Opera Theatre

Hamilton’s Theatre Aquarius looks ahead to Spring 2021

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It’s coming back. Not tomorrow you understand. But soon. Just when you thought doors were slammed tight, artistic director Ron Ulrich has announced an eclectic series of spring shows for Theatre Aquarius that will turn the lights on again at our resident theatre company.

Like most theatres in Canada, Aquarius has been forced shut by the pandemic.

Everything’s been on hold. But come March, COVID-19 permitting, doors will open, albeit with multiple protocols in place and limited audience attendance.

“Of course I can’t stop stressing it all depends on the COVID situation,” Ulrich said.

“These days every plan made has a cancellation option, but we’re really hoping this time things work out.

“It’s a bit scary because whenever a theatre announces plans for productions to open — and then has to cancel them — it’s distressing. People become skeptical. They begin to not believe things are actually going to happen. That fosters a feeling of mistrust. And we certainly don’t want to do that.

“We think we have an interesting lineup of shows to entice people back into theatre seats. And we will be taking all precautions to offer a safe experience.”

Ulrich realizes that some people are very cautious about coming into an auditorium, but he believes in the end that desire will trump fear.

The Aquarius spring season will open with “Wingfield’s Folly” on March 10. It runs until March 27.

Once again, Canadian actor Rod Beattie will play Bay Street rebel Walt Wingfield, a man who leaves the big city of Toronto to try his hand at farming in mythical Persephone Township. It’s a warm-hearted look at perseverance and the human ability to keep on keeping on in the face of trouble and strife.

The second show is a bold look at Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” performed by a single actor who tackles a myriad of roles. It plays April 7 until the 24th. Raoul Bhaneja’s Hamlet (solo) from Hope and Hell Theatre Company has won raves in New York at the Center Stage Theatre and at the Banff Summer Arts Festival.

It combines storytelling and the art of the one-man show. It’s been called an extraordinary piece of theatre, refreshing and rare.

Production three is a sparkling comedy by Canadian writer Michelle Riml. “Sexy Laundry” is a play that looks at sex and romance.

A married couple rediscovers themselves and their grown-stale romance in this bedroom comedy with wise and witty lines and a gentle dollop of farce. It should keep audiences laughing happily from May 12 through 29. Cast to be announced.

There are a range of prices for this series, as well as for individual shows. Subscribers are being offered first crack at tickets. Single seat sales will begin online, on the phone, and at the box office from Feb. 15.

The Johnny Cash musical “Ring of Fire,” postponed from the 2020 Aquarius season, is now scheduled to play June 16 through July 3.

Let’s hope all these theatre events take place. We desperately need to get live entertainment back and save our theatres from going under.

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For prices and further information, call the Theatre Aquarius box office 905-522-7529.

***Correction: This story was updated Jan. 4 to correct the spelling of Raoul Bhaneja’s name.