Curtain will rise for Dundas Little Theatre, but public performances are still months away

Community May 04, 2021 by Cara Nickerson Ancaster News

The curtain was set to go up on Dundas Little Theatre’s rendition of Verdict, a play by Agatha Christie, on April 26, 2020. However, thanks to COVID-19, production was shut down in March and has yet to be brought to the stage.

Theatre treasurer, Peter Lloyd, said they initially assumed production would be stalled for a few months at the most.

“We’re sitting here now, looking at a year’s anniversary of the cancellation of that show,” he said.

No one from the theatre has been able to enter the building since the first lockdown, making it like a time capsule. The ticket booth window is still advertising shows from the winter of 2020, and inside, the half-built sets have been left to gather dust.

The theatre plans on running Verdict, and the rest of the now postponed 2020-21 season, when pandemic restrictions are lifted. The actress playing Verdict’s lead character, Rebecca Durance Hine, said she will play her character, Lisa Koletzky, differently than she would have before the pandemic.

“If your perspective has changed, then yeah, the way you look at things is going to change,” Durance Hine said. “This has been a pretty life-altering, reality-shattering event for me … so I think that’s another layer I’m going to bring.”

She said community theatre has been an escape for her during hard times. In 2017, she was diagnosed with breast cancer and said that her illness reignited her passion for acting. She is now in remission, and Dundas Little Theatre was the first stage she returned to during her recovery.

“We don’t necessarily have as much time as we think we are going to have and we need to do the things we want to do when we can do them.”

Durance Hine has been able to find film acting gigs over the lockdown, but she said that without a live audience, there isn’t the same connection to the community.

“Theatre is so immediate and visceral; it’s not like watching a movie,” Durance Hine said.

The missing connection isn’t just between the performers and the audience, but between the cast and the crew as well. The community members who volunteer their time to Dundas Little Theatre do it as a labour of love.

“Community theatre, you’re not really getting any kind of monetary compensation,” Durance Hine said. “Everyone who’s there doing it because they really love to do it.”

For now, the theatre has had to divert money it had set aside to upgrade the building in order to pay its utility bills and insurance. Lloyd said the theatre will still be around when indoor events return, but it won’t be unscarred by extended closure.

“We don’t have the capital reserves to upgrade lighting,” Lloyd said. “The place will be a little darker.”

Curtain will rise for Dundas Little Theatre, but post-pandemic performances are still months away

'We’re sitting here now, looking at a year’s anniversary of the cancellation of that show.'

Community May 04, 2021 by Cara Nickerson Ancaster News

The curtain was set to go up on Dundas Little Theatre’s rendition of Verdict, a play by Agatha Christie, on April 26, 2020. However, thanks to COVID-19, production was shut down in March and has yet to be brought to the stage.

Theatre treasurer, Peter Lloyd, said they initially assumed production would be stalled for a few months at the most.

“We’re sitting here now, looking at a year’s anniversary of the cancellation of that show,” he said.

No one from the theatre has been able to enter the building since the first lockdown, making it like a time capsule. The ticket booth window is still advertising shows from the winter of 2020, and inside, the half-built sets have been left to gather dust.

Related Content

The theatre plans on running Verdict, and the rest of the now postponed 2020-21 season, when pandemic restrictions are lifted. The actress playing Verdict’s lead character, Rebecca Durance Hine, said she will play her character, Lisa Koletzky, differently than she would have before the pandemic.

“If your perspective has changed, then yeah, the way you look at things is going to change,” Durance Hine said. “This has been a pretty life-altering, reality-shattering event for me … so I think that’s another layer I’m going to bring.”

She said community theatre has been an escape for her during hard times. In 2017, she was diagnosed with breast cancer and said that her illness reignited her passion for acting. She is now in remission, and Dundas Little Theatre was the first stage she returned to during her recovery.

“We don’t necessarily have as much time as we think we are going to have and we need to do the things we want to do when we can do them.”

Durance Hine has been able to find film acting gigs over the lockdown, but she said that without a live audience, there isn’t the same connection to the community.

“Theatre is so immediate and visceral; it’s not like watching a movie,” Durance Hine said.

The missing connection isn’t just between the performers and the audience, but between the cast and the crew as well. The community members who volunteer their time to Dundas Little Theatre do it as a labour of love.

“Community theatre, you’re not really getting any kind of monetary compensation,” Durance Hine said. “Everyone who’s there doing it because they really love to do it.”

For now, the theatre has had to divert money it had set aside to upgrade the building in order to pay its utility bills and insurance. Lloyd said the theatre will still be around when indoor events return, but it won’t be unscarred by extended closure.

“We don’t have the capital reserves to upgrade lighting,” Lloyd said. “The place will be a little darker.”

Curtain will rise for Dundas Little Theatre, but post-pandemic performances are still months away

'We’re sitting here now, looking at a year’s anniversary of the cancellation of that show.'

Community May 04, 2021 by Cara Nickerson Ancaster News

The curtain was set to go up on Dundas Little Theatre’s rendition of Verdict, a play by Agatha Christie, on April 26, 2020. However, thanks to COVID-19, production was shut down in March and has yet to be brought to the stage.

Theatre treasurer, Peter Lloyd, said they initially assumed production would be stalled for a few months at the most.

“We’re sitting here now, looking at a year’s anniversary of the cancellation of that show,” he said.

No one from the theatre has been able to enter the building since the first lockdown, making it like a time capsule. The ticket booth window is still advertising shows from the winter of 2020, and inside, the half-built sets have been left to gather dust.

Related Content

The theatre plans on running Verdict, and the rest of the now postponed 2020-21 season, when pandemic restrictions are lifted. The actress playing Verdict’s lead character, Rebecca Durance Hine, said she will play her character, Lisa Koletzky, differently than she would have before the pandemic.

“If your perspective has changed, then yeah, the way you look at things is going to change,” Durance Hine said. “This has been a pretty life-altering, reality-shattering event for me … so I think that’s another layer I’m going to bring.”

She said community theatre has been an escape for her during hard times. In 2017, she was diagnosed with breast cancer and said that her illness reignited her passion for acting. She is now in remission, and Dundas Little Theatre was the first stage she returned to during her recovery.

“We don’t necessarily have as much time as we think we are going to have and we need to do the things we want to do when we can do them.”

Durance Hine has been able to find film acting gigs over the lockdown, but she said that without a live audience, there isn’t the same connection to the community.

“Theatre is so immediate and visceral; it’s not like watching a movie,” Durance Hine said.

The missing connection isn’t just between the performers and the audience, but between the cast and the crew as well. The community members who volunteer their time to Dundas Little Theatre do it as a labour of love.

“Community theatre, you’re not really getting any kind of monetary compensation,” Durance Hine said. “Everyone who’s there doing it because they really love to do it.”

For now, the theatre has had to divert money it had set aside to upgrade the building in order to pay its utility bills and insurance. Lloyd said the theatre will still be around when indoor events return, but it won’t be unscarred by extended closure.

“We don’t have the capital reserves to upgrade lighting,” Lloyd said. “The place will be a little darker.”