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Thursday, September 24, 2015

Stratford Festival announces benefit performance of The Last Wife to raise funds for Syrian refugee crisis

September 22, 2015… The Stratford Festival is offering a unique opportunity to see the season’s hottest ticket, The Last Wife, and provide humanitarian aid to the Syrian refugee crisis that is dominating headlines.

A special benefit performance of Kate Hennig’s stunning contemporary drama The Last Wife – sold out from the beginning of its run – will be presented at the Studio Theatre on Friday, October 9, at 8 p.m.

“The Festival is blessed with a team of caring individuals,” said Executive Director Anita Gaffney. “Our artists, crew and staff wanted to help with the Syrian refugee crisis, and adding a performance of The Last Wife allows us to do what we do best – tell a compelling story at the highest level of accomplishment. At the same time, it satisfies some pent-up demand for this particular title and most importantly serves to provide some leadership on the fundraising activities unfolding in Stratford.”

The Stratford Festival was approached by Stratford Mayor Dan Mathieson to help with fundraising activities to sponsor the resettlement of a number of Syrian families to the Stratford area. The net proceeds from this performance will be donated to the Mennonite Central Committee, which has successfully brought refugees to Canada since 1979. Government agencies are also introducing a matching funds program. 

“The Syrian refugee crisis has captured the hearts and minds of people around the world, including here in Stratford, where many individuals and groups have stepped forward wanting to find the best way to help,” said Mayor Mathieson. “This benefit performance is a great way to use the arts to support humanity, and a terrific start to our fundraising campaign.”

Only 260 tickets are available, priced from $100 to $250. Call the Stratford Festival box office at 1.800.567.1600 or visit www.stratfordfestival.ca/benefit  to order and support this important cause.

The benefit will also include the auction of a Stratford Festival treasure: one of the original carousel horses from the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical Carousel. The carousel was designed by Douglas Paraschuk, who in addition to designing dozens of visually arresting Festival productions also designed the opening and closing ceremonies for the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics. Working from that inspiration, Prop Master Ken Dubblestyne created the spectacular crystalline horses that form the dazzling centrepiece of this production. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to own this theatrical masterpiece.

The combined Stratford and area committee will be arranging a number of charitable opportunities in the coming weeks. Details of a public forum to be held on October 29 will be announced soon.  


Stratford Festival 55 Queen Street PO Box 520 Stratford ON | N5A 6V2
Box Office: Toll Free 1.800.567.1600 Local 519.273.1600

2015 Season | April to October
Hamlet | The Taming of the Shrew | Love’s Labour’s Lost| The Adventures of Pericles
The Sound of Music | Carousel | The Diary of Anne Frank | She Stoops to Conquer 
The Physicists | Oedipus Rex | The Alchemist | Possible Worlds | The Last Wife

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