Hansel & Gretel (2008)
Hansel and Gretel live in an impoverished homestead on the edge of the Black Forest. With dreams of a life more lavish they run away from home and find themselves lost amongst the dark tall trees. After days of wandering they come across a trail of candy that leads them to a radiant house built of sweets and pastries. The Witch, disguised as a kind old woman, takes the children into her delicious home for a large feast. Before long it becomes clear that they’ve been lured into a trap set by the Witch to keep them prisoner. Working together to escape, Hansel and Gretel now long for the comfort and simple beauty of the home they left behind.
Cast & Crew
Deanna is excited to be working with Alberta Opera team for the first time. Recent costume design credits include The Pearl Fishers, Lakme, Emperor of Atlantis (Sterling Award Winner) and South Pacific (Sterling Award Winner) All for the Edmonton Opera. She has also designed locally for several theatres including Grant MacEwan College (A Winters Tale), Northern Light Theatre (The Woman Who Cooked Her Husband) and St. Albert Children's Theatre (Cinderella, Wizard of Oz). Deanna also curated The Opera Coat Project, a wearable art exhibit featuring work by herself and 21 contributing artists presented by the Alberta Craft Council.
Stage Manager, The Varscona Theatre
Dawn Friesen has recently completed her BFA Stage Management degree at the University of Alberta. In the spring of 2009 she wrote, performed and produced her own one woman show Mumsicle (Mediocre@Best). Stage Management credits include: Super Power (ATCO Energy Theatre), The Science of Disconnection(Shadow Theatre) Assassins, Major Barbara, Largo Desolato (Studio Theatre), Happy Kitchen (Serial Collective), Stone Cold Dead Serious (Media Room-UofA), PopTart (Pony Productions), SubUrbia (Teens @ The Turn), Mules (Bent out of Shape), The Blonde (Standard Parrallel), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Glenmary Theatre) The Laramie Project (Augustana). Assisting Stage Management credits include: Titus Andronicus, The Comedy of Errors (FreeWill Players) Misery (Theatre Network) What the Butler Saw (Studio Theatre), The Shunning (Media Room-UofA). Dawn served as Apprentice Stage Manager on Edmonton Opera's The Pearl Fishers and FreeWill Players productions of As You Like It and Richard III.
Ben Janko is a freelance stage manager and director for the theatre. Recently, he shared Caryl Churchill’s ghastly play Drunk Enough to Say I Love You? with audiences at the 2010 Edmonton Fringe. Other directing credits include Characters and Violence (Nextfest 2010) and the Night Before Christmas at the University. Recent stage management work includes: While We’re Young, Shelter(Citadel), Bashir Lazhar (Wishbone at the 2009 Fringe), the Elephant Man (Studio Theatre), Ubu Roi and GayfaceTwo Gentlemen of Verona and the Winter’s Tale(Freewill Players), and Poetry in Motion – On Ice (National Ice Theatre of Canada). At the University, he chaired the New Works Festival from 2008 – 2010. Ben holds a Bachelor of Arts with Honours in Drama from the University of Alberta.
Daniela Masellis is an Edmonton based set, costume and lighting designer and a graduate of the UofA with a B.F.A. in Theatre Design. After graduating she continued her studies with an internship in Italy at the ‘Teatro alla Scala’ Milan Opera. Her Edmonton design credits include- Cuckoos( ‘07 Sterling, Best Fringe Production), Coffee Dad, Chicken Mom and the Fabulous Buddha Boi (‘08 Sterling, Best Fringe Production), design associate to B. Gerecke for the Catalyst Theatre’s production Nevermore, set design for Defiance Theatre’s Half a League, production design for The Maggie Tree’s A Life in the Day (’08 Sterling, Best Independent Production), set and lighting for Teatro LaQuindicina’s Everyone goes to Mitzi’s and costume design for Workshop West’s Seed Savers and this season’s upcoming credits will also include work for Shadow Theatre.
Erik Mortimer is excited to be entering his first season with the Alberta Opera. He is a graduate of the Grant MacEwan University music program in piano performance (2010). Raised in Rossland BC, Erik has a love for all music and a drive for performing. Erik has experience in the theatre as an actor/pianist/musical director most recently with the Gold Fever Follies in Rossland. Erik currently plays in several groups around the city of Edmonton in many styles including Jazz, Latin, Country, Rock and Gospel music.
Bryan started life as an artist and he continues in this pursuit in spite of his financial advisors. He studied art and life drawing in Winnipeg, California and (when his student visa ran out) Vancouver. He does love working in theatre cause he gets to design really big things with other peoples money. Bryan’s hobbies include staying out of trouble while at sea and sneaking pictures of his friends while their not looking. He is excited to be working with the Alberta Opera Musical Theatre for Young People.
Matt is tremendously excited to be working with Alberta Opera for his first professional show! He just graduated from Grant MacEwan University's Theatre Arts program in the spring of 2010 where he appeared in productions of Little Meas Val du Val, A Connecticut Yankee as Sir Kay, and Pacific Overtures as the Shogun's Mother and the Old man in a tree. This past summer, Matt co-created and acted in his first Edmonton Fringe show, Moonrock Landing, along with many of his classmates from MacEwan. Matt enjoys watching the sun set and long walks on the beach.
Adam Tsuyoshi Turnbull
adam is a freelance theatre technician + designer, a multimedia + graphic designer, and is currently studying the cello. he likes bicycles, experimenting with user-interface design, and eating sushi. he grew up on a farm.
Matt Van Boeyen
The Witch / Various Ensemble
Matt is looking forward to performing with Alberta Opera for a second season, having played a saucy Latino frog in the recent British Columbia tour of The Frog Prince. Over the summer Matt got his grammar on and beefed up on his social studies while performing in Schoolhouse Rock LIVE! ( small nest Productions ) at the Winnipeg, Saskatoon, and Edmonton fringe festivals. In 2008 Matt graduated from the MacEwan Theatre Arts program, where he performed such roles as Professor Bhaer in Little Women, Pooh-Bah in The Hot Mikado, and Peter Trofimov in Anton Chekhov's The Cherry Orchard. Some of Matt's favorite things include sushi, ghost stories and the Vancouver Canucks (sorry Alberta!). Matt's favorite part of working with Alberta Opera is answering questions from the audience after the show, including the ridiculous ones.
Gretel / Various Ensemble
Robyn is delighted to be working with Alberta Opera! She has just recently graduated from the Grant MacEwan Theatre Arts program where she had the privilege of performing the roles of Alice Beane in Titanic—The Musical, Kitty Verdun in Where’s Charley?, Miss Dorothy Brown in Thoroughly Modern Millie and Irene in the original play The Addlepated Nixie by Stewart Lemoine. You can also catch her singing and dancing this fall in Teatro La Quindicina’s final show of the season Everybody Goes to Mitzi’s at the Varscona Theatre. Originally from Vancouver BC, Robyn began performing at an early age when she would put on low budget renditions of Broadway musicals in her parents’ basement. She is over the moon to be working with such a fun and creative group of people.
Hansel & Gretel Adapted by Farren Timoteo and Jeff Unger, Music by Jeff Unger, Directed by Farren Timoteo, starring Jason Hardwick, Matt Van Boeyen and Robyn Wallis. Photos by Ian Jackson