HALIFAX - The Magnetic North Theatre Festival is coming to Halifax for the first time ever, bringing âsome of the best theatre in Canadaâ to town.
© Contributed/Janet Baxter
A couple spins around the dance floor during last year's Dance Marathon, a Magnetic North festival event based on Depression-era dance contests where the last duo moving on the floor wins. Dance Marathon will be at the Olympic Community Hall in Halifax from June 25-28, 7-9 p.m.
Canadaâs only national theatre festival, based in Ottawa, travels to a different city every two years and artistic director Brenda Leadlay said her team has had a great experience working with partner Eastern Front Theatre for the June 19 to 29 event.
âIt is some of the best theatre in Canada, it is âŠ something for everybody,â Leadlay said Wednesday.
âPeople wanting to âŠ see theatre that can somehow affect them on a deeper level and hopefully change lives in the big picture.â
There will be 13 shows across Halifax and Dartmouth, the most ever, thanks to Eastern Front shows like the Mermaid Theatreâs new Stella, Queen of the Snow, or Pop- Up Love Party.
For first-time theatre fans, Leadlay recommended the Broken Sex Doll â if they are âup for naughtiness.â
âItâs very, very funny,â Leadlay said about the play focused on what it will be like when humans use robots for sex.
Leadlay said Iceland is another highlight, about the economic meltdown of 2008. A good story, mystery, and âfine actingâ made it one of Leadlayâs favourites.
For those who donât like sitting in a dark theatre, Leadlay said to check out The National Elevator Project, or The Tale of a Town Nova Scotia where a team travelled around the province collecting stories to present with music.
Dance Marathon is a fun event where anyone can register and compete in an old-school contest where the last person moving on the floor wins, Leadlay said.
Stephen OâConnell of bluemouth inc., the company presenting Dance Marathon, said local dancers in the audience will break out into choreography throughout the night, and prizes are given away for best-dressed couple.
âYouâre not being put on stage âŠ itâs more just the event and things reveal themselves around you,â OâConnell said.
âSuddenly the YMCA song comes on and you have 200 people euphorically doing the Village People dance, then people donât want to sit down.â
For a complete lineup of events and more information, go to magneticnorthfestival.ca
Magnetic North show listings:Broken Sex Doll: June 20-24.Two in the Coop: June 20, 22When it Rains: June 22-24Who Killed Spalding Gray? June 24-25, 27-28Huff: June 23, 25-28LEAR: June 21-24wag: June 19-22Stella, Queen of the Snow: June 21-22Pop-Up Love Party: June 23-25Iceland: June 24-25Tale of a Town N.S.: June 24-28The National Elevator Project: June 22-25Dance Marathon: June 25-28.A sampling of free Magnetic Encounters:Free Oval roller skating party: June 21Rich Aucoin keynote speech: June 22Companies pitch shows to international agents: June 24Poker night: June 26