A very full schedule at the Academy Theatre will take everyone into the Christmas season before we know it! After this year’s final TIFF film A Man Called Ove on September 12, the music gets rolling with Grammy winner Steve Earle (September 18), and a few tribute acts (“Flying Solo – a tribute to Harrison, Lennon & McCartney” September 16; “We Walk the Line – a Johnny Cash experience” September 30; and “PIGS – Canada’s Pink Floyd” October 8).
After bringing in Alan Doyle last March, the Academy is thrilled to present another former Great Big Sea member Séan McCann on October 20. Séan’s music and inspirational messages are guaranteed to provide an uplifting experience for all lucky enough to catch this show. The next night (October 21), we bring internationally respected Mediterranean guitarist Pavlo to our stage. A remarkable talent and live entertainer himself, Pavlo is touring with some equally exceptional musicians who will amaze everyone present.
Then we switch gears to live theatre with the one-woman play Jake’s Gift, presented on October 28, exactly two weeks before Remembrance Day. Jake’s Gift is a surprisingly funny, multi-award winning drama that tells the story of a Canadian WW2 veteran’s reluctant return to Normandy, France, for the 60th Anniversary of D-Day. While roaming the shores of Juno Beach, Jake encounters Isabelle, a precocious ten-year-old from the local village whose inquisitive nature and charm challenge the old soldier to confront some long ignored ghosts – most notably, the wartime death of his eldest brother, Chester, a once promising young musician. At its heart, Jake’s Gift is about the legacy of remembrance and makes personal the story behind one soldier’s grave. (Visit www.jakesgift.com for more information.)
While all the above events are going on in our 660-seat main auditorium, we will also present small intimate concerts in our second floor lounge. Limited to just 50 attendees, these shows provide a delightfully casual ambience and a close interaction with some superb talents. On September 28, Kelly Burrows will appear (with Maevens bandmate Mike Mazzei). Keep in touch with us at www.academytheatre.ca to see who else will be appearing in this small venue during the fall.
Looking ahead into November, some great excitement will arrive with our annual musical production. This year, we present Roald Dahl’s Willy Wonka – a colourful, magical adventure that we know you’ll find it to be “a scrumdiddlyumptious musical guaranteed to delight everyone’s sweet tooth.” (MTI).
Lastly, we lead into our 125th anniversary celebration with a huge capital fundraising campaign – Take a Seat at the Academy Theatre! With the aid of federal grants (Canada 150 Infrastructure, and Enabling Accessibility), we are embarking on some major improvements to our building. Most notably, we will replace all the seats on the orchestra level with larger, more comfortable seats. For a donation of $500, you can have your name (or the name of a loved one) inscribed on a plaque on one of these new seats. Watch for more exciting news, including some sensational entertainment coming in 2018!