The best thing about cultural treasure hunting is finding a real jewel – like the world-renowned Shaw Festival. One of Canada’s best theatre experiences is right here in our own backyard!
For the past 50 seasons, The Shaw has been presenting world-class live theatre in Niagara-on-the-Lake and welcoming guests from every province in Canada and every state in the United States – not to mention some European stragglers! The Festival’s namesake, Bernard Shaw, was a Nobel prize-winning playwright passionately committed to the cause of social justice, to the eradication of poverty, to equal opportunity for women and men, and to the importance of theatre as a means of promoting such causes through humour and reason. The Shaw now produces ten plays each season in their four theatre spaces. The plays chosen are not just by Bernard Shaw, but by playwrights, both living and dead, who wrote with the same spirit and passion.. This means you can see plays by Shaw and Noel Coward or modern playwrights like Suzanne-Lori Parks or Carol Frechette all in the same season. The acting and production values are often better than you’ll find on Broadway, Stratford or in England’s West End theatre district.
The Shaw’s 50th season began in early April and runs until the end of October, so there is still time to catch the smash hit My Fair Lady! Directed by American director Molly Smith, one of North America’s premier directors of classical musical theatre, My Fair Lady is based on Shaw’s dramatic comedy Pygmalion. Molly Smith has taken this iconic masterpiece and, with the help of designers Ken Macdonald and Judith Bowden, turned it on its head. This isn’t the Audrey Hepburn-inspired My Fair Lady, but a fresh, energy-filled, funny musical that has been charming audiences and critics alike all season long. You’ll definitely fall in love with Eliza’s indomitable spirit and character brought to life by actor Deborah Hay. There are great seats still available all within various price ranges, so it’s best to check out the availability online at www.shawfest.com or call the box office at 1-800-511-SHAW (7429). Hurry! October 30th will be here soon enough, so don’t miss this extraordinary 50th season at The Shaw!