Vern Thiessen is one of Canada’s most acclaimed, accomplished and produced playwrights, as well as an experienced dramaturge, director, actor, and theatre educator.
As the deadline for submissions to the 2020 NotaBle Acts Summer Theatre Festival playwriting contest draws nearer, organizers behind Fredericton’s annual theatre festival remain optimistic “the show will go on” in some way, shape or form.
A statement released on Monday outlined the important role the festival plays in developing new New Brunswick playwriting talent and further explained how, “this is work that can take place under any conditions, including the physical distancing realities now in place, and therefore will proceed no matter what happens this summer.”
With this understanding, the festival announced Vern Thiessen as its 2020 playwright/dramaturg in residence. Thiessen is one of Canada’s most acclaimed, accomplished and produced playwrights, as well as an experienced dramaturge, director, actor, and theatre educator. His work has been seen across Canada, the United States, Europe and Asia. His works include Of Human Bondage, Vimy, Einstein’s Gift (GG winner), Lenin’s Embalmers (GG finalist), Apple, and Shakespeare’s Will. He is only one of two Canadian playwrights to have had a revival of the same play at the Stratford Festival (Canada.) He has been produced off-Broadway five times. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Dora and Sterling awards for Outstanding New Play, The Carol Bolt Award, the Gwen Pharis Ringwood Award, the City of Edmonton Arts Achievement Award, the University of Alberta Alumni Award of Excellence, and the Governor General’s Literary Award for Drama, Canada’s highest honour for a playwright.
The winning playwrights of the NotaBle Acts 2020 playwriting contest will have the opportunity to further develop their work under the guidance of Thiessen leading up to the summer festival.
The contest closes April 23 with an extended deadline of May 22 for the middle and high school categories. Learn more at www.nbacts.com