Local theatre start-up Red Panda Productions will use downtown Fredericton’s Christ Church Cathedral as the backdrop for its outdoor production of Camelot, July 22-25.
Red Panda Productions opens its second theatre show of the summer this week. Camelot, the popular 1960s musical by Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe, will receive five performances between July 22 and 25, including three evening performances and two afternoon matinees.
Set to take place outdoors on the grounds of the Christ Church Cathedral in downtown Fredericton, the production offers audiences a stark contrast to Red Panda’s June debut, An Ocean of Evergreens.
“For me, the shift from a straight play into a musical has actually been very easy,” said Nikki Vigneault, Red Panda’s artistic director. “The musical, for me, has been a much more seamless rehearsal process in terms of how I operate as a director. I have a lot of experience with musicals so stepping into the director role for Camelot felt like a very natural step to take.
“The challenges are vastly different, however. While I focused a lot on making An Ocean of Evergreens feel as naturalistic as possible, Camelot is all about playing it up, making sure everyone hits their mark and making the show run with smooth choreography from top to bottom. It’s been great to work on either end of the spectrum.”
The company’s production tells the tale of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table, performed by a cast of 14 actors featuring many familiar city theatre performers including Kelly McAllister, Caroline Coon, Alex Pannier and Naomi McGowan.
“Camelot has really become my baby,” said Vigneault. “I have spent so much time at this point with this script and music. It will always hold a special place in my heart, as will this cast. I can honestly say I couldn’t be happier with the amazing company we have for this show. Our three leads carry this show beautifully with a remarkable ensemble and having it all take place with the cathedral as our backdrop makes it that much more wonderful.”
With opening night just a few days away, the stage has been built, costumes have been fine tuned and tickets are on sale. Everything is ready for Thursday’s opening night performance.
“Camelot really has something in it for everyone,” said Vigneault. “There is romance, political intrigue, family feuds, and magic, all tied up in a bow with singing and an amazing score with witty lyrics. Being immersed in a live theatre show is a unique experience, one I think everyone should have.”
Red Panda Production’s Camelot runs July 22-25 at Christ Church Cathedral. Full details and ticket info can be found by visiting redpandaproductions.ca