Kelowna Summer Theatre Festival

After their inaugural launch in 2012 the Kelowna Summer Theatre Festival will once again be adding to our theatre options in Kelowna by presenting two contemporary plays this summer at an outdoor stage at the RCA in July and August.

Its tough to summarize just how much work has gone into making this production possible but here are some quick hits before we share the specifics about the shows:

– Kelowna Summer Theatre Festival used to be called Viva Musica. The new name and new focus came about after a soul searching year of market research and strategic planning in 2011 on how they could continue to offer Kelowna a professional theatre option.

– Artistic director Neal Facey, recently retired from his role of drama teacher at the Kelowna Secondary School, spend numerous days auditioning young performers to find the perfect actors to play a role in the shows he had chosen. In talking with him earlier this year he was blown away by the number of applicants that took part in the audition process. Only one in ten that auditioned actually got a part.

– Last year was their first year and although it provided a good foundation the numbers weren’t were everyone hoped. That said most event planners know it takes years to build up awareness and appitite for a new series so its great to seem them not only moving forward but expanding this year with DarkDaysLive.

After watching the story of Ballett Kelowna unfold this spring there’s an understanding that having the support of the market/community is essential for any arts organisation. If you want to continue to see professional theatre in Kelowna where the emerging actors are paid for their time to entertain you then I’ve got a simple suggestion.
Buy a ticket for your friends and family coming into town this summer from their site:

The shows this year are:

Title of Show

Jeff and Hunter, two struggling writers, hear about a new musical theatre festival. However, the deadline for submissions is a mere three weeks away. With nothing to lose, the pair decides to try to create something new with the help of their friends Susan, Heidi and another Heidi on the eighty-eights. With the cast in place, Jeff and Hunter begin a conversation about what to write about. Eventually, Jeff suggests they write about what to write about. They make a pact to write up until the festival’s deadline and dream about the show changing their lives. [title of show]—taken from the space on the festival’s application form which asks for the [title of show]—follows Hunter and Jeff and their friends on their journey through the gauntlet of creative self-expression. In the span of 90 minutes they write and perform their show at the festival and learn lessons about themselves as people, friends and artists. [title of show] is, above all, a love letter to the musical theatre and to the joy of collaboration. The musical received a Tony Award® nomination for Best Book of a Musical in 2009.

Private Eyes

In his intricate comedy Private Eyes, playwright Steven Dietz starts with a theater convention—the backstage romantic triangle—then adds so many lies, secrets and surprises that the characters can barely keep their footing on reality’s shifting sands. It’s a tricky balancing act for the audience, too. Private Eyes is a comedy of suspicion in which nothing is ever quite what it seems. Matthew’s wife, Lisa, is having an affair with Adrian, a British theatre director. Or perhaps the affair is part of the play being rehearsed. Or perhaps Matthew has imagined all of it simply to have something to report to Frank, his therapist. And, finally, there is Cory—the mysterious woman who seems to shadow the others—who brings the story to its surprising conclusion. Or does she? The audience itself plays the role of detective in this hilarious “relationship thriller” about love, lust and the power of deception.

New this year they have also partnered up with Anna Jacysyn to add some musical entertainment options on the evenings that the shows are dark. Tickets for the following shows are $25 each and available at

DARKDAYSLIVE – “When the Thespians have a night off, Musicians bring that stage to life”

July 22nd: Jazz Café Quintet featuring Anna Jacyszyn – Energetic! Confidence just spills off the stage and into your perception – LIVELOVEJAZZ

July 29th: Melina Moore “Soprano on the Loose” – A Colouratura Soprano with a repertoire that captivates your musical senses and charms you silly!

August 5th: THE PONDERODA’S “Like the best mixed tape you’ve ever owned!” An 8 piece band of solid harmonies, sonic flavors & cultural backgrounds creating fusionmusicality.

August 22nd: SoulJazzCafe – Imagine Jazz with an Afro, bellbottoms & beads…Now “play that funky music white band”

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