Buddies in Bad Times Theatre kicks of its 40th anniversary season this September with the return of an audience favourite, Gertrude and Alice, originally co-produced by Buddies and the Independent Aunties in 2016. Critically-acclaimed, nominated for three Dora Mavor Moore Awards (outstanding new play, performance – ensemble, and costume design), and recently published by Playwrights Canada Press, this beloved story of Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas returns to the Buddies stage with a new production design by celebrated visual artist Sherri Hay.

Visiting the audience in the present day, contentious and influential writer Gertrude Stein and her partner, Alice B. Toklas, come to find out how history has treated them. The couple recounts stories of their 40-year marriage, of meetings with iconic artists and writers, of their taste-making collection of early modernist paintings, and of Alice’s overwhelming, consuming devotion to Gertrude’s genius. Before they leave, they want to find out how their lives and work are – or are not – remembered.

Evalyn Parry, artistic director of Buddies and co-creator of the piece, comments, “We usher in Buddies 40th season with a play that, fittingly, explores the nature of queer artistic legacy. Gertrude and Alice brings to the stage the work of a deeply influential, experimental and transgressive lesbian artist, and also a legendary queer love story.”

With a new production design by visionary artist Sherri Hay, the set becomes a character of its own. As our queer heroes chart their influence and legacy in their own artistic moment, the 21st century art installation in which they find themselves evolves at an almost-imperceptible yet constant pace, creating a stunning visual metaphor for the questions the play explores.

Gertrude and Alice
Buddies in Bad Times Theatre
September 15 until October 7, 2018
Tickets from PWYC up to $40
Box Office 416-975-8555

Photo of Gertrude and Alice (Evalyn Parry and Anna Chatterton) by Tanja Tiziana

About the Author

Raymond Helkio is an author, director and award-winning filmmaker. As a graduate from the Ontario College of Art & Design he cofounded The Reading Salon and is a Canadian Ambassador for the Moral Courage Project. Find him on Facebook.