Compelling new productions, major renovations and the appointment of Executive Director Hélène Turp

Centaur Theatre is launching its 55th season with a combination of compelling theatre that invites stories and artists from across Montreal and beyond, together with major renovations that will provide greater accessibility and creative opportunities into the future. Centaur is also announcing the appointment of Executive Director Hélène Turp who will work together with Artistic Director Eda Holmes to continue to pursue the mission of Building the Future @ Centaur

Centaur’s extensive ongoing renovations are an initiative designed to create greater accessibility throughout the organization. Starting with a new wheelchair lift that will allow patrons to enter the building directly from the street in a safe and comfortable manner, and the addition of a fly-tower above the main theatrical space which will bring Centaur Theatre up to par technically with the major Francophone theatrical venues in the city, this renovation will expand Centaur’s ability to welcome artists and audiences from across Montreal.

At the season launch, Artistic Director Eda Holmes commented’ “This renovation is the first one that has been done in our larger theatre since the 1970s and it is urgently needed. Over the years many wonderful shows were created in C2 despite the limitations that the lack of actual theatrical rigging imposed but the building itself was under strain the whole time. Creating a fully functional fly-tower above that stage means we will have a theatre space with greater creative capacity and is comparable to theatre spaces at TNM, Duceppe and Denise-Pelletier.”

“We want to make sure that the audiences and artists of the English theatre community have access to work that is created on that scale. It will take time to get everything fully in place, but we hope that the efficiencies that a real fly-tower will provide will make more art possible at Centaur now and into the future. It’s interesting how a piece of equipment can enhance the creative options for the creators and Directors.”

In addition to support form the Governments of Canada and Quebec; the project has been made possible by individual Centaur donor Marisa Testa, who has generously helped fund the wheelchair access.

Centaur is also excited to announce the new appointment of Executive Director Hélène Turp. Hélène is a seasoned manager with over 30 years of experience in the cultural sector.

“Hélène brings a world of experience and passion to the newly created role of Executive Director for Centaur Theatre. I am enjoying the creative partnership we have been forging since she joined the company in July,” says Eda Holmes.

Hélène’s journey through the cultural landscape has been marked by numerous endeavours including General Manager of the theatre at the Saidye Bronfman Centre (Segal Centre for the Arts), where she played a pivotal role in developing innovative programming, strategic planning, and marketing strategies. Her experience also extends to the world-renowned Cirque du Soleil, where she served as Artistic Assistant to the Artistic Director and General Stage Manager for tours in Japan and Europe. Upon her return to Montréal, she became the Stage Manager and Assistant to Diane Dufresne for her tours across Québec, Canada, and Europe.

Hélène worked for several years as the Production Manager and eventually became the Co-General Director at Les Coups de Théâtre, an international festival for young audiences. She then joined the Concours Musical International de Montréal (CMIM), an international classical music competition, where she developed several special initiatives and projects.

Before joining Centaur Hélène was the associate to the General Director at the Opéra de Montréal. Her commitment to fostering creativity, nurturing talent, and forging meaningful partnerships is evident in her track record. Hélène will bring her diverse experiences and expertise to Centaur Theatre to collaborate with Eda Holmes and the team to build the future of the company.

“Centaur Theatre has always been close to my heart, so I’m thrilled to have been appointed Executive Director. As I embark on this exciting new chapter, I’m filled with enthusiasm, energy and commitment and I look forward to working with Eda, the team, and the board to continue to build the future of Centaur Theatre” Hélène Turp said at the season launch event.

For its 55th season, Centaur will offer a richly entertaining and thought-provoking playbill. Leading the Centaur season is alterNatives, the English-language production of Menuentakuan’s alterIndiens, directed by Xavier Huard and written by Anishinaabe playwright Drew Hayden Taylor. This production is representative of Centaur’s commitment to giving voice to Indigenous theatre-makers and collaborating with the Francophone theatre world, October 17 – November 5, 2023.

Diane Flacks makes her debut at Centaur with GUILT (a love story), sharing her personal experience through an erudite, witty, and emotionally-charged one-woman show. Drawing from her Jewish heritage, western philosophy, and pop culture, the show will make its Montreal premiere after a run at Tarragon Theatre in Toronto. This production is directed by award-winning artist Alisa Palmer, who is a long-time collaborator of Flacks. March 12 – March 30, 2024.

Seven of Montreal’s top actresses explore what it means to be a woman working with Shakespeare today in Thy Woman’s Weeds. Written by Erin Shields; this feminist take on Shakespeare’s works highlights the contemporary social dynamics that challenge women’s full participation in the performing arts. Directed by Amanda Kellock, the show is in partnership with Repercussion Theatre and Tableau D’Hôte Theatre. On stage April 23 to May 12, 2024.

In addition, for the first time in their history Centaur Theatre Company has been invited by a Francophone theatre to present a French-language version of one of their most popular plays. Their 53rd season’s moving elegy for our planet, A Play for the Living in a Time of Extinction by Miranda Rose Hall, is being featured in the 2023/24 season at Théâtre La Licorne as Une pièce pour les vivant·e·x·s en temps d’extinction, translated by Sarah Jane Moloney, presented in French at Théâtre La Licorne, September 18 – October 6, 2023. In a recent conversation Eda remarked; “The acceptance by the Francophone audience at La Licorne has been exceptional! One of their regular patrons told me, ‘We need more of this kind of collaboration.”

Also, the company is introducing the Centaur Play Club, a fun, enriching book club experience that will give patrons the opportunity to meet six times a year to discuss a curated selection of plays related to the season. Participation in the club will be free for subscribers. October 2, October 30, November 27, February 5, March 4, April 8. Eda noted; “I had participated in a club like this before, and it was rewarding and was an opportunity to meet new people. It’s a lot like a book club. We thought we’d try here at Centaur.”

This year’s Brave New Looks program will feature the world premiere of Michaela Di Cesare’s Extra/Beautiful/U, produced by Infinithéâtre – November 30 – December 9, 2023.

The wildly popular Wildside Festival is back in January 2024, inviting a selection of the city’s most talented theatre artists – both emerging and established – to showcase their work. This is the fifth year the festival is being presented in collaboration with La Chapelle Scènes Contemporaines, marking another exciting partnership with the greater Montreal arts community. January 23 – February 4, 2024.

And back by popular demand, the carefully curated Centaur Music Series by singer-songwriter Sarah Segal-Lazar will showcase six free music nights inspired by the themes of each show in the Centaur Gallery following select weekend performances – October 27, 28, 2023, and March 22, 23, May 2 and 3, 2024.

For more information about the 2023/2024 season and special events, please visit the website:

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