Soulpepper has announced their 2018-2019 season!
The 2018-2019 season kicks off in October on the Mainstage with the Canadian Premiere of The Royale by Marco Ramirez (Orange is the New Black, Daredevil) inspired by the true story of Jack Johnson and ‘The Fight of the Century’ and directed by Soulpepper Resident Artist Guillermo Verdecchia.
The Royale will be followed by the Canadian Premiere of Escaped Alone from master playwright Caryl Churchill in a co-production with Necessary Angel Theatre Company, featuring an all-female creative and production team and directed by Necessary Angel’s Artistic Director Jennifer Tarver. Winner of the Writer’s Guild Award for Best Play, Escaped Alone is a three-dimensional snapshot of how society registers the early signals of impending disaster.
Also this Fall, Soulpepper will be partnering with three companies to explore identity:
- First up, the multidisciplinary Oraltorio: a Theatrical Mixtape, a personal and communal coming of age story produced by Obsidian Theatre Company and directed by Soulpepper Academy graduate Mumbi Tindyebwa Otu.
- Next, from British Columbia and beginning their national tour in Toronto, comes Universal Limited’s JAPANESE PROBLEM, an immersive performance about Japanese-Canadian internment camps during WWII.
- And finally, the World Premiere of Yellow Rabbit from Silk Bath Collective, where the desire to belong warps into a battle for racial supremacy under the lights of a post-nuclear wasteland.
The Soulpepper Family Festival returns in December for its fifth year. Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, adapted by Michael Shamata, will feature Soulpepper Founding Member Joseph Ziegler. Bad Hats Theatre will be returning with their Dora Award winning production of Peter Pan. And finishing off the Family Festival in early 2019 is the World Premiere of a new Soulpepper musical, Rose, based on Gertrude Stein’s The World Is Round, created by Sarah Wilson and Mike Ross (co-creator Spoon River, Critics’ Pick – New York Times). More Family Festival programming will be announced later this fall.
In January 2019, Soulpepper’s Acting Artistic Director Alan Dilworth will direct a limited run of Kate Hennig’s The Virgin Trial. The Virgin Trial, the companion piece to The Last Wife, was originally commissioned by the Stratford Festival and premiered in 2017 to rave reviews. This thriller explores the dangerous world of intrigue in the Tudor court through the eyes of young Princess Elizabeth.
In February comes Little Menace: Pinter Plays, directed by Thomas Moschopoulos (Soulpepper’s Drummond-Dorrance International Resident Artist). This collection of short works unmasks the passion and absurdity within us all and commemorates ten years since Harold Pinter’s death. And in March, Alan Dilworth directs the World Premiere of Soulpepper Academy graduate Sina Gilani’s Wedding at Aulis, which places the audiences in the genesis of the Trojan War.
The Spring features two Tony Award-winning plays: Copenhagen by Michael Frayn and directed by Academy graduate Katrina Darychuk, followed by the Pulitzer prize-winning epic August: Osage County written by Tracy Letts and directed by Jackie Maxwell. Copenhagen tells the story of two scientists who meet in occupied Denmark as countries race to create the ultimate Bomb. August: Osage Country is a searing, sharp portrayal of a mother, her daughters and the father who vanished from their lives.
In May is the Canadian Premiere of bracing, poetic and honest The Brothers Size from Tarell Alvin McCraney, the writer of the 2017 Academy Award-winner for Best Picture Moonlight, and directed by Academy graduate Mumbi Tindyebwa Otu.
And in June, the season wraps up with 88 KEYS, a new concert created by Tom Allen and the Slaight Family Director of Music Mike Ross about the ‘King of the Instruments’– the piano.
Soulpepper will be offering ASL interpreted performances and, for the first time, Relaxed Performances for select dates. For more details, click here.
This season includes new voices and voices we have grown to love and cherish. These offerings will affirm Soulpepper is home to one of the most vibrant artistic companies in Canada. – Alan Dilworth, Acting Artistic Director
SOULPEPPER PROGRAMMING OCTOBER 2018 TO JUNE 2019
Oraltorio: a Theatrical Mixtape
Obsidian Theatre Company
Written and performed by MOTION Music and performed by DJ L’OQENZ / Directed by Mumbi Tindyebwa Otu
October 2 to October 20, 2018. Opening night is October 4.
Part poetry slam, part house party – a coming of age story like no other. Born in the Northside, two Toronto girls grapple with womanhood and identity as they journey through their histories of ancient, contemporary, and Afro-futuristic soundscapes. The traditional storyteller and drummer are reborn in the beats and rhymes of the B Girl and the DJ. In association with MotionLive and IFT Theatre, Oraltorio has been developed in part through The Collaborations at Canada’s National Arts Centre.
Marco Ramirez / Directed by Guillermo Verdecchia
October 12 – November 11, 2018. Opening night is October 18. ASL interpreted performances on November 1 and 3, 2018.
Not all champions are made inside the ring. Based on the true story of World Heavyweight Champion Jack Johnson and ‘The Fight of the Century’, playwright Marco Ramirez (Orange is the New Black, Daredevil) shows us the deeply human cost of making history.
Created by Universal Limited
Performed by Yoshié Bancroft, Daniel Doerksen, Brent Hirose and Nicole Yukiko / Directed by Joanna Garfinkel
October 24 – 28, 2018. Warning – Limited Seating
In 1942, over 24,000 Japanese Canadians were removed from their homes. Over 8,000 of them were taken to the barns at Hastings Park, with women and children housed in animal stalls. A recreated stall becomes a powerfully immersive space where their stories are brought to life. The first stop on a national tour, JAPANESE PROBLEM invites Toronto audiences to experience the past, and hear it being echoed today.
Caryl Churchill / Co-produced with Necessary Angel Theatre / Directed by Jennifer Tarver
October 25 – November 25, 2018. Opening night is November 1. Relaxed Performance on November 10, 2018.
The apocalypse begins with tea. Caryl Churchill’s Escaped Alone is a poetic and devastating image of our world, that may be closer than we think. Masterfully crafting humorous and haunting language, Churchill has imbedded a prescient message to humanity in the form of a play. Rather than it being a play with a message, it is a three-dimensional snapshot that illuminates how we as a society register the first signals of impending disaster as they infiltrate the routine everyday life. Canadian Premiere / Winner of the Writer’s Guild Award for Best Play
Silk Bath Collective
Written by Bessie Cheng, Aaron Jan, and Gloria Mok, with contributions from the company / Directed by Jasmine Chen
November 23 – December 1, 2018. Opening night is November 24.
Set under the lights of a post-nuclear wasteland, two contestants battle it out for a spot in the Chinese sanctuary city of Rich- Man Hill. The winner is granted refuge. The loser dies. In a battle for racial supremacy, what are we willing to sacrifice and who are we willing to leave behind? From Silk Bath Collective comes the next chapter in the search for belonging. Performed in English, Mandarin, and Cantonese (with Chinese and English surtitles) World Premiere
A Christmas Carol
Charles Dickens / Adapted by Michael Shamata Remount / Directed by Joseph Ziegler / December 7 to December 24, 2018.
Soulpepper’s beloved production of A Christmas Carol has become a Toronto holiday tradition. Follow Ebenezer Scrooge as he is visited by three ghosts who help him understand the importance of charity in the holiday season. Recommended for ages 8+
Bad Hats Theatre / J.M. Barrie
Adapted by Fiona Sauder & Reanne Spitzer Music by Landon Doak
Arrangements by Nathan Carroll & Company / Directed by Severn Thompson
December 8, 2018 – January 5, 2019. Opening night is December 12. Relaxed performances on December 15 and 19, 2018.
Pirates. Lost Boys. A ticking crocodile. The fantastical audience favourite is back! J.M. Barrie’s classic story about the boy who would never grow up is given a lively musical reimagining for kids and kids-at-heart. Winner – Dora Awards for Outstanding Production, Outstanding Ensemble, & Outstanding Direction Recommended for ages 3+
Music and Book by Mike Ross / Lyrics and Book by Sarah Wilson / Directed by Gregory Prest
From Gertrude Stein’s The World is Round
January 17 – February 10, 2019. Opening night is January 23. Relaxed performances on January 27 and February 2, 2019.
Meet Rose, a quiet kid from the town of Somewhere, who sees the world a little differently. To discover her place in the world she must embark on the adventure of a lifetime and conquer the mountain that stands in her way. See just how high Rose can go in this whimsical and inspiring new musical from Sarah Wilson and Mike Ross, co-creator of Spoon River (Critics’ Pick – New York Times). World Premiere Recommended for ages 5+
The Virgin Trial
Kate Hennig / Originally commissioned by and premiered at the Stratford Festival Directed by Alan Dilworth
January 19 – February 3, 2019. Opening night is January 24.
Princess Elizabeth navigates a labyrinth of political and sexual intrigue in the Tudor court, threatening her freedom and her life. Soulpepper presents the Stratford Festival’s highly acclaimed companion piece to the runaway hit The Last Wife.
Little Menace: Pinter Plays
Harold Pinter / Directed by Thomas Moschopoulos / February 16 to March 10, 2019. Opening night is February 21.
Master of dark comedy, Harold Pinter unmasks the passions and absurdities that live within us all. Each play within this showcase of short works delivers the perfect punch.
Wedding at Aulis
Sina Gilani / A version of Iphigenia in Aulis by Euripides Directed by Alan Dilworth
March 22 – April 7, 2019. Opening Night is March 28. Warning – Extremely Limited Seating
To get the one thing he needs, Agamemnon must destroy the one thing he loves. A uniquely immersive experience places the audience at the heart of the genesis of the Trojan War. World Premiere
Michael Frayn / Directed by Katrina Darychuk / April 6 – 28, 2019. Opening night is April 12.
Two tiny particles colliding can cause a nuclear reaction. It is 1941, nations race to perfect The Bomb, and two scientists meet in occupied Denmark for a conversation that would change the course of history. Michael Frayn (Noises Off, Democracy) invites us to bear witness to the ultimate ethical impasse. Tony Award-Winner for Best Play
The Brothers Size
Tarell Alvin McCraney / Directed by Mumbi Tindyebwa Otu / May 4 – 26, 2019. Opening night is May 10.
In the Deep South, music and ritual intertwine with Yoruba mythology, in this explosive story of a prodigal brother’s return home. From the writer of Moonlight, the 2017 Academy Award winner for Best Picture, comes a bracing, honest, and moving portrait of brotherhood. Canadian Premiere
August: Osage County
Tracy Letts / Directed by Jackie Maxwell
May 18 – June 15, 2019. Opening night is May 24. ASL interpreted performances on June 6 and 8, 2019.
When their father vanishes, three daughters return home to support their mother. The result is an epic portrait of the modern dysfunctional family. Fiercely funny and bitingly brutal. Tony Award-Winner for Best Play Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Drama.
SOULPEPPER MUSIC PROGRAMMING 2018-2019:
Each original Soulpepper Concert revolves around a time, place, or artist crafted by a team of incomparable performers. The Concert Series is led by Slaight Family Director of Music Mike Ross. Check the season calendar for dates and times.
Written by Tom Allen / Directed by Mike Ross / June 1 – 21, 2019.
88 keys, 230 strings, and 7,500 working parts make up every piano. For three hundred years, it has been the vehicle through which genius was conveyed, from Beethoven and Chopin to Fats Domino, Ray Charles, and Billy Joel. Mike Ross leads Soulpepper musicians on an exploration of the ‘King of the Instruments’.