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June 2007 - Nr. 6


The Editor
Zum Vatertag
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KW & Beyond
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Art History - June
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Balanchine's Don Quixote
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Met Pays Tribute
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Aboriginal Art at AGO
Bernini in Focus
New Citizens Through Art
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Canada Council Arts Challenge
To Be A Famous Writer
5 Star Experience
Regreening of Canada
Sick, Injured Wild Animal
Astronaut Thomas Reiter
Tax Freedom Day Earlier
VW: Every Model a Hybrid

KW & Beyond

  by Irena Syrokomla

Irena SyrokomlaIntimate Exchanges – Theatre & Company in Kitchener

Theatre & Company is closing its very turbulent season with a modern play by Alan Ayckbourn Intimate Exchanges. It is a comedy showing how small decisions affect future outcomes, how different reactions may have a very significant influence on what will happen. The entire script – 17 hours long – offers 16 possible endings of Celia/Sylvie/Irena and Toby/Miles/Lionel/Joe encounters. Considering limited time available for rehearsals - therefore limits put on paths and solutions – Leah Cherniak (Director) had to select only two paths for the play. Some evenings it is Paul Braunstein as Joe Hepplewick & Kerry Ann Doherty as Celia Teasdale  [Photo: courtesy of Theatre and Company]path no.1, another evening it is path no.2. There are only two actors, Kerry Ann Doherty playing all of the female roles, and Paul Braunstein all of the male parts.

They are both amazing. Not only do they change in their appearance, altering hair and clothes, but also in their behaviour, mimicry, voice, mannerisms, accents. At the beginning I found it difficult to accept that they were the same actors. Although both are Canadians for the sake of the play they adopted British accents varied by region and class from role to role. Their personalities are so different, down to small kinks and gestures. It is hard to believe they had only 3 ½ weeks to rehearse and put it all together. In the after the play interview they admitted it was hard work, however they both felt very comfortable with each other and had lots of fun.

The concept is interesting, intimate exchanges presented on the night I attended were very real; and the audience sometimes laughed and sometimes moaned recognizing "real life" in the encounters. Obviously the input of the Director had a lot to do with the final version. Good for her, good for Leah Cherniak!

The production will have closed by the time you read this. It has been a turbulent year, marked by the departure of one artistic director, and a new replacement in the middle of the season with resulting changes in the program. Hopefully from September 2007 there will be more stability and consistency in this well-established theatre.

Daryl Cloran, new Artistic Director in 2007, is proposing an interesting mix for the fall and winter. The Last Five Years (October 2007) written by Jason Robert Brown will be an opening play pondering on the changes taking place in the marriage over the five years period and told – backwards.

For the holiday season there will be A Christmas Story by Philip Grecian about a boy wishing for a perfect gift – a Red Ryder BB gun. (December 2007)

I, Claudia is a one-actor – or actress – play about puberty and how a pre-teen deals with parent’s divorce, father’s remarriage and school projects deadlines. (February 2008)

Betrayal by Harold Pinter is a play about deception, infidelity, dishonesty and how it all destroys marriage and friendship. Just one of those plays by Pinter, you know. (March - April 2008).

All of the above, including A Christmas Story, appear to be challenging plays, - not just entertainment as we know it. Mr. Cloran is certainly taking the bull by the horns and intending to put his stamp on the repertory theatre known as Theatre & Company. The prices for subscriptions have been greatly reduced. There are also some flex-passes available. We wish them all the best and looking forward to the new season with new personalities in charge.

The box office phone is 519-571-0928, website Have a great summer!


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