Fonds - Catalyst Theatre fonds

Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

Catalyst Theatre fonds

General material designation

Parallel title

Other title information

Title statements of responsibility

Title notes

Level of description

Fonds

Reference code

Edition area

Edition statement

Edition statement of responsibility

Statement of scale (cartographic)

Statement of projection (cartographic)

Statement of coordinates (cartographic)

Statement of scale (architectural)

Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)

Dates of creation area

Date(s)

Physical description area

Physical description

Publisher's series area

Title proper of publisher's series

Parallel titles of publisher's series

Other title information of publisher's series

Statement of responsibility relating to publisher's series

Numbering within publisher's series

Note on publisher's series

Archival description area

Name of creator

Administrative history

The Catalyst Theatre was incorporated in 1978, but began from Theatre for Social Action projects directed by David Barnet in the Drama Department of the University of Alberta. One such piece, entitled Drinks before Dinner (1977), caught the attention of the Alberta Alcoholism and Addiction Commission and the commission funded a provincial tour of the piece. Soon other social agencies began to make inquiries, and Catalyst Theatre was formed, with Barnet the acting part-time artistic coordinator. In 1979, Jan Selman, a M.F.A. grad from Alberta, was hired to be Catalyst's first full- time artistic director. Catalyst's stated objectives from the outset were to 'promote and practice the use of theatre for public education and as a catalyst for social action.' Topics explored under this mandate included alcoholism and drug abuse, juvenile crime, spouse abuse, poverty and teen suicide. Plays were performed in whatever space the sponsors or tour location had available. In 1985, Ruth Smillie replaced Jan Selman as artistic director. During Smillie's tenure Catalyst moved away from producing pieces for social agencies and began to pursue projects of its own choosing. In 1990, Catalyst, for the first time acquired its own performance space in the Edmonton neighbourhood of Garneau. The new performance space, though small, became known for its experiments in cabaret theatre. During Smillie's tenure, the theatre also developed the Takwakin project featuring the writing and direction of Floyd Favel. Favel's works All my Relations (1990) and Lady of Silences and Requiem (1992) featured all-Native casts and sought to develop new images of and for the contemporary native. Smillie resigned in early 1996 and was succeeded by the directing tandem of Joey Tremblay and Jonathan Cristenson. To cut costs, they moved Catalyst into a converted warehouse at 8523- 103 St., and revised the objective of Catalyst to focus on theatrical innovation instead of social change. The new commitment was to 'creating original Canadian work that explores new possibilities for the theatrical art form and the process through which it was created,' to 'exposing work nationally and internationally', and to 'challenging the artists and audiences who participate in the creation of that work.'

Name of creator

Biographical history

Director, Actor, Playwright. Jane Heather completed her B.A. at the University of Alberta in 1975 and has performed, directed and written for both social action/community based theatre and conventional theatre. She has worked with a variety of communities including prison inmates, survivors of domestic violence, union women, aboriginal groups, and at risk youth on such issues as privatization, poverty, addictions and social change. Her works include 'Are We There Yet?' a play for teens about sexual decision making and 'Beloved Community' which contrasts ideological change through time by analyzing the relationship of an activist mother and her activist daughter on the eve of the G-8 conference in Kananaskis. In 1993, Ms. Heather received her M.F.A. (with distinction) from the University of Alberta. Additionally, Ms. Heather has also contributed to the development of theatre in Alberta through her work as a sessional instructor in the department of drama at the University of Alberta. At the U. of A., Ms. Heather has taught courses in or about: Improvisation, Directing, Collective Creation, Community-based Theatre, Feminist Theatre, Popular Theatre.

Custodial history

Scope and content

Notes area

Physical condition

Immediate source of acquisition

Arrangement

Language of material

Script of material

Location of originals

Availability of other formats

Restrictions on access

Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication

Finding aids

Associated materials

Related materials

Accruals

Alternative identifier(s)

Standard number

Access points

Subject access points

Place access points

Name access points

Genre access points

Control area

Description record identifier

Institution identifier

AEU

Rules or conventions

Status

Level of detail

Dates of creation, revision and deletion

Language of description

Script of description

Sources

Accession area

Related subjects

Related people and organizations

Related places

Related genres