Bard to Broadway Theatre Society may stage shows outdoors next summer. (PQB News photo file)

Bard to Broadway Theatre Society may stage shows outdoors next summer. (PQB News photo file)

Qualicum Beach’s Bard to Broadway group may stage shows outdoors

Theatre society plans smaller productions due to ongoing pandemic

Bard to Broadway Theatre Society may take their performances outdoors next summer.

Due to COVID-19, the society had to look for alternative places to stage their shows, which they normally hold at the Village Theatre in Qualicum Beach.

B2B’s artistic director Gary Brown said they prefer to be at the Village Theatre but have no choice if no vaccines will be forthcoming next year. They are worried their patrons, many of which are seniors who may find it uncomfortable to go and watch the shows indoors.

“We’re trying to cover all our bases because we want to do something next year,” said Brown. “We’re in limbo like every other theatre company. We don’t know where we’re going to go.”

The society has approached the Town of Qualicum Beach for assistance and council has directed staff to work with the group, to explore options to utilize town-owned land for the society’s performance season.

Brown indicated they looked at two locations, the former Qualicum Beach Elementary School and the amphitheatre behind the Qualicum Beach Civic Centre.

“We really do not want to be outside because it comes with a whole lot of difficulties, especially if it rains,” said Brown. “But we need to have alternatives.”

READ MORE: Prince Harry and Meghan sign production deal with Netflix

After suffering significant losses when they had to cancel shows last summer, Brown said it’s important for B2B to continue performing and to let the community know that they’re still around.

“We haven’t done anything since 2019 when we did ‘Hairspray’ and two other shows,” said Brown. “Arts groups and theatre groups don’t make a lot of money. We’re in a situation at the moment where there is absolutely no income.”

B2B is a small group but still has ongoing expenditures that include paying for the warehouse for their set buildings and props. They also pay royalties for the shows that they produce.

“Just like any theatre group, you’re basically living on ticket sales and without ticket sales, you’re kind of hooped,” said Brown.

“It really puts us in a difficult position.”

Brown said they would only be allowed to have 50 people regardless of whether the shows are held indoors or outdoors, due to COVID-19 protocols.

“It might just be enough to break even,” said Brown.

B2B can’t stage a major production at this time.

They were geared to perform a Broadway musical last summer, ‘A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder’ that required an orchestra with singers and dancers. It had to be cancelled due to the pandemic. It cost the society $10,000 for the licence for the show.

“So they’re sitting on that money of ours but they’ve allowed us to postpone the show until next year possibly but if we can only have 50 people in the audience, then we can’t even afford that show,” said Brown. We’ve looked at alternatives which are cheaper to produce. If we’re outdoors, we certainly can’t have big sets with big lighting and all those other things. So we can try to keep our expenses as low as possible.”

What is being planned this coming summer includes a one-woman play comedy ‘Just The Ticket,’ ‘Crimes of the Heart,’ and a Broadway revue.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter 

Artsqualicum beachTheatre

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Nanaimo author Haley Healey recently launched her second book, ‘Flourishing and Free: More Stories of Trailblazing Women of Vancouver Island.’ (Photo courtesy Kristin Wenberg)
Nanaimo author pens second book on ‘trailblazing’ Vancouver Island women

Haley Healey’s ‘Flourishing and Free’ follows her 2020 debut ‘On Their Own Terms’

Saanich author Hannalora Leavitt hopes her new book, This Disability Experience, helps to dispel the ‘otherness’ that often surrounds people with disabilities. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)
Vancouver Island author demystifying disability and dismantling otherness

Hannalora Leavitt, who lives with a visual impairment, wants to change how people look at disability

Michael Demers, performing here as a member of The Lonely, died May 1 after a year-long battle with leukemia. (Photo by Benji Duke)
Victoria music community mourning Michael Demers

Veteran singer-songwriter, co-founder of The Lonely dies at 63 due to leukemia

The Royal B.C. Museum has added a tamba dining set, used by a Punjabi man on his voyage to Canada in 1927, to its ‘100 Objects of Interest’ online collection. (Courtesy of Royal B.C. Museum)
Punjabi dining set added to Royal B.C. Museum’s ‘100 Objects of Interest’ collection

Set used by Indar Singh Gill on his voyage from Punjab to Canada in 1927

Victoria-born musician Bryce Dane Soderberg took to Instagram Monday to call out the Greater Victoria School District on its proposed cuts to elementary and middle school music programs. (Bryce Dane Soderberg/Instagram)
Victoria-born Lifehouse vocalist calls out SD61 on proposed music cuts

‘It will be a big loss to future generations’ Bryce Dane Soderberg posted to his Instagram

Musqueam and Qualicum First Nations artist, Mathew Andreatta, next to several of his ongoing projects, including carvings and illustrations. (Submitted photo)
Island artist considers art a means to reconnect with his Indigenous identity

Andreatta thought of TOSH as a space of learning and creation

Nicolle Nattrass and Michael Armstrong are presenting an online reading on May 9. (Photos courtesy Joni Marcolin/Heather Armstrong)
Nanaimo playwrights present online Mother’s Day script readings

Nicolle Nattrass and Michael Armstrong to read from in-progress plays

Marianne Turley is one of this year’s City of Nanaimo Culture and Heritage Award winners for Honour in Culture. (Bulletin file photo)
Longtime Vancouver Island Symphony board member gets posthumous culture award

Marianne Turley receives City of Nanaimo Culture and Heritage Award for Honour in Culture

The CVAC Fine Arts Show is always something to see and 2021 promises to be no different, as they adopt a fully multimedia approach. (File photo)
Cowichan Valley Fine Arts Show goes multimedia for 2021

The show, which runs from May 1-22 will be available both in person and online.

Dinner After a Death, a painting by Sooke artist Bryan Cathcart is part of a collection featuring his work at the Outsiders and Others Gallery in Vancouver. (Contributed - Bryan Cathcart)
Sooke artist finds creativity by expanding artistic horizons

Bryan Cathcart, 26, featured at Vancouver gallery

Viking-inspired fantasy writer Joshua Gillingham of Nanaimo and Seattle-based Islamic science fiction editor Muhammad Aurangzeb Ahmad are co-editing ‘Althingi – The Crescent and the Northern Star.’ (Photos submitted, illustration by Lada Shustova/Figue)
Nanaimo author co-editing historical anthology connecting Vikings and Muslims

Joshua Gilligham presents ‘Althingi – The Crescent and the Northern Star’

Saltair-based writer, Krista May. (Janet Kelly photo)
Island writers make long-list for 2021 CBC Short Story Prize

Krista May and Angie Ellis among 33 finalists selected out of over 3,000 entrants

Most Read