Director Sara-Jeanne Hosie’s ensemble acts as a sort of Greek Chorus in the Company C production of Wintertime. (Christine van Reeuwyk/Oak Bay News)

VIDEO: Sara-Jeanne Hosie adds music to Wintertime in Oak Bay

Canadian College of Performing Arts’ Company C stages Wintertime starting Nov. 29

Wintertime is coming, and for the students in Company C, that doesn’t just mean the season.

No need for long johns when things heat up at the Canadian College of Performing Arts in Oak Bay. The third-year students of Company C tackle Charles L. Mee’s Wintertime.

“It’s going to be a challenging, and inventive process for me and the students as Mee’s work encourages thinking outside the box, broad interpretation, abstract design, physical theatre, and dance,” says director Sara-Jeanne Hosie.

The renowned Canadian actor and director enjoyed weaving new characters into the show, with an ensemble acting as a sort of Greek Chorus. The ensemble provides support to the story through movement, speech, and Hosie’s original compositions.

“I loved the idea that I could sit down with a script and find where the music lived in it, where the chorus would make their presence known,” Hosie said.

Described as a “sweet, dreamy romantic comedy,” Wintertime tells the story of young lovers, Jonathan and Ariel, who plan a private getaway at Jonathan’s cabin. Upon arrival they find that his parents, Maria and Frank had the same idea, to spend a weekend at the cabin with their respective lovers, Francois and Edmund. Throw in two lesbians from next door, a delivery person named Bob, and a flirty French doctor and you have the makings of a physical theatre farce that promises laughs.

Company C is a six-month program offered only to graduates of the two-year performing arts diploma at the Canadian College of Performing Arts, giving young performers the chance to work on three professional shows, in a professional environment, with professional directors engaged in the industry. The students in Company C take on roles onstage and work behind the scenes in various areas of production such as lights, sound, marketing, sets and props.

Hosie taught a master class with this group before embarking on the project with them. She’s not new to the Company C program, directing Into the Woods two years ago.

“They’re just about to go out in the world and give it a real try. It’s been an absolute pleasure working on it and creating (Wintertime),” she says. “They want to absorb everything. This group is so serious and so hard working that it’s inspiring. When you teach you learn, when you direct you learn and I’m definitely having that in this process.”

Company C presents Wintertime the CCPA performance hall, 1701 Elgin Rd. from Nov. 29 to Dec. 2. Get tickets online at ccpacanada.eventbrite.com, or call 250-595-9970.

“Working with this cast is a dream because we’ve been together, this is our third year now. It’s wonderful to work with a group of people that are so intimately connected,” said Lauren Welchner, who portrays Bob and is a member of the ensemble. “We’ve spent every day of the last three years together. In a way this is our last year to perform together, to create together and I think this piece is really important to all of us.”


 

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