Laffin

It’s time to meet another one of our great Drama Camp performers! Meet Kevin, the charming young actor who will be playing the role of the Wolf in this Friday’s production of Holka Polka!

Kevin is no stranger to the stage; you may remember him from his role as Nick in QAAW’s 2016 Drama Camp performance of Beauty is a Beast! He also appeared in productions of Hansel and Gretl and The Three Musketeers.

Kevin’s character, the Wolf, is a misunderstood creature who joins his new friends Brenda and Cindy on a quest to wake the prince from a sleeping spell. Kevin has been having a lot of fun with this character. “I play the Wolf, and I like it because they’re actually telling a real thing,” he says. “Like, wolves aren’t really that bad; they just do what humans do, basically! They hunt, and they do what they need to do to survive!”

Kevin says his favorite thing about theatre is the way it is able to bring words to life. “It’s just really cool to act out a story!” he says. “I just really like it.”

When he isn’t onstage, Kevin has a number of different ways he likes to spend his time. “I play video games!” he says. “And I like when my cousins come over; that’s really nice. And I like my pets!”

Kevin is looking forward to the final performance this Friday and would like to encourage you to come see the show!

Don’t miss your chance to see Kevin and his fellow campers perform! Holka Polka opens this Friday at 7:30pm at the KES Fountain Theatre. Admission is by free will donation. Come out and see all the hard work our campers have put in over the past week!

Drama Camp Spotlight (1/3): Meet Mariasha!

 Photo credit: Keshia Laffin

Photo credit: Keshia Laffin

Looking to learn more about the cast of our upcoming Drama Camp performance of Holka Polka? Meet Mariasha! Mariasha is a talented young actress who will be playing the role of Cindy, a princess who joins her new friends Brenda and the Wolf on a quest to wake the prince from a sinister sleeping spell.

Despite being so young, Mariasha already has an impressive acting resume. “[I’ve performed in] the last three [Quick As A Wink Drama Camp] plays, which were Beauty is a Beast, Charlotte’s Web, and Captains and Crews,” she says. “I’ve also done a ton of school plays, and I did a Quick As A Wink play that wasn’t a camp, which was Glory Days!”

Mariasha is an active fan of the arts. “I like acting because it is a way to express myself,” she says. “I [also] play piano, I draw, and I like to read a lot.”

Mariasha is excited for this Friday’s performance and hopes to see you in the audience. “Come see the show!” she says.

Don’t miss your chance to see Mariasha and her fellow campers perform! Holka Polka opens this Friday at 7:30pm at the KES Fountain Theatre. Admission is by free will donation. Come out and see all the hard work our campers have put in over the past week!