Stratford Festival 2019 Opening Week, in Stratford, Ontario, is an exciting time and we are fortunate, living in Stratford, to be so close to all the happenings. The Stratford Festival is the home of the largest repertory theatre in North America. In the 2019 season, the line up is spectacular, with plays and musicals for everyone. The Festival Garden Party and the following Opening Night extravaganza at the Festival Theatre were opportunities for us to join the fun. How lucky we are to meet the actors, choreographers, directors, backstage artists, supporters, and festival officials. To experience their energy and their love of theatre. We take every opportunity to tell everyone we meet how much we love and appreciate Stratford and the Stratford Festival, especially the history of the Festival that has created this incredible, arts-filled community. The flowers in the gardens are spectacular, too.


Tulips in the Arthur Meighen Gardens, ready to take a bow

Stratford Festival Garden Party

Executive Director

The Cooking Ladies with Anita Gaffney, Stratford Festival Executive Director

Artistic Director

The Cooking Ladies with Antoni Cimolino, Stratford Festival Artistic Director


Michelle Boniface (left) and Lamont (right) tell Gabi Epstein (Audrey) and Vanessa Sears (Ronnette) how wonderful they are in Little Shop of Horrors


The Cooking Ladies with E.B. Smith, our neighbour, who plays Montano in Othello

Chair of Board

Sylvia Chrominska, Chair of the Board of Governors of the Stratford Festival, chats with Nolen Dubuc (Billy Elliot) in Billy Elliot The Musical


The Cooking Ladies with Nolen Dubuc (Billy Elliot)  and Colton Curtis (Older Billy) in Billy Elliot The Musical

Billy's mother

Lamont sharing the love with Vanessa Sears (Billy’s mother) and Colton Curtis (Older Billy) from Billy Elliot The Musical

Stratford Festival 2019 Opening Night

Opening Night

Lights are on at the Stratford Festival Theatre Opening Night


Phyllis with Nigel Shawn Williams, Othello Director and The Cooking Ladies’ neighbour


The 2019 Stratford Festival season officially opens with Othello, directed by Nigel Shawn Williams

On Guard

Standing on Guard on the red carpet


Stratford Police Pipes and Drums


Lyndsay Morrison, CTV Kitchener, interviews Othello Director Nigel Shawn Williams


Ann Swerdfager, Stratford Festival Publicity Director

Limousines arrive and the cast of Billy Elliot The Musical adds their energy to the Opening Night red carpet.


The paparazzi in positon


Donna Feore, Director and Choreographer of Billy Elliot The Musical, surrounded by cast members


Donna Feore with Billy Elliot The Musical cast


The boys in Billy Elliot The Musical loving the red carpet


The girls in Billy Elliot The Musical on the red carpet

Actors' pose

Marion Adler (Grandma Elliot) surrounded by Billy Elliot The Musical cast


Nolen Dubuc with Colton Curtis, Billy younger and older


Colm Feore with Nolen Dubuc


Donna Feore with Nolen Dubuc and family


Colm Feore catching Donna Feore, Nolen Dubuc and family


Colm Feore and Nolen Dubuc’s mother on the paparazzi side of the camera


Photo credit: Scott Wishart.  Lamont photo bombing Colm Feore


The Opening Night fanfare invites everyone to take their seats


Othello officially opens the 2019 Stratford Festival season

In the last few weeks, we have seen Othello, Billy Elliot, The Merry Wives of Windsor,  Private Lives, and Little Shop of Horrors. With them we have laughed uproariously, cried unabashedly, clapped appreciatively, and reflected upon the recurrent theme of the position of women, past and present. We have become Stratford Festival fans, planning to see these productions at least one more time over the summer. Now that we’ve met so many of the people involved, how can we not?


Billy Elliot playbill


The Merry Wives of Windsor playbill


Private Lives Playbill


Little Shop of Horrors playbill