Ô Canada, vous êtes belle! (September 2015)

O Canada, you are beautiful!

Recently, I had the privilege of traveling to Stratford, Canada for their annual Stratford Shakespeare Festival in which a troupe of actors perform roughly fourteen productions over the course of 6-8 months. Enthusiasts from all over the country, and world, go to Stratford to enjoy quality entertainment. (We met a couple that has come to Stratford for the past 20 consecutive years!) Please enjoy some photos from my trip and at the end, I’ll provide a link in which you can check out this tradition and hopefully take part in supporting this festival. (My fellow thespians would adore the creative interpretations breathed into each reenactment!)

Canada Bound! It’s incredible soaring above the clouds and feeling as if you’re jumping from one to the next.

Flight going

Below are the programs I saved from each performance I saw. What I love about Stratford’s programs is that they not only include the face of each cast member and information about each person’s acting experiences, but also a note from the director and an extensive explanation about the history and original playwright.

Programs

My grandparents and I stayed at a Bed & Breakfast called the Crown House in the residential areas. On the first day, we were able to eat breakfast outside, because the sun’s glimmering rays warmed the porch which made for a beautiful morning meal on the patio! The bottom picture is the front of our Bed & Breakfast. It was so quaint!

Outside Breakfast at BBBreakfast with GrampsBB

Stratford is a small town and hasn’t grown much over the years. History was ever present, and I loved visiting coffee places, little shops, and a WWII memorial that had been erected. It was all so lovely!

BuildingBalzac'sBalzac's pavilionMemorialCity HallTown

Along the street away from the Crown House was the “Shakespearean Gardens”. There were so many colorful flowers, stone walkways, and vibrant green grass and shrubs. The Avon River swam along the bank and under an arch bridge. An enchanting garden pavilion was encircled by more greenery. Additionally, there were benches and small structures memorialized for loved ones, a bust of Shakespeare himself, a charming schoolhouse, and photographers snapping away with their fancy equipment. Not pictured below was a super sappy couple photo shoot. They made googly-eyed poses in front of the directing photographer which, to me, was kind of awkward. Haha. Anyway, I’d love to have such a lovely garden in my backyard to stroll, paint, have tea/coffee parties and read!

Front of gardensBustWalkway with flowersAvon River BridgeYellow flowersGrandparents and GardenPavilionS GardenSchool houseSh Garden

Spectators were not allowed to take any camera or video footage while a performance was in action, but I was able to capture a few shots of the stage before one began. My favorite set piece was a glittering carousel featured in Carousel. The pieces all had wheels, were rolled in formation, and started spinning on a rotating part of the stage. It was incredible! Below are photos of the theaters, my grandparents (and I) waiting for shows, and beautiful scenery on the premises.

CaroselGramps waitingAlchemist Caroseul  Festival T FTGarden skyviewHamlet StageMeal at FTSideviewStoops to ConquerTaming of ShrewThe PhysicistsTom PTom Patterson

These photos are merely things I found fascinating or cute. (Aren’t the little T-shirts with imprinted costumes on them adorable?! Too bad I don’t have a child yet.) My grandparents and I visited a shop that sold indigenous art, hence the Native American painting. A metal statue of Shakespeare was featured in the Festival Theatre’s garden. The last picture features some Canadian money that was strange looking.

Lady Shakespeare Lord Shakespeare  Native Artwork   Shakespeare Money

I took an aerial shot from the airplane while flying back to Atlanta. It’s fantastic having a sky-view perspective of the land beneath; it reminded me of those mock-up sets people build with tiny little people, buildings, and cars. Isaiah 40:22 popped into my head that reads”it is He [God] that sitteth upon the circle of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers…” And yet God still knows all the thoughts, intents, words, and actions of each and every human being. That’s astounding.

Flight home

real As promised, here is the link to the Stratford Festival. Enjoy! http://www.stratfordfestival.ca/

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