Battlefords’ first professional theatre company heading into its first season

By Sarah Rae
September 8, 2016 - 7:01pm

A new theatre company is just about up and running in the Battlefords.

Tale Spinner Theatre will be the first professional theatre company based in the Battlefords, according to its founder Dannyll Challis. He said with the recent announcements of a new hotel and cinema, the Battlefords have a lot to offer and he wants to show people they don’t have to go to Saskatoon for quality entertainment.

“One of the things that has bothered me since moving back (to North Battleford) is always hearing people saying ‘we’re going into the city,’ whether it's to see a movie, whether it's to go to a concert, whether it's to see some theatre, even shopping,” he said. “I think right now is the perfect time to start providing the Battlefords with an alternative to going into the city.”

The company will have three main portions. The first is a youth theatre program, which will provide theatre classes for teenagers and culminate in a final production. The second is professional theatre, which Challis said will bring in professionals from across the province to work on top-notch performances. The last portion is community programming, which Challis said will have the company working with businesses around the northwest region to provide specialty programming to draw attention to the community’s needs.

Challis said his company is going to fill a space in the community for young people interested in performing.

“I know there's a desire among those teenagers to be involved in theatre,” he said. “There just doesn't seem to be an outlet for that currently so I think it's an important thing to bring a love of art back to teenagers.”

He said the connections he’s made working in theatre for roughly 30 years will help the professional productions grow and be of a high calibre. Each show will also run for several nights, giving more people the opportunity to enjoy them than a show that comes to the city just for a night.

Tale Spinner Theatre’s first production will be at the end of October and will combine the youth taking classes with professional actors.

Challis is holding two open houses Tuesday, Sept. 13 and Thursday, Sept. 15 at the Don Ross Centre at 7:30 p.m.


Sarah Rae is battlefordsNOW's court and crime reporter. She can be reached at [email protected] or tweet her @sarahjeanrae.

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