Centre Stage – City Theatre Needs to Work Together

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In our new series Centre Stage, Grid City asks Fredericton theatre personalities to help shed some light on the city’s vibrant theatre scene.  This week we hear from Next Folding Theatre Company’s Artistic Producer Ryan Griffith.

ryan_griffithWhat’s your favourite city performance venue?

The Black Box Theatre at St. Thomas University, due to its versatility and technical capabilities.

Tell us about one production you caught over the past year that stuck with you.

I was very struck by the production of Hamlet I saw in Odell Park, produced by NotaBle Acts.  I thought it was a great choice to give the audience the option of following either Laertes’ or Hamlet’s story arc.

With a few companies rolling out their coming seasons, what upcoming production is on your radar as a must-see?

I must see Theatre New Brunswick’s adaptation of A Christmas Carol.  I’m a fan of Charles Dickens and enjoy witnessing the process of adaptation.

Producing a play for the stage presents a number of unique and exciting challenges. Which aspect of production do you enjoy the most?

Personally, I enjoy all aspect of production about the same.  Each one provides its own challenges, its own headaches, and its own satisfaction.  Putting the finishing touches on a final draft of a script and seeing a play go up onstage for the first time ever are very similar experiences for me.

For a small city, Fredericton has a great variety of theatre happening with each of the several companies representing a unique aspect of the city’s theatre scene.  What’s one major challenge you feel every company faces in producing theatre in Fredericton?

Working together.  Learning how to work together and support each other.  All of our fates are linked.  We’re all growing this industry together.  The health of the industry is something we need to focus on as much as the health of our own companies.  Maybe that sounds weird, but it’s actually true.

Ryan Griffith is Next Folding Theatre Company‘s Artistic Producer.   The company is dedicated to producing theatrical works created by new and emerging Canadian artists. He is an active member of PARC (Playwright’s Atlantic Resource Centre), a director, a playwright, screenwriter and a graduate of the National Theatre School of Canada.  

Next Folding Theatre Company kick off their 2014-2015 season with their annual Creative Collaboration, November 23-25, 2014 at Wilser’s Room. Check www.nextfolding.ca for more information in the coming weeks.

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