Seasonal returns: High Tea and the Theatre 6-Pack

High Tea, Firefly Theatre & Circus. Photo supplied.

By Liz Nicholls, 12thnight.ca

Let no one argue that Firefly Theatre & Circus doesn’t take the high road.

With the return of their annual High Tea Sunday, Firefly takes vertical integration literally, and tea-time to dizzy new heights. You can never really get jaded about receiving a nice cuppa or a glass of bubbly from above. Like manna from heaven.

Anyhow, in addition to treats (from Duchess Bake Shop) and special tea (Acquired Tastes Tea Co), there’s a sneak preview of Kolabo, Firefly’s upcoming theatrical collaboration with Kita No Taiko, the Japanese drumming troupe (slated for a February opening). Ponder, for a moment, the aerial possibilities in that partnership.

Meanwhile your servers will be flying in. And you’ll see a variety of aerialists at work if you look up. Bonus: Stephanie Wolfe of the Spirit Sisters of the Flying Séance will read your tea leaves.

High Tea, hosted by Firefly artistic director Annie Dugan, is at the ATB Financial Arts Barns (10330 84 Ave.) Sunday, 2 to 4 p.m. Tickets: TIX on the Square (780-420-1757, tixonthesquare.ca), fireflytheatre.com, 780-758-9999.

•Edmonton theatre is a repository of bright ideas (think Fringe). One of the brightest of them all, and a bargain to boot at $125, is the Theatre 6-Pack, a sampler cross-section of the season: six productions from six different theatres.

The first of them — the Teatro La Quindicina revival of Stewart Lemoine’s Shocker’s Delight — opens next week — so time is running out.

What’s in this year’s six-pack?

Shocker’s Delight: Ron Pederson, who was in this elegant 1993 comedy in a 2004 revival, makes his Teatro La Quindicina directing debut in the production that runs September 18 to Oct. 14 at the Varscona Theatre. His cast includes Ben Stevens, Melanie Piatocha and Richard Lee Hsi.

John Ware Reimagined: The play by Calgary-based Cheryl Foggo chronicles the improbable true story of the man who went from American slave to Canadian icon. Workshop West’s production, Nov. 8 to 18, is directed by Kevin Hendricks. 

Shatter: Trina Davies’ play is set against the backdrop of the Halifax explosion of 1917, and probes the impact of the tragedy on the hopes and dreams of its characters. The Walterdale Theatre production runs Dec. 6 to 16.

Julien Arnold, Reed McColm in Slumberland Motel. Photo by Marc J Chalifoux photography 2017

Slumberland Motel: Shadow Theatre premieres this Collin Doyle play about the changing fortunes of two down-at-heels vacuum cleaner salesmen on the road. Their lives are transformed by the arrival of a mystery woman. John Hudson’s production runs at the Varscona Jan. 17 to Feb. 4.

Do This In Memory of Me/ En Mémoire De Moi is a Northern Light Theatre/ L’UniThéâtre co-production of a new Cat Walsh play, set in the Montreal of 1963, when altar boys were never girls. Twelve-year-old Geneviève is hoping for a re-consideration by the Almighty. Trevor Schmidt’s production runs at La Cité francophone March 13 to 25, in alternating English and French performances.

The School for Scandal: Richard Sheridan’s witty Restoration comedy of manners is directed at the U of A’s Studio Theatre by Jennifer Tarver. It runs at the Timms Centre for the Arts March 29 to April 7.

Theatre 6-Packs are available at TIX on the Square (780-420-1757, tixonthesquare.ca).

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