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The Creative Issue – News for Creatives | July 10, 2020

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La Boite Theatre Company Cancels Entire 2020 Season

La Boite Theatre Company Cancels Entire 2020 Season
Emily Lowe

For the first time in its 95-year history, Brisbane’s La Boite Theatre Company, has canceled its 2020 season in response to the Coronavirus pandemic.

Australia’s longest continuously running theatre company considered all possible options to postpone or reschedule the program, but the current situation is too unpredictable for the season to go ahead.

La Boite Artistic Director and CEO Todd Macdonald said the 2020 season featured some of the most thrilling new productions for Brisbane artists.

“To have to cancel our season is gut wrenching… a profoundly sad and sobering experience,”

“ My heart goes out to the artists whose work will not be seen and to our audiences who will miss world premieres of some of the city’s most exciting new Australian works,” Mr Macdonald said.

La Boite’s Box Office staff will contact all ticket holders over the next few weeks to discuss refunds, exchanges or donations back to the company

Mr Macdonald said the company continues to work with local artists and actors to ensure Brisbane theatre can continue to thrive during and after the global health emergency.

“While our mainstage productions will not proceed, La Boite will continue to develop work with our Artists In Residence, provide a platform for open conversation and explore creative solutions and digital approaches so we can continue contributing to our state, both economically and culturally, during this crisis,” he said.

La Boite Executive Director Zohar Spatz said the arts are an essential industry in Queensland, and provides a major boost to the economy.

“The arts is an essential industry in Queensland, providing thousands of jobs, championing internationally-renowned artists and works, and epitomising the breadth and diversity of this state,” she said.

Ms Spatz said while it was crucial to call the season now, the industry will have the opportunity to use the crisis to flourish in its return.

“The arts industry is based on innovation and creativity and we believe that creative problem solving and storytelling will provide the inspiration needed for La Boite to recover and ultimately thrive,”

“…we understand how important and vital La Boite’s role is to tell stories and provide platforms and opportunities for artists and audiences to connect, to engage and to be entertained,” Ms Spatz said.

For now, the company plans for the 2021 season to be ‘powerful and diverse’, and showcase new work that celebrates all cultural differences.

“Our priority is to develop and present vital new Australian work that seeks to represent and engage the rich diversity of form, ideas, ethnicity, gender and identity,” Mr MacDonald said.

La Boite Theatre Company will provide updates on its website and social media, but support from the community is crucial to ensure the 2021 season and beyond can be as amazing as possible.

“Your support will enable us to continue exploring new arts practice, engage with our community through our youth and education programs and invest in the next generation of theatre makers and audiences,” Mr MacDonald said. 

 

The cancellation affects all scheduled performances of St Joan of the Stockyards (23 May
– 13 June), Grug (23 June – 4 July), The Happy Prince (18 July – 8 August) and Brothers
Book Club (29 August – 19 September).