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bruce county playhouse

Hub Staff

On May 27, the Artistic Director of the Bruce County Playhouse, Natalie Robitaille delivered a delegation to the Saugeen Shores Council. Robitaille delighted council members by gifting them each two tickets to their summer line-up as well as the Opening Night Gala, set to take place June 27.

Robitaille took councillors back to January of 2016, when Council approved the usage of the Town Hall by the Bruce County Playhouse and thanked them again for the opportunity. The continued support from the Town and the community, including many corporate sponsors and businesses that advertise through their programs, has allowed the Playhouse to flourish into a theatre group sought out by audiences, actors and playwrights alike.

The Playhouse production line has expanded from a single show in their first year to a full summer season of two plays, a family series and their first every musical, Nunsense. Robitaille estimated an attendance of close to 3,000 last year and pointed out how their audience gives back to the local economy as theatre goers enjoy dinner before the show or an ice cream following a performance.

Robitaille also mentioned the Playhouse will hire five local summer employees and, for the third year, take on a summer co-op applicant, this year Gracienne Swarbrick from Saugeen District Secondary School.

As they raise the curtain on their fifth season, the group is now being recognized outside of Saugeen Shores as well. This year, the Bruce County Playhouse has received more than 450 applications from Toronto acting agencies.

“It’s amazing," exclaimed Robitaille. "The word is getting out that we are a very good, hard working young company, worth joining for the summer," she said, modestly admitting that the beach might also have something to do with it.

In addition to actors taking notice, playwrights have also begun submitting scripts for the Playhouse to premiere.

As for future growth, Robitaille spoke of fostering more community partnerships, developing a “young company” program and improving audience seating at the Southampton Town Hall. She hoped for continued support from Council to help reach these goals despite the looming cuts to arts funding.

Mayor Luke Charbonneau thanked the Artistic Director and entire Board who were all in attendance. “Congratulations on your five years,” said Charbonneau. “It’s been very successful, increasingly successful every year," he praised.

“Frankly, if you see no other show anywhere, on television or on stage or anywhere else this summer, see Nunsense,” added the Mayor. “That’s one of the best shows there is. It’s going to be a huge hit," he said, speculating the local theatre group will "blow through" their 3,000 audience target.

For ticket information visit brucecountyplayhouse.ca.