Upcoming couple of months to be real treat for theatre lovers

Along with in-person gatherings, theatre festivals, too return to the scene

Laurie Hohlbein is the producer of the play, The Best Brothers, which is a Langley Little Theatre production. The show will be presented on May 13 at the Fraser Valley Zone Theatre Festival. (Special to Langley Advance Times)

Laurie Hohlbein is the producer of the play, The Best Brothers, which is a Langley Little Theatre production. The show will be presented on May 13 at the Fraser Valley Zone Theatre Festival. (Special to Langley Advance Times)

Langley might be on its way to becoming a hub for performing arts. As in-person gatherings return, the region is welcoming people all around Lower Mainland for theatre festivals and performances.

Fraser Valley Zone Theatre Festival

The stage is set, and the hunt is on to find Fraser Valley’s top theatre team, which will later compete with theatre groups across B.C.

Coming back for the first time since 2018, Theatre In The Country will be hosting seven teams for this year’s Fraser Valley Zone Theatre Festival.

The festival will run for seven days starting May 8, with one performance scheduled each day.

In addition to the local theatre teams of Langley Little Theatre and Theatre In The Country, groups from Chilliwack, Mission, Port Moody, Surrey, and White Rock will also participate.

At this year’s festival, Kathryn Shaw, who recently retired as the artistic director of Studio 58, will join as the adjudicator, handing out multiple awards on the final evening.

While Shaw will announce various awards that night, everybody’s eyes will be on the best production award, as that will be a ticket to the Vernon competition in July – which features the best theatre groups from across B.C., said Laurie Hohlbein, who is part of board organizing the festival.

“We are very excited and we invite people to enjoy local theatre,” Hohlbein added.

The schedule for the festival is as follows:

  1. Sunday, May 8 – Dinner With Friends by Theatre In The Country
  2. Monday, May 9 – Marjorie Prime by Chilliwack Players Guild
  3. Tuesday, May 10 – Evelyn In Purgatory by Opening Nite Theatre Society
  4. Wednesday, May 11 – Port Moddy Confidential – Glimpses by Expect Exceptional Theatre Co.
  5. Thursday, May 12 – My Blue Heaven – Pivot Theatre Society
  6. Friday, May 13 – The Best Brothers by Langley Little Theatre Society
  7. Saturday, May 14 – The Curious Incident Of The Dog in the Night-Time by White Rock Players Club

Siloam Theatre Festival returns

Langley Little Theatre is abuzz with activity this spring, including hosting several of its own productions, as well as the annual Siloam Theatre Festival.

Providing opportunities to local playwrights, the annual Siloam Theatre Festival is entering its third year after having to postpone the event twice due to COVID, with this year’s festival runs from June 2 to 11.

Featuring plays include:

  1. Cold Open: The “True” Crime Podcast Musical by Chelsea Huang
  2. Corporate Hell by Darcy J. Knopp
  3. How to Survive the Apocalypse (Without Really Dying) by Nik Trotzuk & Lauren Trotzuk
  4. Port Moody Confidential – Glimpses by C.L. Young
  5. Hang the Moon by Mahara Sinclaire

The majority of the proceeds from ticket sales will benefit the local playwrights who have written these plays – some new and others tweaked. The lineup is a mix of comedy, drama, and musical shows; hence there is something for everyone.

Trotzuk, who is returning to the Siloam festival after the two-year hiatus, is excited and honoured for her comeback as a director.

As a long-time Langley resident, Trotzuk is dedicated to finding more opportunities to bring arts and theatre to the community.

“A general lack of artistic community has really pushed me to write and create shows locally,” said the 27-years-old.

She further thanked Langley Little Theatre for sponsoring the event and creating opportunities locally.

Kailea de Leon, who has participated in the festival thrice before as an actor, will be making her debut as a playwright. Living near Gloucester, the 34-years-old renovated her garage into a studio to use it as a rehearsal space.

Talking about her neighbourhood, Leon said that it lacks a “theatre-going culture,” and it becomes hard to drum up support.

Each of the performances will be held at the Langley Little Theatre, located at 4307 200th St., in Brookswood.

Langley Little Theatre

For theatre lovers, there’s many opportunities to catch some shows this spring in Langley, including a chance this weekend in Brookswood.

Langley Little Theatre Society (remember the merger of Langley Players and Surrey Little Theatre just ahead of COVID) is bringing a limited showing of The Best Brothers, a drama by Daniel MacIvor.

The storyline for this production, being directed by Marko Hohlbein, tells the story of Bunny Best.

She has met her unfortunate end after a mishap at a Gay Days parade. Now her two sons, Kyle and Hamilton, have the task of arranging her funeral and caring for her most beloved companion, a troublesome Italian greyhound named Enzo. In the bustle of obituary-writing, eulogy-giving, and dog-sitting, sibling rivalry quickly reaches its peak and years of buried contentions surface.

This production will be Langley Little Theatre’s entry into the regional theatre competition in May. But ahead of that, the local playhouse is bringing the production to its own stage on Friday and Saturday, April 29 and 30, at 8 p.m. There will also be a Sunday matinee on May 1 at 2 p.m.

In addition to presenting The Best Brothers on the Langley Playhouse stage, Langley Little Theatre is host Chilliwack Players Guild, who will perform their latest production, Marjorie Prime, on May 6 and 7. Both those shows are at 8 p.m.

Tickets cost $25. For more information and to purchase tickets, people can visit www.langleylittletheatre.org/tickets.

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