By Liz Nicholls, 12thnight.ca
At the centre of the Citadel’s upcoming Beyond The Stage series, a quartet of innovative mash-ups of theatre, music and dance, is a startling, multi-award-winning production that goes directly to the heart of trauma, shock, grief.
Betroffenheit, which has stunned audiences on both sides of the Atlantic (and garnered its creators both Olivier and Dora Awards), is the work of the internationally starry Canadian choreographer Crystal Pite, and actor/playwright Jonathon Young. And it’s spun from a real-life tragedy in the life of the latter.
The five-member Kidd Pivot/Electric Company troupe arrives on the Shoctor stage March 30, 31, and April 1, 2018. To underline its genre-defiance, Betroffenheit is jointly presented by the Citadel and the Brian Webb Dance Company.
Anais Mitchell, the New York singer-songwriter, whose folk opera album Hadestown is the source of the hit Off-Broadway musical of that name, performs at the Edmonton Folk Music Festival in August. As Hadestown is being re-fashioned for Broadway by its creators at the Citadel this fall, Mitchell returns to Edmonton. She’s at the Citadel Club Oct. 20 and 21.
The Beyond The Stage line-up also includes Freedom Singer (Oct. 25 to 29 in the Club). In this theatre documentary, Vancouver-based singer-songwriter Khari Wendall McClellan, who grew up in Detroit, chronicles, in song and speculative anecdote, the journey of his great-great-great grandmother Kizzy who escaped slavery in the U.S. and came to Canada on the Underground Railroad. The production, directed by Andrew Kushnir of Project: Humanity, was developed with the collaboration of Toronto’s Crow Theatre and Vancouver’s Urban Ink.
Old Stock: A Refugee Love Story, which premiered this year at Halifax’s 2b theatre company, is the joint creation of the award-winning playwright Hannah Moscovitch, 2b’s Christian Barry and klezmer folk artist Ben Caplan. The latter plays the emcee in this unclassifiable folktale/concert/play spun from the real-life story of Moscovitch’s great-grandparents, Romanian Jews who emigrated to Canada in the early years of the last century. It arrives May 9 to 13, 2018 in the Club.
The BTS Series packages are now on sale at the Citadel box office (780-425-1820, citadeltheatre.com). Single tickets are available Aug. 1.