The Artery – one of Edmonton’s downtown music venues often used for indie theatre presentation and a Nextfest venue – will be closed on March 31st, 2015. Within the same week, Theatre Network has announced that it will temporarily move in to the C103 theatre space for the 2015/2016 theatre season.
The Artery has been owned and operated by Phil Munz since 2012. On Wednesday, February 25th, he was informed by the City of Edmonton that the building was no longer considered structurally sound and would be forced to close in approximately six weeks. The venue has a capacity of nearly 150 people and is located on Jasper Avenue (downtown).
Meanwhile, Edmonton’s Theatre Network – which suddenly lost its own home venue, the historic Roxy Theatre, by fire in January – has announced that it will temporarily move into C103, Catalyst Theatre’s soon-to-be former space for the 2015/2016 theatre season. (Click here for our news post about the fire.) Theatre Network notes that it continues to investigate options into rebuilding the Roxy Theatre, but will move into C103 on a temporary basis during that process. Catalyst Theatre will be moving to its new home, the Maclab Stage in the Citadel Theatre, in September 2015. (Click here for our news post about the upcoming move.)
Theatre Network has been able to present the entirity of its 40th anniversary season thanks to support from Eastglen High School (which hosted Famous Puppet Death Scenes by the Old Trout Puppet Workshop) and the new Backstage Theatre in the ATB Arts Barns (which will host the remainder of the 2014/2015 season). Theatre Network was able to present utilize the Backstage Theatre thanks to a unique partnership with Fringe Theatre Adventures and the Varscona Theatre Alliance, which itself will move into the Backstage Theatre for the 2015/2016 season while the Varscona Theatre undergoes its own rebuild. (Click here for our news post about this partnership.)
On January 23, 2015, the Artery hosted a fundraiser for Theatre Network to support the company after the loss of the Roxy. During the event, Mary Pinkoski, Poet Laureate for the City of Edmonton (2013 – 2015) shared a new poem commemorating the Roxy Theatre entitled “The way a curtain opens and closes and opens again.” Considering the speed of which these events have occured over the last two months, we thought it would be appropriate to share her poem here (with the poet’s permission).