GCTC taps into young audiences with new and improved Education & Learning Programs | www.gctc.ca

GCTC taps into young audiences with new and improved Education & Learning Programs


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - OTTAWA August 23, 2017 – With the debut of their new 2017-18 season on the horizon, the Great Canadian Theatre Company is unveiling their fully-formed Education & Learning Programs that puts the focus on students and teachers. Serving as an introduction to professional Canadian theatre, an engaging enhancement to curriculum content, and much more, the Education & Learning Programs provide unique opportunities to use theatre to engage and inspire young minds.


GCTC Education Services Manager, Catherine Ballachey, is excited about the new audiences the company will be reaching through the initiatives. “We've been dreaming up ways to open our building to the community, and we've come up with a whole range of experiences for everyone from babies to university students. It's going to be something new every day, and I can't wait to meet all the new people that will come through our doors!"


Weekday matinees will be available for 6 plays this season and are specially designed for student groups. The matinees include post-show talkbacks, as well as the opportunity to tour the backstage of GCTC. Evening bookings are also available for student and community groups. Two productions appearing on GCTC’s stages this season will be specifically for young audiences: Young People Theatre’s One Thing Leads to Another (a whimsical show specifically for infants and toddlers) and Green Thumb Theatre’s Still/Falling (a riveting look at how depression and anxiety affect the lives of young people).  


GCTC’s successful after-school youth group, The Hive @ GCTC will return for a second year. Designed to introduce high school and university students to the inner workings of GCTC and the Ottawa theatre community, The Hive @ GCTC offers exclusive access to monthly events and workshops with theatre professionals. Workshops are free of charge and students are offered the discount rate of $15 to attend our shows. Information about other opportunities in the Ottawa theatre community is also a part of The Hive @ GCTC, when you become a member.


Below is the schedule of 2017-18 student matinees and workshops for The Hive:




You Are Happy: Determined to help her brother find some kind of happiness, Bridget searches grocery stores looking for his potential wife. A dark comedy about millennial love, sibling loyalty, conformity and an uncomfortably close shave.


Perfect for grades 11-12


Student Matinee:  Wednesday, October 4th, 2017 at noon


Ordinary Days: This contemporary musical is for anyone who’s ever struggled to appreciate the simple things in a complex situation. It’s about embracing change and choosing hope in the Big Apple.


Perfect for grades 9-12

Student Matinees: Wednesday, November 8th, 2017 at noon and Wednesday, November 15th, 2017 at noon


Young People’s Theatre’s One Thing Leads to Another: One Thing Leads to Another is the culmination of two years of research by Maja Ardal. She has consumed textbooks full of infant developmental research and, in rehearsal, we have played more games of peek-a-boo with each other than you can imagine. Along the way we have tried to distill an enormous amount of academia into play-based scenarios that will provoke, stimulate and entertain our young audience.


Age Range: 3 to 24 months


A Collective Collaboration by Maja Ardal, Audrey Dwyer, Mary Francis Moore and Julia Tribe

Developed from the original concept, research and theme by Maja Ardal


March 7-11, 2018 at 10am and 1pm

How Black Mothers Say I Love You: Starting a better life in Canada is a dream for many immigrants, but for Daphne the decision presents an unthinkable sacrifice. This is a story of separation and reconciliation infused with a bold original score that blends gospel, reggae and R&B with classical music.


Perfect for grades 10-12


Student matinee: Wednesday, March 21st, 2018 at noon


Green Thumb Theatre’s Still/Falling

Still/Falling tells the story of Nina. Nina has a great life. She loves her family, she does well in school, and her friends are awesome. But suddenly Nina starts feeling… off, and she finds herself slipping into a dark reality she cannot understand, let alone articulate to the people around her. Still/Falling follows Nina as she tries to come to terms with what it means to struggle with anxiety and depression, and to rise above it with as much strength, and as few scars, as possible.


Perfect for grades 8-12


Student matinee: Tuesday, April 3, 2018 at 10am and Wednesday, April 4, 2018 at 1pm


Gracie: Gracie’s world is full of faith and family, but as a fifteen year-old in a polygamous community, she feels increasing pressure to conform. With deep empathy and compassion, the playwright takes us into young Gracie’s world, where we discover what it’s like to grow up in an uncommon environment...


Perfect for grades 9-12


Student matinee: Wednesday, May 9th, 2018 at noon




Wednesday, September 27th: Theatre Criticism in the Digital Age with GCTC Resident Critic and co-founder of New Ottawa Critics, Brianna McFarlane

Wednesday, October 18th: Lighting Design with Ordinary Days Lighting Designer, Seth Gerry

Wednesday, November 15th: Musical Theatre with Ordinary Days Music Director, Wendy Berkelaar

Wednesday, December 6th: Introduction to Improv with Canadian Improv Games Board Chair, Hugh Neilson



To book a student group for any show or to become a member of The Hive @ GCTC, please contact GCTC’s Education Services Manager Catherine Ballachey at education@gctc.ca.



GCTC celebrates its 43nd season in 2017–18. We continue to foster, produce and promote excellent theatre that provokes examination of Canadian life and our place in the world. Now in the middle of a 3-year strategic plan, GCTC aims to increase the diversity on it stages, diversify its audiences and deepen their experience. GCTC also continues to embrace artistic risk and to ensure a wide range of theatrical experiences.




For more information or to arrange interviews, contact:

Andrew Soobrian

Marketing and Communications Manager

Great Canadian Theatre Company


613-236-5192 ext. 229