Our Theatres | Stratford Festival

(piano music) – [Narrator] This stage was built in 1953 and while there’s been
augmentations and changes to it, when you go underneath the stage, you’re looking at the
lumber that was there surrounded by a tent and the building was created around this particular stage. The shape of this room which put the actor and the text in the heart of the audience, it led to a revolution on
how we perform Shakespeare. (inspirational piano music) We’re here at the Stratford
Festival’s Avon Theatre, which is one of the oldest
continuously operating proscenium arch theaters in this country and certainly for the
Festival, a very unique stage because we have four stages at Stratford, three of them are thrust stages, this is our prosa house. This is the Tom Patterson Theatre here at the Stratford Festival. It is an incredible home for plays. There’s an intimacy here
to the Tom Patterson. There’s a chance to really examine and explore these texts with actors just a matter of feet away. The elongated thrust
provides a beautiful setting for these plays with many
different performance areas and many different dynamics. Coming and seeing a play
here in one position and then coming back
and seeing in another, is to see really a different play. Since it’s introduction about 12 years ago the Studio has been home to
many extraordinary examinations of new work, great classics. The Studio Theatre in its
intimacy where it wraps around a stage provides a terrific forum for the Stratford Festival forum. We had many events here
during the course of the year. And all sorts of wonderful
speakers, comedy nights and music concerts. The Stratford Festival has
citizens who are really part of Stratford and they come
from all over the world. They come from all the
countries in Europe, all the states in the United
States, they come from Japan, from the Philippines each year. And they come here to emerge themselves in this work, in these great plays and these great players. I think what Tyrone Guthrie
was trying to do was create a resource that is both an
escape and also a restorative that we get away from day to day life. It’s very important we’re
not in a major city. It’s very important you can leave, you can get unplugged from
all the hassles and everything that drains you back in your home and work and get away to a place
where you can enjoy and you can leave and go home restored.

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