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Fun, fresh Romeo + Juliet sparkles onstage

A contemporary Romeo and Juliet sizzles with action and romance, kicking off Trinity Western University's anniversary season of theatre (Photo: Danny Hsiao)

A contemporary Romeo + Juliet sizzles with action
and romance, kicking off Trinity Western University's
anniversary season of theatre (Photo: Danny Hsiao)

Romance, rebellion, and class rivalry sizzle in TWU’s contemporary production of Romeo and Juliet, playing October 18-29. Rediscover the humour, humanity, and hope in this classic tale of star-crossed lovers who dare to imagine that things could be different. Shakespeare’s profoundly human tragedy hits close to home in a refreshing, West Coast-inspired setting.

“If you’re looking for Shakespeare you can sleep through…better skip this one!” jokes Cloverdale’s Mark Fleming, also known as Romeo. The Clayton Heights Secondary grad, who was recently accepted into SAMC Theatre’s BFA Acting program at TWU, says he had no idea the Bard could be so much fun.

“I thought I knew this story, but I never imagined it could feel so much like real life,” Mark explains. “Kids in leather jackets, bantering over a game of pool. The guy in the argyle sweater who your parents think is a ‘good catch.’ The stereotypes you accept simply because everyone else in your group does. Why do the Capulets and Montagues hate each other? Do they ever actually stop and think about it?”

Langley’s Angela Konrad directs the timeless tragedy on the heels of her last project, prison drama Jesus Hopped The A-Train with Glass City Theatre, which won multiple Jessie Awards in Vancouver this summer. Konrad is thrilled to explore a love story this time around and illuminate all of its beauty, grace, and humour.

“It’s not just about young love, there are so many kinds of love woven through it,” says Konrad. “Friends and mentors risking everything for each other. Husband and wife trying to do the right thing. The story is remarkably current, and affecting. It’s been fascinating to dive into a classic work and find so many contemporary parallels. These are people who live in our neighbourhood. They aren’t stuffy, strange-talking literary creations, they’re real and familiar.”

BFA actors Mark Fleming and Sarah Ruth star as the star-crossed lovers. Costumes are designed by Sabrina Evertt, set by Omanie Elias, and lighting by Nicole Bach.

Playing October 18-29, Tuesday through Saturday at 7:30pm with Saturday matinees at 2pm. Tickets range from $7 to $16 with 2-for-1 Tuesdays and special weeknight discounts. For show information and tickets, visit or email

Author: Diana Squires
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