Rossland’s newest theatre company set to launch White Star Lady
Last month’s Golden City Days celebrations saw the launch of Rossland’s newest live theatre venture, Iron Mountain Theatre, where this group of four enthusiastic musicians and thespians burst onto the local scene with their eight-minute musical A Tribute to Mining. On October 22 and 23, this young company will launch their second production, White Star Lady, at the United Church here in town.
Founded this summer by Nadine Tremblay, Jane Gaudet, Mark Pollard, and recently joined by Torontonian RJ Peters, IMT’s aim is to do touring professional musical theatre, something unique to the area.
The group having recently been registered as a non-profit organization, Nadine Tremblay tells me, “[we] are totally innovative and brand new. Everything’s original.”
Nadine, Jane and RJ trained at Canadian College of Performing Arts in Victoria (at different times) and have extensive performing histories with various live theatre groups, and multi-talented Mark brings “a precise and creative writing style” to the group. He also wrote A Tribute to Mining. Both Nadine and Jane have started their own live theatre companies as well.
The name of the company was inspired by Rossland’s famous Red Mountain. “We thought it sounds strong, and Red Mountain [is red] because it’s filled with iron, and it identifies us with the region,” states Nadine
The upcoming White Star Lady production was written by Jane Gaudet and Mark Pollard, with music composed by Nadine, and it’s directed by RJ Peters. The sets and props were created by Mark and RJ, and a local designer from Trail created the costumes. WSL is a one woman musical, performed by Jane Gaudet, focusing on the life of Violet Jessop, who was a stewardess aboard ships of the White Star Line. In fact, she served aboard three ill-fated sister-ships, the RMS Olympic, the HMHS Britannic, and the infamous RMS Titanic. She survived both the Britannic and Titanic disasters.
Because this is a touring live theatre group, a tour has been organized and the show will go on in United Churches in Trail, Castlegar, Nelson, and Kaslo.
As a non-profit group, IMT has received grants from the CBT, the Columbia Kootenay Cultural Alliance, and the group also fundraises, having had a bottle drive and a raffle supported by Rossland Pro-Hardware. A fundraiser involving the Tuques is slated to happen in December.
“The community support has been tremendous, and not just financially,” Nadine says, noting that the owners of the Red Room have donated a rehearsal space for the troupe in the Prestige and another location in town has donated space in its shop to allow the company to build their sets, the Rossland Telegraph and Lone Sheep Publishing have also supported the venture as media sponsors.
When asked what has surprised her most during IMT’s recent whirlwind of activity, she responds, “It’s always surprising to realize how much time goes into stuff. We all know that it’s going to be a lot of work and that you’re going to do this on top of your day job and whatnot, but it’s like a full time job after everything, and it’s just wild how we decided to take on creating, producing and touring two musicals in less than a year.”
Next up for IMT is a satire called Ski Bum: The Musical, which should debut in January in Rossland. Written by Tyler Bradley and Mike Pollard, with the music once again being composed by Nadine, the group hopes to tour the production around local ski resorts.
Tickets for White Star Lady’s Rossland shows are $10 and can be purchased at Rossland Pro-Hardware, or at the door.
For more information about Rossland’s newest live theatre sensation, you can visit their web site here: