A Time to Be Grateful
It’s coming on Christmas 2022 and there is much, much to be grateful for – including the many collaborative contributions of the fine members of the Delta Stageworks group of artists. One of them is Cory Haas:
It was early in 2020 when Delta Stageworks emerged from an idea we’d been thinking about for a few years into reality: a local theatre company that brings together professional actors together with members of the community to create shows and offer public performing arts programs.
One of the artists we reached out to help bring our vision into fruition was the young director and devised theatre maker Cory Haas. Cory was back in Canada from the UK where we knew he’d been studying and exploring devised theatre and other performance curious processes. We had a sense he would be a huge asset to the company as we brought people together and embarked on a process of creating a new devised show we’d been researching.
Then, in March of 2020 Covid arrived and stood all the plans we’d had in the works on their head. We’d assembled a great groups of artists and community members, but now what? Enter the theatrical pivot. With Cory’s input we shifted to an exploration of the reality of pandemic life we were all going through. It involved a workshop process none of us had ever encountered – being masked, many people only able to attend workshops via Zoom, adapting theatre making techniques to social distancing. It was – as the saying goes – the best of times and it was the worst of times as we devised the show Then & Now, Pandemic Life Stories, from community interviews and our lived experiences, never being quite sure if audiences would ever actually see the show live. And throughout the journey, Cory’s input into our growth as a company, and as artists, was instrumental. The show did get in front of an audience in 2021 and this year, Cory has also facilitated the devised theatre workshops for Heirlooms & Baggage (My Mother’s Story).
Two years on from its inception, Cory will be leaving Delta Stageworks in January of 2023 to take on the artistic direction of Theatre La Seizieme, Vancouver’s French theatre company. As a company we wish him so much good fortune in his work with the French-language artist group he’s been associated with for a number of years. His work with us has been an enormous creative gift that we will be forever grateful for.