Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Orson Welles' War of the Worlds with Nicholas Campbell Mar 31 - Apr 3 in Toronto

From a media release:

Art of Time Ensemble presents
in association with Harbourfront Centre's World Stage
The War of the Worlds
Orson Welles' radio drama with music by Bernard Herrmann
starring a powerhouse cast of Nicholas Campbell, Don McKellar and Marc Bendavid
Toronto - The acclaimed Art of Time Ensemble, in association with Harbourfront Centre's World Stage, proudly presents The War of the Worlds, a celebration of the music of Academy Award-winning film composer Bernard Herrmann to mark the centenary of his birth.

• Featuring some of Canada's most outstanding artistic talents, The War of the Worlds runs Thursday, March 31 through Sunday, April 3, 2011 at Enwave Theatre.

This staging of Orson Welles' notorious 1938 radio drama adaptation of the 1898 novel of the same name by H.G. Wells features a powerhouse cast - Nicholas Campbell, Don  McKellar and Marc Bendavid - a live 5-piece band and sound effects by foley artist John Gzowski. Art of Time Ensemble Artistic Director Andrew Burashko directs as well as conducts.

Herrmann was the musical director on Orson Welles' radio adaptation of The War of the Worlds, originally broadcast on October 30, 1938. Aired as a hoax, it famously caused widespread panic as its news bulletin format led many listeners to believe a Martian invasion was actually happening in real time. Art of Time is using the same script.

Also on the program is the world premiere of an instrumental suite - Herrmannthology - newly composed by Dan Parr based on 20 of Herrmann's film scores, accompanied by a live mix of stills and footage from the various films. One of Hollywood's most iconic composers, Bernard Herrmann was responsible for most of Alfred Hitchcock's film scores as well as the music for Orson Welles' films and radio dramas including Hitchcock's Psycho, Vertigo and North by Northwest and Welles' Citizen Kane and The Magnificent Ambersons. He also penned the music for Martin Scorsese's Taxi Driver, the original Cape Fear (1962) and The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951).

Conducted by Andrew Burashko, Herrmannthology is performed by some of the finest musicians in the country: Les Allt (flute/alto flute), Ben Cruchley (piano), Max Christie (clarinet), Tom Hazlett (bass), John Johnson (saxophone), Al Kay (trombone), Kevin Turcotte (trumpet), Trevor Tureski (percussion) and Joan Watson (french horn).

A multiple Gemini Award-winner for his leading role in the popular television series Da Vinci's Inquest, and with over 40 film and television starring credits, Nicholas Campbell recently earned accolades in Company Theatre's Through the Leaves at Tarragon Theatre.

Award-winning writer and actor Don McKellar has been associated with some of the most acclaimed film and television shows in Canada including collaborations with director Bruce MacDonald on Roadkill and Highway 61 (actor and screenwriter), This Movie is Broken and Trigger; authoring screenplays for Thirty Two Short Films About Glenn Gould and The Red Violin; acting in television treasures such as Twitch City and Slings & Arrows; winning a Genie Award for his performance in Atom Egoyan's Exotica; winning a Tony Award for Best Book of a Musical for The Drowsy Chaperone, and more.

Up and coming actor Marc Bendavid was recently seen in Art of Time Ensemble's Shakespeare: If Music Be and Factory Theatre's The Madonna Painter.

Art of Time Ensemble presents, in association with Harbourfront Centre's World Stage,
The War of the Worlds
Orson Welles' radio drama to mark the centenary of composer Bernard Herrmann's birth
Starring Nicholas Campbell, Don McKellar and Marc Bendavid with foley artist John Gzowski
Directed and conducted by Art of Time Ensemble Artistic Director Andrew Burashko
Music composed and arranged by Don Parr
Thursday, March 31 - Sunday, April 3, 2011
Thursday-Saturday at 8pm; Matinees Saturday at 2pm and Sunday at 4pm
Harbourfront Centre's Enwave Theatre, 231 Queens Quay West
Tickets: $25-$59 ¬- Box Office: 416-973-4000 or

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