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Steel Magnolias

Halifax’s Theatre Arts Guild kicks-off its 2013-2014 season tomorrow night (September 19) with Steel Magnolias, the warm and witty story of six women who come together out of tragedy. Recently AE spoke with Director Nick Jupp about the production.

What inspired you to get involved with theatre?
Director Nick Jupp
As a child I knew my father was an occasional amateur actor but I never saw him on stage. My own children were involved with the Neptune Theatre School and we live on the same street as Theatre Arts Guild so all the circumstances were right to get me started.

Are they the same reasons that you do it today?
Not at all, it's now a hobby that has allowed me to try several technical activities, design work, acting and directing. The range of interesting activities is enormous.

How did you get involved with Steel Magnolias?
The play was submitted to the Theatre Arts Guild selection committee with my name attached as a willing director.

What are the challenges of putting the production together?
Getting the right people for a myriad of jobs is the single greatest challenge. If any aspect of a production is not done with enthusiasm the shortcomings will show. This applies to all the technical, marketing, budget, set and stage work.

What are the rewards?
A theatrical production is one of the world's greatest puzzles. Starting with words on paper and ending with an audience in front of a stage full of actors is an intricate journey completed with a fixed deadline. Solving the puzzle is incredibly rewarding.

What can audiences expect during the run?
They will see six excellent actors, a beautiful and interesting set and great sound and lights all coming together for an wonderfully entertaining show.

What are your thoughts on the state of theatre in Atlantic Canada?
It seems to be growing and quite secure. The amount of original work being produced also seems to be increasing which is excellent for our playwrights.

What can we be doing better?
Support for the arts is strong in Halifax but it could always improve. I suppose simply going to more live theatre and expanding audiences would be an excellent grass roots thing to do.

What's next on your theatrical agenda?
I have a new play completed (Order in the House) and will be spending some time and effort to get it onto a stage.

Steel Magnolias
September 19-October 5, 2013 at the Pond Playhouse in Halifax
For show times and ticket information please visit

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