The Persephone Theatre celebrated a full decade at River Landing on Monday, unveiling a new history wall to commemorate the milestone.
Theatre supporters gathered over the lunch hour for the unveiling, raising a toast of white wine to the occasion.
“It makes me feel old,” current Shakespeare on the Sask. Director Alan Long.
“It doesn’t seem like that long ago I was doing a show here.”
Persephone moved into the Remai Arts Centre, located on Second Avenue beside the new Remai Modern Art Gallery, in 2007. Their first public show opened on Dec. 11 of that year.
Founded in 1974, the theatre company had moved around often in their early years. At times they called the Mendel Art Gallery, University of Saskatchewan’s Greystone Theatre and St. Thomas Wesley Church home.
The moving stopped in 1987, when the group acquired Westgate Alliance Church. They stayed in the building until the Remai Arts Centre was completed.
Artistic Director Del Surjik said their history wall had detailed that past already, but the new boards will immortalize the last decade.
“A theatre is nothing if not its artists and its shows,” he said.
“It shows a hint … a Where’s Waldo where you can look for something different every time.”
Kent Allen, a 35-year veteran of Persephone Theatre, said the history wall brings back a lot of memories.
“It’s a way to look back at my own life,” the experienced actor said. “It’s very gratifying, and a bit humbling.”
He noted the theatre company has come a long way since he started, in large part due to community members like Ellen Remai backing them.
“Fortunately in Saskatoon we’ve had the support of individuals who’ve made sure that this sort of artistic enterprise is available to the people,” he said. The theatre isn’t done either.
“This wall has room for about another 15 or 20 years,” Surjik said.