Tag Archives: MIPAC

Movie Night in Windsor

Locally filmed “Weirdos” being screened at MIPAC

(Windsor, NS)  The Mermaid Imperial Performing Arts Center (MIPAC) will welcome movie fans for the first time in nearly twenty years with a special community screening of Bruce McDonald’s acclaimed WEIRDOS. Shot partially on location in Windsor, the touching coming-of-age film will be shown on Friday evening, June 16th at 7:30 PM. 

Based on an original screenplay by Daniel MacIvor, Weirdos follows the story of fifteen-year-old Kit (Dylan Authors) who dreams of a more glamorous life in the big city, faraway from the small town where he lives with his father (Allan Hawco) and grandmother (Cathy Jones). Enlisting the help of his girlfriend Alice (Julia Sara Stone), they hitchhike towards a new home with his glamorous, artistic mother Laura (Molly Parker). As Kit and Alice reach their final destination their relationship is tested as Kit comes to realize that his life will change forever.

The film was nominated for six Canadian Screen Awards, including Best Motion Picture, Molly Parker for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role, Daniel MacIvor for Original Screenplay, Duff Smith for Achievement in Editing, Bethana Briffett for Achievement in Costume Design, and Matt Likely for Achievement in Art Direction. The production premiered at the 2016 Toronto International Film Festival and has since been applauded by enthusiastic audiences at both national and international film festivals.

The one-time screening is intended to celebrate the Town of Windsor’s importance as a destination for film crews. In addition to Weirdos, local streetscapes, homes and businesses (including MIPAC) have provided the backdrop for a number of other feature films, including Two If By SeaThe River King, The Memory Keeper’s Daughter, Blackbird, and Cloudburst, as well as a number of TV movies and series.

The Imperial Theatre was built by John H. ‘Jack’ Bustin in 1914 (refurbished following a fire in 1931), and regularly presented plays, concerts and traveling musical shows in addition to films. Country and Western greats including Hank Snow, Wilf Carter, Kitty Wells and Smiley Bates performed on the Imperial stage, while The Windsor Concert Party variety shows entertained troops stationed nearby as well as local residents.

In 1947 the Theatre was sold to the B & L cinema chain (Bernstein and Lieberman) of Saint John, NB, the pioneering company who introduced “talkies” to the Maritimes.  The Imperial was sold again to Dr. Garth and Lauren Vaughan in 1986, who promoted both live entertainment and movie screenings.  Following their retirement, Mermaid Theatre acquired the facility in 2003, and began the extensive restorations that have resulted in the MIPAC renaissance.  Recent upgrades to both interior and façade have been supported by the Province of Nova Scotia’s Community Facilities Improvement Program and The Government of Canada’s 150 Community Infrastructure Program.

The black-and-white film is rated PG and runs 85 minutes.  Showtime is 7:30pm.  Admission to the Weirdos screening is $14, with tickets available online at Ticketpro.ca, by phone at 888-311-9090 or in person at Windsor Home Hardware and at the door.

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Explore our New Season

Check out MIPAC’s exciting line-up for the 2015-16 MIPAC Performing Arts Series.  With thirteen diverse performances, MIPAC invites you to join us in a blend of Canadian musical icons and family performances that will take you from a down-home Cape Breton kitchen party to an Indigenous dance-theatre performance based on the traditions of oral storytelling.  We hope you can join us!

The MIPAC Performing Arts Series welcomes back some familiar faces as well as introduces you to some new talent that might just take you by surprise.  Some of Canada’s most popular musical artists will have you singing, toe tapping and dancing in your seats.  With a mix of puppetry, dance, and theatre, our Family Series offers you six professional performances to entertain both the young and young-at-heart.

Launching the Family Series on Sunday, September 20 is Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia’s gentle stage adaptation of Goodnight Moon & The Runaway Bunny.  October heats up with three musical performances beginning with Polaris music nominees, husband and wife musical team, Luke Doucet and Melissa McClelland of Whitehorse.   Annapolis Valley’s homegrown band The Spinney Brothers take the stage on October 17 in their unique style of traditional southern flavoured bluegrass music that led to their Nova Scotia Country Music Hall of Fame induction in 2010.  On October 30, the Joe Murphy Blues Bonanza with Dave MacLean and Watermelon Slim brings together these renowned musicians in a musical collaboration sure to get your blues flowing. 

On November 22, MIPAC welcomes back to its Family Fare Series Motus O in their exhilarating performance Alice. Rich in athleticism and innovative dance theatre, Alice is adapted from Lewis Carroll’s whimsical stories, Alice In Wonderland and Through The Looking Glass.  On January 19, Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia returns with its flagship production of The Very Hungry Caterpillar & Other Eric Carle Favourites.  Maritime Marionettes present The Lonely Leprechaun on February 14.  Hailing from Truro, NS, these regulars to the MIPAC stage tell the story of Sally, whose muse magically appears as Sandy, the lonely leprechaun.  

Like his trademark suit, David Myles’ music is timeless.  David’s only artistic constants are his always growing, shape shifting songwriting, and his exceptional ability to entertain.  Join David on the MIPAC stage March 18 for an evening of vocal harmonies and irresistible energy. 

Springtime blooms at MIPAC with four April performances. On April 2, the Yukon-based Ramshackle Theatre will take your family along for a Sci-Fi Double Feature Cardboard Science Fiction Puppet Show. This all ages cardboard puppet show is filmed and projected live onto the big screen, to create a one-take 1960s sci-fi B-movie.  Joel Plaskett Emergency proves he can be all things to all people, as he rocks MIPAC on April 7 with one of the most diverse and fan pleasing albums of his career.   In a ‘love letter to music,’ 6 Guitars is a pitch perfect blend of music, comedy, and characters. Chase Padgett is one talented musician who delivers a virtuosic performance as he becomes 6 different guitar players each with their own distinct voice, views, and musical style. 

In a tender coming-of-age story, Red Sky Theatre’s Mistatim blends cultural barriers in a story of truest friendships and communication.  With just a simple wooden fence separating Calvin on his father’s ranch and Speck on her reservation, Calvin attempts to ‘break’ Mistatim the only horse no one else could tame in order to prove himself to his father.  Told through the beauty of Indigenous dance and storytelling, don’t miss seeing Canada’s most celebrated contemporary dance-theatre company. 

Are you ready for some down-home good time? On May 14, Cape Breton’s electrifying line-up of East Coast musicians, Còig (Ko-ig) wraps up the season in an exciting show not to be missed.  Originally coming together for the Celtic Colours International Festival, Còig is today one of Cape Breton’s most captivating young bands.  With numerous accolades and awards, these successful solo musicians in their own right come together to bring you one exhilarating ‘kitchen party’ full of banjo, bouzouki, fiddle, mandolin, flute, whistle, vocals and piano.  This is what Cape Breton is all about!


TICKET INFORMATION

Tickets on sale now at Ticketpro.ca, by phone at 1-888-311-9090, or in person at Windsor Home Hardware and all other Ticketpro outlets.

MIPAC has introduced two special options to help you get the most of your performing arts experience:   

THE VIP PACKAGE:
David Myles, Joel Plaskett Emergency & Whitehorse
Attend all three performances for $110

  • Guaranteed seating in first two rows
  • Invitation to post-show reception with complimentary refreshments.

FAMILY PACKAGE:
Pick any four Family Series shows for $48. General seating.
(regular $13 Advance | $15 Door.) 

For full season details on the 2015-16 line up, go to: mermaidtheatre.ca/mipac/current-season

goodnight moonFAMILY SERIES Mermaid Theatre
Goodnight Moon & The Runaway Bunny

Sun, Sep 20 @ 2pm 
whitehorse logo Whitehorse
Sat, Oct 10 @ 8:00pm
 

IMG_2391-300x214
The Spinney Brothers
Sat, Oct 17 @ 4pm
2015-Oct30-joe murphy Joe Murphy Blues Bonanza
with special guests
Fri, Oct 30 @ 8pm
Motus O Alice2FAMILY SERIES Motus O Theatre
Alice in Wonderland 
Sun, Nov 22 @ 4pm
CaterpillarFAMILY SERIES Mermaid Theatre
The Very Hungry Caterpillar & 
Tue Jan 19 @ 6:30pm
lonely leprechaunFAMILY SERIES Maritime Marionettes
The Lonely Leprechaun
Sun, Feb 14 @ 2pm

David Myles David Myles
Fri, March 18 @ 8pm
ramshackle 2FAMILY SERIES
Ramshackle Theatre
Sci-Fi Double Feature: 
Sat, April 2 @ 2pm

joel plaskett emergency Joel Plaskett Emergency
Thu, Apr 7 @ 8pm
6 guitars copy 6 Guitars
Fri, April 22 @ 7:00pm
Mistatim - Red Sky 175FAMILY SERIES Red Sky Theatre
Mistatim
Fri, Apr 29 @ 6:30pm
coig Còig
Sat, May 14 @ 7:00pm

Please visit our website at Mermaidtheatre.ca

NOTE: Due to technical difficulties, our main website, mermaidtheatre.ca, is not coming up in search results.  You can reach the site by clicking here.

Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia is located at 132 Gerrish Street, P.O. Box 2697, Windsor, NS  B0N 2T0, CANADA

Our main website for Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia is
mermaidtheatre.ca

Our website for Mermaid Imperial Performing Arts Centre is at:
mermaidtheatre.ca/MIPAC

We’re on Facebook at:

http://facebook.com/MermaidTheatre
http://facebook.com/MermaidImperial

Puppet Cabaret Fundraiser – Sat, Jan 31 from 7-10pm

Mermaid Puppet Cabaret Fundraiser

Live Auction, Silent Auction, and Great Entertainment
Saturday, January 31, 2015 — 7-10pm

Hello to all friends of Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia,

We wanted to let you know about our second annual event to raise funds to support Mermaid’s unique community outreach programs.  Please join us for our Puppet Cabaret Fundraiser on Saturday, January 31, 2015 from 7-10 PM at the Mermaid Imperial Performing Arts Centre, 106 Gerrish Street in Downtown Windsor.

Along with warm and cold appetizers provided by Cocoa Pesto Catering, a cash bar, and the chance to bid on some great auction items, our guests will be treated to entertainment performed by some of Windsor/West Hants’ most prominent citizens, as well as Mermaid’s own talented creative team.

Join us for an evening of laughter and camaraderie.  Hosted on the MIPAC stage, this is definitely not Mermaid’s usual Theatre for Young Audiences fare!

IMG_0970Local community puppeteers include:
Sarah Arthur, Innkeeper at the Clockmaker’s Inn
Paul Beazley, Mayor of Windsor
Joseph Seagram, Headmaster at King’s-Edgehill School and
Shayla Steeves, owner Blossoms of the Valley and the Lavender Pumpkin Piano Cafe

Tickets are $60 (A tax receipt will be issued for a portion of the ticket price, determined after the event.)  Please note: this event is for ages 19+ only.

Check out some of the excellent items we’ll be auctioning off at our Facebook event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/1592929157607257/

Tickets are available at Mermaid Theatre’s office, and at the door.  We hope to see you there!

cabaret2015

Histories of the Summer Student: Part I

Note: this blog post was submitted by Rick, our summer assistant at Mermaid Theatre, who unfortunately missed his first day due to a terrible case of the flu. This is part one of a series, apparently — Jason.


 

My commencement at the Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia, as their summer student, was much anticipated.

Having returned in April to my homeland from imparting my wisdom, knowledge and disposition to the newest generation of Korean progenies across the seas I was eager to embark on another adventure. After my homecoming I promptly set out to seek my fortune as a member of the celebrated workforce of Nova Scotia.

After a month of searching was able to procure an interview at Mermaid Theatre with the luminous general manager, Lisa Gleave. Two days following (a lifetime to be sure), I received an audible message confirming my appointment as the summer student commencing June 2nd. I spent the subsequent weeks putting my affairs in order and delighting myself by reuniting with estranged friends.

On the eve of my inauguration I busied myself with the task of setting out my finest “business casual” garments and preparing a picnic lunch; the town of Windsor has a myriad of fine outdoor spaces for one to spend an hour out of doors in quiet repose. It was in these moments of preparation when the most dastardly of illnesses sprung upon me (I was no doubt purposefully infected my the youngest member of my eldest sister’s brood.) For hours my body reeled through feverish fits. I finally resolved to inform my employers of my unquestionably fatal situation; I sent an electronic letter to my future mentor, Jason Tucker, and slipped back into my feverish nightmares.

I woke, to my surprise, and finding myself still very much alive, albeit in a dwindling state, I set upon nursing myself back to relative health. Spurred on by the encouragement and well wishes of my new employers, sent that very morn, I endeavoured to vanquish the remnants of illness from me. With my sickbed as my vessel, chicken noodle soup as the wind in my sails, and Mermaid Theatre as my destination; I set my heading and soared towards my own recovery.

IMG308The following morning, still fatigued, I began my expedition, with my trusty companion (of whom I will speak more of in subsequent entries), to the town of Windsor and my bright future.

After passing the ascetic MIPAC entrance I arrived at the façade of the main offices. Upon entering the Mermaid Theatre foyer I was greeted by a particularly friendly and scholarly dinosaur (some hyper-intelligent raptor of sorts). To my left I hearkened, “you must be Rick… the new summer student”.

End of Part I

News from Mermaid: Stella, Caterpillar, MIPAC, and More!

Hello friends of Mermaid Theatre!

We’ve been very busy for the last few months, and we’ve still got lots to do.  Here’s an update of the latest events from here in our facility in Windsor.

* Our biggest job is to finish building the puppets and set pieces for our newest production, Stella Queen of the Snow.  The production team is going full throttle to get everything ready.  We have people sewing, painting, carving, building, composing, and preparing for the premiere next month and subsequent fall tour.  Things are really starting to come together.  Rehearsals begin this month, and we’re presenting the world premiere of the show at the Magnetic North / STAGES Theatre Festival, taking place together in Halifax in June, with a US/Canadian tour to follow in the fall.  We’ll post the schedule in the coming weeks.

* Our Swimmy, Frederick, & Inch by Inch company returned from tour a couple of weeks ago after a successful tour with nearly 60 shows in 14 states.  Welcome home, folks!

"Caterpillar" in Korea, 2014

“Caterpillar” in Korea, 2014

* We still have two companies on the road touring The Very Hungry Caterpillar & Other Eric Carle Favourites.  One company is currently in their final venue for a multi-week run at the Chicago Children’s Theatre.  The other company has completed over 150 shows and is currently finishing their tour with a four-week visit to South Korea and had a great response from our first-ever audiences in the Kingdom of Bahrain for their Spring of Culture Festival in March.  We’ll also be touring Caterpillar again in the fall, with over 200 shows in 25 states and 3 provinces.  We’ll post that schedule in the coming weeks as well.

* Since September 1, 2013, the three touring companies have performed over 385 shows for a combined audience of over 225,000 people!  Keep up the good work and safe travels to the “Caterpillar” companies!

* We’re currently welcoming nine aspiring puppeteers to Mermaid’s annual ANIMOTION Puppetry Intensive.  They’ve come from several provinces to study with us, and Jim and Struan are keeping them very busy.

Animotion participants, having mastered the art of juggling, await further instruction.

Animotion participants, having mastered the art of juggling, await further instruction.

* At MIPAC, our local theatre, we’re hosting the final two shows of our 2013-14 Entertainment Series.  SQUID Precision Drummers with Cassie & Maggie MacDonald are playing this Saturday, May 3, at 2pm; and Canadian playwright Jeremy Webb brings his online-dating comedy FISHING to our stage on May 17 at 7pm.

squid-fish

* Mermaid’s Youtheatre is performing their new project, Be the Peace, at the Nova Scotia High School Dramafest in Halifax this weekend, with several performances in the coming months at several high schools around the province.

* Finally, we’re looking for a summer student here at the office.  This is a full time job for 12 weeks beginning June 2.  The posting is on the job bank.gc.ca website.  It’s open to students who are returning to school in the fall. If you or someone you know in the Windsor, NS area wants to work in a cool place, please get in touch.  The deadline is May 15.

Thanks for reading.  Have a good weekend!

@SpringofCulture and South Korea tour for #VeryHungryCaterpillar, and other news from Mermaid!

It has been a wild ride here at Mermaid Theatre’s headquarters in Windsor, NS for the past few months. We’ve put three shows out on the road, most recently sending off Mermaid veterans Christine Oakey, Kaitlin Morrow and Seann Murray with our Leo Lionni’s Swimmy, Frederick & Inch by Inch. They’re currently doing shows in the Tennessee, Arkansas, Louisiana, and Texas, and we totally envy them at this time of year.

Seann, Christine, and Kaitlin with some of their friends from "Swimmy, Frederick and Inch by Inch"

Seann, Christine, and Kaitlin with some of their friends from “Swimmy, Frederick and Inch by Inch”

Swimmy heads back North in March, with dates in New England and the Midwest. Our full schedules for all tours are here.

Back at home, we launched our 6th performing arts season at MIPAC, and had a great second workshop for our new production Stella, Queen of the Snow, based on the book by Marie-Louise Gay.  Also, our revitalized Youtheatre group has begun work on their new project on the topic of violence against women and girls.

Things don’t appear to be slowing down, and to top it off we’ve been dealing with our #WintryWednesdays, which means we’ve had major winter storms and office disruptions for at least the past three Wednesdays.  The good news is we’ve got two exciting international engagements happening in the next couple of months.  The first will see The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Other Eric Carle Favourites head to the Kingdom of Bahrain for a week-long engagement at the Spring of Culture Festival. This touring company (one of two that are currently touring Caterpillar around the U.S. and Canada) consisting of Yvonne Yip (SM), Jonny Thompson, and Mara Zigler, will be joined in Bahrain by Mermaid’s Artistic Director Jim Morrow and General Manager Lisa Gleave.  Following that festival, the company (after a brief Roman holiday) will have a week off and then fly to Seoul, South Korea for a four-week run in and around the city.  We’ll get the details posted on our website soon.

April and May also see another installment of our ANIMOTION training workshop happening here at HQ. We’re pleased to report that it is almost full and we’ll be turning out another group of professionals, pre-professionals and educators freshly schooled in the art of puppetry—Mermaid style.

Directly following that, rehearsal for Stella will begin, as we will be showcasing the world premiere as a co-present with the Stages Festival and Magnetic North Theatre Festival in Halifax in late June.

Artistic Director Jim Morrow carves a puppet for "Stella Queen of the Snow"

Artistic Director Jim Morrow carves a puppet for “Stella Queen of the Snow”

Finally, we at the office would like to offer a “warm” shout-out to the other touring Caterpillar company (Shawn Sorensen, Kat McCormack and Simon Rainville), who have endured freezing Midwest winter weather and touring van malfunctions in good spirits and with minimal complaining.  We hope that 5-week sit-down run with the Chicago Children’s Theatre in the spring makes up for it!

Two Mermaid Theatre "Caterpillar" companies meet on tour in Toronto.

Two Mermaid Theatre “Caterpillar” companies cross paths while on simultaneous tours in the US and Canada. Toronto, 2013.