The Great Canadian Theatre Company starts its first ever Undercurrents theatre festival Wednesday.
The festival will focus on six small, edgy shows that don\’t fit the Holland Avenue theatre\’s biggest stage, said the GCTC\’s artistic associate Patrick Gauthier.
Three of the plays are local productions, and Gauthier said the festival is a great chance to expose local audiences to something different.
\”We can say, these are shows we think you might like, whereas if it was in the [Ottawa Fringe Festival] or at Arts Court, they might not take the risk,\” Gauthier said.
\”But it\’s in our building, so why not take the risk?\”
It\’s also a chance for local producers to use a studio space they may not have been able to afford, Gauthier said.
\”This is huge for new creation in Ottawa,\” said Kevin Orr, whose play Bifurcate Me will play during the first week of the festival.
\”This opportunity is really going to jumpstart the community.\”
In Orr\’s play the two main actors are subjects in a scientific experiment. In a rehearsal this week both wore kneepads, as their characters fall more than 200 times in the play which runs less than an hour.
Orr said the play examines what drives people to get back up after they\’ve been beaten down.
Other plays set to play at the Undercurrents festival include shows about men having babies and the financial meltdown.
The festival runs from Jan. 26 – Feb. 6.