Korinne T.

Vancouver, British Columbia

Vancouver Heritage Fair

TUTS Theatre Under The Stars

My project is about Theatre Under The Stars (TUTS) which is a non-profit musical theatre company. My project includes research, photos, audio and video, artifacts and a 3D model. The majority of my research was taken from the interviews with TUTS's archivists and founders, Cecilia and Roger Smith.



What was the most interesting thing you learned about your topic?

What I really found interesting that I learned about TUTS while creating my project is that the current company is not the original one, which was founded in 1940. At that time, the shows, five each year, were completely professional and the performers came from across North America. Today, the modern-day company is mainly amateur, with the exception of union performers and specialty acts, and some of the crew, and the company mounts two shows per year

What important lessons have you learned that you want to share with other Canadians?

In a way TUTS creates it's own community where anyone with an interest in musical theatre is welcome to participate, whether they audition for the show, work backstage, or volunteer in the front of house. Because it is a theatre housed in a park and performed outside (the audience sits on chairs on the lawn) animals sometimes visit, and other unpredictable things can happen. The theatre itself was built in 1934 and the design was based on the Hollywood Bowl. It is the only one of its kind in Canada, and has the only outdoor raked stage, which helped when the producers of "Singing in the Rain" wanted real rain to fall on stage.

How would you compare your life today to the lives of those studied in your project?

Cecilia and Roger Smith and others were young adults with other paying "day" jobs when they started the modern day TUTS in 1969. Being a kid and all, I can't exactly start my own musical theatre company today because I don't have the money, I'm still in school and musical theatre requires a lot of time and money. However I belong to a kids theatre community where some parents have recently formed and are currently shaping a non-profit musical theatre society which will produce shows for kids like me to perform. My life compares to that of Roger and Cecilia because I am in a musical theatre group that is non-profit and I have opportunities to be in shows and a theatre community.