The Infinithéâtre team is thrilled to get back to sharing provocative and inspiring stories… LIVE! Zach Fraser, in his first season as Infini’s Artistic Director, is honoured to announce the company’s 24th year of producing relevant theatre that explores and reflects the issues, challenges and possibilities of contemporary Québec. On offer is an eclectic mix of styles and voices that all in some way touch the theme, ‘Breaking Down Barriers’. The jam-packed 21/22 season of inspired and original work includes three premiere productions by some of Montréal’s most vibrant and bold creators, along with two exciting playwriting competitions, one vital play reading series, the first annual Artist-in-Residence, a new all-encompassing development program, and expanded outreach to schools and seniors. Infinithéâtre is the sole theatre in Québec (in French or English) whose mission is to develop, promote, produce and broker only plays written or adapted by Québec and Indigenous writers. Post-show artist talks are held for every production. Plays developed at Infinithéâtre frequently get produced as part of upcoming Infini seasons and across the country.
“This past year has been a difficult one for everyone. There is an urge to build up walls, to protect ourselves in isolation and to distance. We have learned to protect ‘our own’ and keep others apart,” said Fraser. “And yet, the most beautiful acts I’ve witnessed in this past year have unveiled a stronger sense of community, collective responsibility, and unity, with families sticking together and neighbours looking out for each other. People are in fact trying to better understand the realities of others; I’ve observed a curiosity, an openness, and empathy, despite our differences. These are the themes that bubble up in our productions and development work this coming season. I have faith that we are all taking important steps in the long process of breaking down barriers,” he added.
Infinithéâtre’s 2021-22 Season, Breaking Down Barriers
Omi Mouna – A fantastical encounter with my great-grandmother
Created & performed by Mohsen El Gharbi, translated by Leanna Brodie, November 4-14, 2021
Omi Mouna is the beautifully heartfelt, poignant and playful semi-autobiographical tale of Mohsen El Gharbi’s voyage from Montréal to Tunisia to meet his paternal great-grandmother and to retrace his family’s turbulent legacy. In its original French version, Omi Mouna toured extensively throughout Québec and New Brunswick. Infinithéâtre is proud to produce the English-language premiere of this compelling tragicomic tale by a highly charismatic performer. El Gharbi last left Infini audiences laughing with his zany performance in Mr. Goldberg Goes to Tel Aviv.
The Sighlence of Sky –Created & performed by Anana Rydvald, Nov. 25-Dec. 5, 2021
The Sighlence of Sky, a non-verbal mask and mime piece, is a tender ode to the heartache and the love that live within family bonds. From creator Anana Rydvald: “The Sighlence of Sky is inspired by my passionate parents, dear step-mother and me. But most of all, it’s a piece inspired by my resilient sister who is the innocent constant in our lives in which we reflect back our humanity again and again.” The final instalment of Rydvald’s trilogy of mask solos, she last charmed Infinithéâtre patrons with her META-winning (Montreal English Theatre Award), Love, Child.
Mazel Tov –Written by Marc-André Thibault, directed by Ellen David,March-April, 2022
Isabelle is Jewish… Patrick isn’t. They are getting married. During the ceremony, Patrick’s best friend Philip makes a gesture that is perceived to be anti-Semitic. Several guests are angry, as is Isabelle the bride. Chaos ensues… and things fall apart. The wedding is not the one they dreamt of. The marriage is even worse! Mazel Tov is a dark comedy that crosses the line as it divides and conquers our understanding of loyalty, friendship and family. Surprising us at every turn, it questions the politically correct times we are living in, and asks us to examine how far is too far. An English-language premiere.
Dynamic initiatives beyond the stage
Infinithéâtre’s 1st Annual Artist-in-Residence – Drew Hayden Taylor
Born and living on the Curve Lake First Nation in Ontario, Drew HaydenTaylor is one of Canada’s most versatile and prolific writers; an award-winning playwright, novelist, journalist and filmmaker. “As a First Nations playwright, I look forward to working with Zach and the team as we explore the wonders of Indigenous storytelling. I’m a huge fan of the company, having worked with them in the past, and am rubbing my hands with anticipation of seeing what artistic mischief we can all get into. My work, and as I understand it, also Infinithéâtre’s, is about pushing the boundaries and asking interesting questions. I am honoured to be given the opportunity to work with such a company,” said Taylor.
Big Bang Artists Laboratory
In Infinithéâtre’s ongoing pursuit of artistic excellence, and a sincere desire to support creators in their artistic process, the company is introducing the Big Bang Artists Laboratory. From Fraser: “I’m energized by challenges that can’t be answered on the page, but only in rehearsal or through design experimentation.” New this season, three projects will be given residencies with extended time in a rehearsal hall to explore and innovate, bringing together writers, directors, designers and performers as they collaborate to find exciting, original ways to tell live stories. Featured works for the 21/22 season include: Dominoes at the Crossroads by Kaie Kellough, Extra/Beautiful/U by Michaela Di Cesare, and Ricki by Joseph Shragge, with Scapegoat Carnivale.
The Pipeline – December 9-12, 2021
Free public play reading series where the audience takes centre stage, sharing valuable feedback that furthers script development and helps inform future seasons. Featuring the winners of:
Write-on-Q -Annual playwriting competition with a jury of professionals; winner receives a substantial cash award
The-Write-Stuff -New playwriting competition for youth with a cash prize awarded annually to the best new short play by an emerging writer aged 12-18. The deadline for submissions is June 15.
Park ‘n Play – open-air play readings, September 2021
Extended outreach to students & seniors including online access to shows as well as study guides and talkbacks.
The company creatively performs in unconventional venues, adding an opportunity for outreach. Venues this year include downtown Montréal’s KIN Experience, housed in the historic Sam the Record Man building.
Infinithéâtre– Le théâtre Québécois in English
Fostering a place for local and emerging artists Infini website