ABOUT US-2024

What we do…

”The funds generated for Gaslight Community Theatre Productions through
ticket sales, donations, and sponsorships, are used in ways that benefit our whole community:

THE GASLIGHT TOUR
The annual Gaslight Tour – now in “Armchair Tour” format — provides top-notch entertainment through performances by local people, of original plays, written by local people. The format may have changed; however, our plays will always showcase the history of Collingwood. We sell out quickly every year, and judging from the patron surveys, people love what we’re doing.

THE PAGE-TO-STAGE WRITING PROGRAMS
We subsidize two writing programs each year for adults in our community. Small class sizes, low tuition costs, and lots of personal attention make these programs such a hit with our writers. Janet Wilkinson produces the Scene Writing Course, which is taught by celebrated Canadian playwright Dan Needles. Each year, 4 scenes are chosen to be dramatically read in a production event called 4 Scenes & a Cup of Tea.

Dawn Hanley produces ‘The Playwriting Experience’. Under the guidance of 2 experienced teachers & playwrights, participants are guided through the process of how to create a 20-minute, one-act play. The plays must be historically based and focused on a specific theme. The best 4 plays are selected to be produced as the Gaslight Tour.

THE GASLIGHT YOUTH PROGRAM
2015 was the last year for Day of Delight, the whimsical Street Festival for children of all ages. We replaced this event with Gaslight Youth Theatre, run by the creative, talented Shirley Joost. In 2016, we were Production Sponsors for Sandcastle Theatre’s Little Princess, and we ran a full-day workshop of improv and musical theatre for teens. Since 2017, we have subsidized tuition fees for children to attend March Break and/or Summer Drama Camps. In 2019 we provided some funds to send the Worsley Elementary School Concert Band to Ottawa to compete in the Musicfest Canada Nationals. In 2024 we are starting a bursary to assist graduating students from both Collingwood secondary schools who plan to pursue studies in
theatre or film.

FULL-LENGTH PLAY
A long-time dream for Gaslight Community Theatre came to fruition with the production of our first full-length play in March 2018. Produced by Janet Fairbridge, directed by Anne Raciunas, and starring Janet Fairbridge, Anne Raciunas, and Andja Martynuik, Daniel McIvor’s Marion Bridge was a great success. We made this a fund-raising project and were pleased to be able to donate over $2000 in after-expense profits to Hospice Georgian Triangle.

Vision Statement

Gaslight Community Theatre Productions seeks to provide an outlet for creative inclusive community involvement while producing quality education and entertainment in a safe and supportive space.

Land Acknowledgement

It is our privilege to come together on the traditional territory of the Anishinaabeg. 

Knowledge of our shared past compels us to confront the long history of colonization and its dire impact on indigenous peoples, and we are further committed to repairing rifts and building meaningful partnerships as we move together into the future. 

We are honoured to share stories in the tradition of the indigenous peoples who, for thousands of years, walked upon and cared for the landswe all now call home. We enter these tales together. 

New (old) Executive Producer for 2024: Monica Wilson

A resident of Collingwood since 1974, Monica enjoyed a 34-year teaching career at Collingwood Collegiate, where she taught English and was Head of Library. She raised 3 children in this community and is now proud grandmother of 6. She auditioned for the first Gaslight Tour in 2010. After 3 years of acting roles, she joined the Production Team. As former Executive Producer, Monica led the Gaslight team through 4 successful years, from 2016 to 2019.

Monica was very happy to pass the baton to Laurie May at the end of the 2019 season. Laurie led the company through some tumultuous times during the pandemic. Without the Tour’s revenue to keep us afloat, Gaslight Community Theatre was doomed. Laurie saved us by storing our costumes & props in her own house and by thinking outside the box. She produced the very successful Cemetery Stories in 2021and when we were able to gather in larger groups again, she produced the last walking tour – Unsolved Mysteries – in 2022. In 2023, Laurie produced the innovative armchair tour – Old News. During her 4 years as Executive Producer, Laurie did some fabulous team building as well, which encouraged Monica to take on the leadership role once again.

Board  Members:
Monica Wilson (President/Chair), Chelsea Weston (Secretary), Susan Brindisi (Treasurer), Dawn Hanley, Laurie May, Janet Wilkinson

What we did…

How many of these Tours do you remember?

  • 2010 – ALL ABOARD, FULL STEAM AHEAD
  • 2011 – WHISKEY & WICKEDNESS
  • 2012 – TALES FROM THE HEARTH
  • 2013 – LAUNCHING A LEGACY
  • 2014 – THE GREAT WAR, 1914 – 1918
  • 2015 – OUR SPORTING HERITAGE
  • 2016 – LIGHTHOUSE LEGENDS
  • 2017 – 150 YEARS OF GREATNESS
  • 2018 – TAKING CARE OF BUSINESS
  • 2019 – THE HERSTORY OF COLLINGWOOD
  • 2021 – CEMETERY STORIES
  • 2022- UNSOLVED MYSTERIES
  • 2023- OLD NEWS
  • 2024- A NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM (more details to come)

Over a decade ago, Arlene Noble brought the idea of the Gaslight Tour to Collingwood.  She had the opportunity to attend a similar theatre experience in Waterford, Ontario and she loved the concept!  Lincoln also has a similar-format event, the Lamplighter Tour, now in its 18th year. With the support of the Collingwood Rotary Club and the assistance of a great team of volunteers, the Gaslight Tour was born. From the start, the Collingwood community embraced this project. As you know, the tickets are still in high demand and we generally sell out in a matter of days.

Many Gaslight volunteers have been involved from the very start, as you can see from their biographies. We are also thrilled to add new members to our team every year. New enthusiastic members and new stories will keep the Gaslight Tour alive for many years to come.

“An audience is privy to the glittering final product, but what goes unseen is the incredible amount of mental energy that propels a play to that final trial. There is laughter, there is frustration, there are late nights, snacks, sleep deprivation, and burning motivation. There are terrible failures and great surging victories. Above all, and without exception, there is drama. Whatever the outcome, what you see on the stage has been accomplished collectively and as a community.”

– Anne Raciunas

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