On June 24, Volunteer Gardeners of Clare Gardens Park in Westboro convened its first meeting to plan a community play they will deliver on Sept. 12.
Odyssey Theatre, which offers the highly acclaimed Theatre Under the Stars, has chosen the theme Spreading Roots for this summer's community threatre projects. The theme encompasses anything related to trees--not just their roots.
Any group in the city can ask for Odyssey's support in developing a short play. A professional producer, Rebecca Benton, along with other Odyssey staff will work with folks from your community or school to create a play that tells your stories about the value and beauty of trees. It's all part of a larger project called Neighbourhood Arts 150.
Deb Chapman (third from left in photo) is a founding member of Volunteer Gardeners of Clare Park Gardens. In recent years, this group has helped rejuvenate the municipal park on Clare Street after 22 ash trees that provided leafy shade were destroyed by the emerald ash borer.
"Some of the work we do is political," said Chapman, who once wrote a piece describing Kitchissippi Ward as "the Wild West" due to intensification's negative impact on mature trees on Westboro's streets. "But we think the arts can deliver a message in a softer and maybe more powerful way."
Other groups in Kitchissippi Ward interested in developing a play for delivery sometime in September, should contact Rebecca Benton via email.