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4th Line Theatre launching online digital festival

·3 min read

MILLBROOK -- Millbrook’s 4th Line Theatre will launch its Digital Festival of Light and Dark next week.

Micro-grants have been provided to 13 regional artists by the festival so they can create 12 five-minute digital showcases of their work, the theatre announced Tuesday.

The digital festival is free-of-charge to watch online and will allow people to engage with the artists’ creations in the safety of their own homes during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown through the theatre’s digital video gallery.

Managing artistic director Kim Blackwell said the theatre — which had to cancel last summer’s performances and then staged the Open Spaces Theatre Festival in downtown Peterborough in September followed by a limited run of “Bedtime Stories and Other Horrifying Tales” prior to Halloween at the theatre in October — wants to support local artists.

“That was the genesis for the idea which ultimately became the Digital Festival of Light and Dark. I am excited to showcase the work of so many talented local artists from almost every conceivable discipline,” Blackwell said.

“These short, digital works will be a chance for 4th Line audiences to see the depth and breadth of regional artists and their creative worlds.”

A variety of artistic styles such as poetry, photography and puppetry are manifested in the artists’ projects.

Topics and issues explored include the new silent nightlife in downtown Peterborough in lockdown, an exploration of physical vulnerability in the pandemic and the story of a girl trapped alone in a Welsh mine, to name only three, according to the theatre.

The 12 artists include Madison Constello, Naomi Duvall, Jennifer Elchuk, Josh Fewings, Madison Sheward, Frank Flynn, Steafan Hannigan, Mike Moring, Tristan Peirce, Kelsey Powell, Benj Rowland, P.J. Thomas and Laura Thompson.

In Hannigan’s multimedia project titled “the many shades between light and dark: art v COVID-19 in 2020,” artists, performers, musicians and directors reflect upon their life-changing experiences during the past year amid the global pandemic.

Hannigan is a multidisciplinary artist working in a variety of mediums including photography, video and music. Born and raised in Ireland, he currently lives in Baltimore in Northumberland County.

Peirce’s project, “Night Shift,” gives viewers a glimpse into Peterborough’s night life during the COVID-19 pandemic. Pierce is a photographer and videographer, based in Peterborough, who is also taking part in the Art Gallery of Peterborough’s group exhibition Presently.

“It’s Political,” a project created by Thompson — a designer based in Peterborough whose video work draws on found footage to create moving collages that are surreal and dynamic — explores the women’s movement and its evolution, history and future.

The 12 projects will be posted at www.4thlinetheatre.on.ca/festival-of-light-and-dark and at www.youtube.com/user/4thlinetheatreVIDEO starting at noon on Monday.

Marissa Lentz is a staff reporter at the Examiner, based in Peterborough. Her reporting is funded by the Canadian government through its Local Journalism Initiative. Reach her via email: mlentz@peterboroughdaily.com

Marissa Lentz, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Peterborough Examiner