On Tuesday evening The Sanderson Centre for the Performing Arts (88 Dalhousie St.) opened their doors, welcoming in enthusiastic members of the public and media to proudly announce their highly anticipated centennial season.
The Sanderson Centre audience sat quietly and expectantly as the lights dimmed in the historic theatre. David McKee, Brantford’s Town Crier, quickly took the stage to begin a reflective, and energetic cry summarizing the last 100 years and looking ahead to what’s next.
Glenn Brown, Theatre Manager, also acted as the Master of Ceremonies for the event, thanking sponsors and introducing esteemed speakers: His Worship Mayor Kevin Davis, MPP Will Bouma, and Tim Sheldon, President of Sanderson Centre Foundation.
This season has been 100 years in the making. Brown added, “it is a daunting task to look at all that has been on our stage over the years and to find a way to celebrate that rich history. We’ve tried to meet the challenge and entertain you with selections in keeping with our three eras.” The three eras he is referring to are:
- Vaudeville – The Temple Theatre – Brantford’s Supreme Playhouse
- Film – The Capitol was Brantford’s premier movie palace for nearly sixty years
- Performance – The Sanderson Centre has been bringing the performing arts to our community for nearly a third of a century
The centennial season will kick off on Sunday, October 6, 2019 with “Brace Yourself”—a fun-filled cocktail of circus, dance, and live music to celebrate this special anniversary. Brantford’s own Debra Brown has assembled this stellar celebration in two acts featuring members of Zarcada Circus, plus fabulous Cirque Du Soleil alumni, and much more.
Families will clamber to get tickets for “C is for Celebration—Sesame Street Live’s 50th Anniversary Tour.” This performance, held on Friday, November 22, will feature singing and dancing with Elmo and the gang and bring the magic and excitement of Sesame Street to life.
Country music fans can enjoy musical performances from George Canyon, The Abrams, Megan Patrick, Natalie McMaster and Donnell Leahy. The Sanderson Centre will also welcome Canadian Rock icon, Kim Mitchell. Classic Albums Live will also perform: Led Zeppelin IV, Fleetwood Mac – Greatest Hits, Tom Petty – Damn The Torpoedoes, and David Bowie – Ziggy Stardust.
Christmastime will bring two special performances. The Nutcracker: A Canadian Tradition (December 8) and for the first time ever, The Tenors will be making their first appearance to Brantford to for this special 100th Anniversary celebration.
The Lobby Series is a chance for a small audience to connect with a performer in a way that isn’t possible on a large stage. This year, the Sanderson Center will welcome: Anne Marie Scheffler presenting MILF Life Crisis, Sarah Hagen – Flights of Music and Wine, and Valdy – Celebrating 50 Years of Touring and Susan Aglukark – Canada’s Arctic Rose.
In need of a laugh? Sanderson Centre has you covered this year with a wide range of gut-busting performances. Howie Mandel will take centre stage on November 1, 2019 to keep you entertained for the evening with his standup. If that’s not enough, join Colin Mochrie and Asad Mecci on January 29, 2020 for an evening of hilarious hypnosis. Twenty volunteers from the audience will have the chance to do improv with Mochrie while under hypnosis. One of the nation’s funniest comedians, Brent Butt, returns to the Sanderson Centre on April 1, 2020. Brent has performed at the world’s most prestigious comedy festivals, toured internationally and created and starred in the well known television sitcom, Corner Gas.
In celebration of its Centennial theme this season the 2019-2020 film series consists of six films that have been shown on the Sanderson Centre stage over the years. Sit back and re-live these unforgettable films from the past in their original setting. All films screen on Sundays at 3:00 p.m. and cost $9.00 each. The films are: Casablanca, Jaws, The Wizard of Oz, The Sound of Music, Grease, and Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.
Two more performances you don’t want to miss are: Circa’s presentation of ‘Humans’ and Australia’s leading Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islander Performing Arts company, Bangarra Dance. The acrobats from award-winning contemporary circus ensemble Circa take us on a stirring journey of what it means to be human as the artists explore the physical limits of their bodies as they are pushed to the extreme. Bangarra presents ‘Spirit,’ a powerful collection of dance stories from Bangarra’s 30-year repertoire. Bangarra is only coming to 5 communities in Canada: Vancouver, Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, and Brantford. The Sanderson Centre for the Performing Arts is especially lucky to have the opportunity to present this amazing dance show in celebration of First Nations Peoples.
In addition to locking down some amazing performers in this upcoming celebratory season, the Sanderson Centre is also pleased to announce the arrival of their first book—a beautiful hardcover coffee table book commemorating 100 years of history and culture. The book will sell for $50, but is available for pre-order up until Labour Day for $40.00. The theatre will be licensed to sell alcohol this fall, for the first time, the box office will also be moving away from gift certificates towards gift cards and there will be a new membership card with improved features available for the ‘Centennial Member.’ In addition, you will also be able to purchase hats, umbrellas, sweatshirts, shirts, bags, and more as souvenirs throughout the season.
We could go on all day about the fantastic programming coming to the Sanderson Centre for its 2019-2020 season, but the best way to find out more is to head down to 88 Dalhousie St. yourself and pick up a copy of their annual brochure OR visit them online on their website. Tickets for the new season go on sale June 28, 2019 at 12:00 p.m. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the show(s)!
Sanderson Centre for the Performing Arts
88 Dalhousie St.
Brantford, ON N3T 2J2
Box Office Hours: Monday to Friday 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.