Performing students bring the tale of the independent-minded Elizabeth Bennet and enigmatic Mr. Darcy to the Oak Bay stage in December.
The Canadian College of Performing Arts showcases the couple as they navigate social expectations and pre-conceived notions in Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, adapted and directed by Janet Munsil.
Munsil returns to CCPA to direct her adaptation of the classic tale, which premiered in 2012 as a co-production between Theatre Calgary and Canada’s National Arts Centre.
“I really tried to be true to Austen with my adaptation,” Munsil said. “I considered her a co-writer. I was listening for her voice while trying to pull out the humour without becoming a parody. To me, Pride and Prejudice is a comedy of human failing with a happy ending. I hope that people new to this piece will be able to discover this story and love it as much as the veterans.”
This is the first in-person show that Munsil has directed since 2020 and both she and the cast are thrilled to be bringing live theatre to an audience again.
“It is so important for the students to have an opportunity to perform for people. I believe great work has come from the past few years, but what truly draws people to the theatre is sharing that intimate artistic connection with the audience. I’m always very impressed by the ensemble work these students do. Even directing outside of the college with CCPA students, they always know how to support each other, and work together as a team,” Munsil said.
CCPA hosts a relaxed performance matinee Dec. 17. Open to anyone, these performances are intended specifically to be sensitive to anyone who may find the usual theatre environment challenging. There is a more casual approach to front-of-house etiquette; the performance is slightly adapted for a more comfortable environment, the lights remain on low throughout, and audience members are free to come and go as required.
CCPA stages Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice Dec. 15 to 18 at the performance hall on Elgin Road.
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