Welcome (back) to OUTstages: Curator’s Note

After a fully digital program last year, it feels so good to be welcoming you back to the theatre safely for this year’s edition of cutting-edge queer art. The ability to share stories face-to-face, together in the theatre, is a balm for my weary queer soul, and I’m sure it is for yours. OUTstages turns 8 this year, and I feel so lucky to have been steering it from the beginning. I am thrilled to share the work of some of the country’s leading queer artists with you, alongside new work from local theatre-makers. I love the collision of ideas that happen at a festival, when audiences meet artists from near and far, and their view of the world and what is possible is opened up. That’s what makes our work at Intrepid so unique and special to me. I hope you agree!

The programming at this edition of OUTstages is a celebration, it’s full of joy, and I think we could all use some more joy in our lives after the last two years. We are welcoming you back with a joy-filled festival! There will still be big ideas and these shows ask big questions about the world and how we walk in it, but there’s also pop music, wild antics and new experiences, plus a free mid-festival pop-up drag show at our newest sponsor, The Vicious Poodle!

Get ready to yell BINGO, go on a heart-breaking journey of pop stardom, lay back and let a soundscape wash over you, celebrate Indigenous excellence with musical theatre creator Corey Payette, and see a brand new work from OUTstages Residency Artist Kerri Flannigan. Get ready to heat up your winter at OUTstages!

Sean Guist

Artistic Director

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of the Lekwungen People, now known as the Songhees and Esquimalt Nations.