Central Okanagan Foundation grant aids UBCO performance students

Theatre productions at Rotary Centre for the Arts enabled by $15,000 donation.

UBC performance students will again offer a series of public performances in downtown Kelowna and at the University Theatre on campus, thanks in large part to a $15,000 grant from the Central Okanagan Foundation.

Theatre26, a group of promotion students at UBC Okanagan supervised by faculty, will present five professional theatre productions in Kelowna: At the Rotary Centre, the Kelowna Community Theatre and the University Theatre over the upcoming academic year.

“This gift from the Central Okanagan Foundation enables us to provide this community experience and value-added educational opportunity by allowing us to pay for productions over the upcoming theatre season,” said Neil Cadger, associate professor in the interdisciplinary performance program in the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies.

Over the past year and a half, Theatre26 has mounted five professional performances in the Mary Irwin Theatre at the Rotary Centre for the Arts through a grant from UBC.

“Now we have another season assured where we can showcase our students’ work and bring in companies and individual performers that add to the cultural vibrancy of the Okanagan,” said Cadger. “We are deeply interested in reaching out and involving the local community with a long-term goal of creating a sustainable, and more robust live-performance industry.”

Bruce Davies, executive director of the Central Okanagan Foundation, said the Foundation recognizes Theatre26 as a viable arts company that enhances the art and cultural offerings in the Okanagan.

“The Central Okanagan Foundation is pleased to support UBC’s promotion of home-grown theatre and dance productions by increasing the availability of performances of eclectic, unconventional and innovative entertainment,” said Davies. “This program provides UBC students, grade school students and local theatre and dance audiences with exposure to high quality, live, contemporary performances.”

The proposed lineup of UBC performances supported by the Central Okanagan Foundation grant for 2014-15 includes:

· Sunday Service Improv Comedy (Vancouver), September 2014

· Butt Kapinski, Deanna Fleysher (Los Angeles), October 2014

· It’s going to get worse and worse and worse my friend, Lisbeth Gruwez (Belgium), January 2015

· Marooned, Aron De Casmaker and Jesse Buck (United Kingdom), February 2015

· Winner and Losers, Theatre Replacement & New World Theatre (Vancouver), March 2015

Theatre26 won bronze in the Best of Kelowna 2014 promotion category for theatre groups.

UBC’s ‘start an evolution’ campaign has raised $84 million to date in the Okanagan.