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Shaw Festival Calendar 2020
Quotes by George Bernard Shaw

"Life is no brief candle to me. It is a sort of splendid torch which I have got a hold of for the moment, and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations."

"Imagination is the beginning of creation. You imagine what you desire, you will what you imagine and at last you create what you will."

"We are made wise not by the recollection of our past, but by the responsility of our future."

"Some men see things as they are and say 'why'; I dream things that never were and say 'why not'.

- George Bernard Shaw - (1856-1950)

Preview of shows in 2020

The Shaw Festival is one of the largest repertory companies in North America, and the only theatre in the world that specializes in plays written by Bernard Shaw and his contemporaries (1856-1950) "plays about the beginning of the modern world."  The 2019 Season will feature eleven diverse productions that include: Shaw re-envisioned by both directors and writers, newly commissioned works, plays by a new generation of provocative playwrights, re-explored classics and returning Festival favourites appearing on the Festival’s four Niagara-on-the-Lake stages:

The 2020 season will start in April and end October

Ticket prices and Ticket availability

Shaw Festival Box Office
1-800-511-SHAW (7429)

Book by: Arthur Laurents
Music by Jule Styne
Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim

Gypsy Rose Lee was the world’s most famous striptease artist; Momma Rose the ultimate stage mother. Follow their extraordinary story in Stephen Sondheim’s timeless musical about sex, power and longing. With legendary songs, including “Let Me Entertain You” and “Everything’s Coming up Roses,” Gypsy remains the greatest American musical..

Directed and choreographed by: Kimberley Rampersad
Opens: April 8
Closes: October 11
Theatre: Festival Theatre

The Devil's Disciple
By: Bernard Shaw
Dick Dudgeon is one of Shaw’s great puzzles. To the people of his Revolution-era New England town he is “the Devil’s disciple.” But when British soldiers come to take their Presbyterian minister to the gallows for helping the rebels, Dudgeon does something truly remarkable. A potent mixture of sex and danger, Shaw’s first major hit has some of his best scenes and his sharpest comedy.

Director: Eda Holmes
Opens: May 14
Closes: October 9
Theatre: Festival Theatre

Sherlock Holmes and the Raven's Curse
By R. Hamilton Wright
Based on the works of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
He’s back. Everyone’s favourite detective returns to The Shaw – but this time it’s personal. When a much-loved uncle dies in mysterious circumstances, Sherlock must revisit the scenes (and loves) of his youth. Is there really a curse on his family? Will he – or perhaps his beautiful and brilliant cousin – be the next victim? Holmes and Watson have to race against time to solve the puzzle.

Director: Craig Hall
Opens: June 21
Closes: October 18
Theatre: Festival Theatre

Adapted by Ravi Jain and Miriam Fernandes

The Life We Inherit. The world is born. It is innocent, peaceful and full of joy. We hear the origin story of the rival Pandava and Kaurava clans and all the choices that lead to their infamous Game of Dice. Each action taken during these origin stories plants a seed for the future. What are the choices we inherit and how do the choices we make impact generations to come? The world moves from innocence to corruption and the planet is slowly set alight.

Dharma: The Life We Choose. The world is on fire. There is a battle that we must fight – it is inside all of us. What is your purpose? How do you determine right from wrong? We tell the story of the end of the world, of a great battle which causes a mass extinction and of the survivors left behind to rebuild.

Director: Ravi Jain
Opens: August 15
Closes: September 19
Theatre: Festival Theatre

Charley's Aunt
By Brandon Thomas
Today’s the day. If Charley and Jack don’t tell Amy and Kitty how they feel about them, the college term will finish and they may never see them again. But their plan to invite the young ladies for lunch depends on the presence of Charley’s visiting Brazilian aunt. When she lets them down at the last moment, all hope seems to have gone. Except that their friend, Fancourt Babberley, happens to be on his way to a fancy-dress party … hilarity ensues in this laugh-out-loud comedy.

Director: Tim Carroll
Opens: April 2
Closes: October 17
Theatre: Royal George Theatre

Prince Caspian
Adapted for the stage by Damien Atkins
After the success of The Magician’s Nephew and The Horse and His Boy, we return to Narnia with a gripping adventure based on one of the best-loved C.S. Lewis books. Young Prince Caspian has all the courage in the world, but he will need the four Pevensie children to help defeat his wicked uncle and restore peace to the land of Narnia. Featuring a battle scene so epic that even the trees join in, this is a wild ride for the whole family.

Director: Molly Atkinson
Opens: April 23
Closes: September 5
Theatre: Royal George Theatre

Based on the novella by  Virginia Woolf

One of the greatest love stories of all time, seen through the eyes of a dog. Not any old dog: Flush was the subject of some delightful verses by Elizabeth Barrett, the invalid poet who amazed the world by eloping with Robert Browning. Virginia Woolf’s ‘biography’ of one of history’s greatest cocker spaniels is a comic masterpiece about much more than a dog.

Lunchtime One-Act

Director: Tim Carroll
Opens: June 5
Closes: October 10
Theatre: Royal George Theatre

Book by John Weidman
Who on earth would want to kill an American president? Nine people have tried, four successfully. That’s not obvious material for a musical—unless you’re Stephen Sondheim. With music that spans the lifetime of the United States, he creates a carnival show, in which the nine assassins and would-be assassins, from John Wilkes Booth to Sara Jane Moore, tell their stories. The result is a bold and brilliant piece of theatre from the undisputed master of the modern musical. Mature content.

Director: Meg Roe
Opens: July 11
Closes: October 10
Theatre: Royal George Theatre

The Playboy of the Western World
By J. M. Synge

A murderer walks into a bar. Only, this being the wild West of Ireland, the man who has ‘killed his Da’ is greeted as a welcome relief from the monotony of life. To the landlord’s daughter Pegeen Mike, who is facing the imminent prospect of marrying a farmer, the mysterious Christy Mahon seems to embody all the danger and fearlessness that she has long dreamed of. But all is not what it seems …

Director: Jackie Maxwell
Opens: May 6
Closes: September 6
Theatre: Jacie Maxwell Studio Theatre

Desire Under the Elms
By Eugene O'Neill
Eugene O’Neill’s masterpiece of erotic desire takes a Greek tragedy and sets it on an American Gothic farmstead. The son can see that his father’s new young wife plans to push him out. His passionate hatred for her is only matched by hers for him. Blinded by passion, they are set on a collision course. But the rest of the world is not blind.

Director: Selma Dimitrijevic
Opens: June 4
Closes: October 10
Theatre: Jacie Maxwell Studio Theatre

Trouble in Mind
By Alice Childress

This should have been the first play by a black woman on Broadway. But in 1955 Alice Childress refused to have it staged on the Great White Way. Why? Because it is a play about white people putting on plays about black people, and the compromises that black artists have to make to work in the prevailing culture. Childress chose not to make the kind of compromise that Willetta, the heroine of her play, has spent her life wrestling with. A devastatingly observant satire on the rehearsal hall as a microcosm of society. This funny and moving play is a piece for our times.

WARNING: Mature content.

Director: Philip Akin
Opens: July 17
Closes: October 10
Theatre: Jackie Maxwell Studio Theatre

A Christmas Carol (2020)
Book by Charles Dickens

Ebenezer Scrooge is back! Nestled in the heart of the ultimate Christmas village, the charming holiday favourite A Christmas Carol returns to the Shaw Festival’s Royal George Theatre. It’s the perfect annual reminder of what Christmas is all about. Arrive feeling “Bah, humbug!” and leave full of warm, fuzzy Christmas spirit.

Buy both Holiday Season shows and save 20%!

Director: Molly Atkinson
Opens: November 8
Closes: December 23
Theatre: Royal George Theatre

Me and My Girl (2020)
Book and Lyrics by L. Arthur Rose and Douglas Furber

Back by popular demand, the Shaw Festival remounts the toe-tapping hit of the 2017 Season as part of the holiday season. Bill Snibson, a proud Cockney and newly discovered Earl of Hareford, is torn between the love of his gal and his aristocratic duty. This audience favourite is full of hilarious moments and infectious songs like “The Lambeth Walk” that are sure to brighten everyone’s holiday season.

Buy both Holiday Season shows and save 20%!

Director: Ashlie Corcoran
Opens: November 13
Closes: December 23
Theatre: Festival Theatre

Shaw Festival: 1-800-511-SHAW (7429)

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