Our Divas Do Christmas
Our Divas return to the stage to the delight of one and all! The Herald speaks with director, Terri Andrews about this year’s exciting stage extravaganza.
MEET THE TALENT
Featuring a who’s who of Newfoundland and Labradors artistic community including returning favourites Kelly-Ann Evans, Tessa Crosbie, Abra Whitney, Adrien Doucette and countless others, and renowned newcomers Craig Sharpe, Jordan Coaker, Amy Wilson and more, over 150 talented performers are assembled for an event that must be seen to be truly believed.
“It’s more than a concert, it’s a fully staged concert,” shares Our Divas director Terri Andrews. “Anything that you would do for a large scale musical production you have to do for this one.”
From small children to adults and seniors, there’s something for everyone in the Our Divas Do Christmas extravaganza. Some of the highlights of this years event include a commemorative tribute to the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Beaumont Hamel entitled Christmas in The Trenches, Canadian Idol veteran Craig Sharpe joining the Divas Children and Youth choirs for the segment Nous Sommes Les Enfants and of course the beloved Divas kick-line among other highlights.
SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE
“There are companies who will have this as their staff Christmas party, or the grandmother who will take her little grandchild to see the show. There are a lot of different types of people and we’re cognizant of that,” Andrews shared. “That’s why we try to make sure that in these segments that we do that there’s something for everyone. We may have a hip hop song in the same show as classical song. There is something for everyone in it.”
The incomparable Sheilagh Guy Murphy has hosted Our Divas for 12 years, and maintains that it continues to be a thrill to work with such an amazing cast and crew.
“It’s exciting and extravagant. The energy and talent never ceases to amaze,” shared Guy Murphy.
“Audiences are in for a spectacular new show this year.”
Our Divas have constantly strived to reinvent itself year after year, making a conscious effort to continue to add new content and talented cast, while consciously drawing back to old favourites.
OUR DIVAS DELIVER
“We try to keep it current for the kids and the families,” Andrews said. “We will have some of our tried and true people, people who have been in a lot of shows since the beginning. They’re as much part of the Divas organization as anything, but every year we have a lot of new people as well, so we keep it fresh that way. This year there’s a lot of new content in it.”
While Our Divas deliver on a long-standing promise to amaze and entertain, an added element of the mandate of the organization has always been to give back to the community.
“Divas gives to the community, not only with the showcasing some of the best talent in the world but through its funding of community projects,” Guy Murphy says proudly.
In past years Our Divas has been proud to support various organizations and charities including The Autism Centre, The Military Families Fund, The Tommy Sexton Centre and others.
This year Our Divas supports the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the “B” Division Fallen Members Fund. The Fund was created to assist those who want to attend the funeral of a peace officer/RCMP member whose death is duty related. Through the Fund they can receive assistance to attend the funeral and lay a wreath on behalf of our police family in Newfoundland and Labrador.
The show will not only provide a monetary donation to the fund, but also pay homage with the very special on-stage tribute, which includes Constable John Andrews and the Divas Choir.
“When Divas was first conceived we had kind of a duel mandate,” Andrews explains. “We did the first one to help raise money for the Autism Centre, and we raised a lot of money. It was down at Mile One and it was full venue. Part of our mandate was to give back to the community and the other part was to put Newfoundland and Labrador performers on the stage in a huge show and surround them with a production that shows a local audience what they do when they’re on stage and what they can do in New York or Toronto or Italy that we can do it at home.
“We have a dual responsibility to the artistic community and the artists that are with us as well as the community at large,” Andrews adds. “I think we manage to balance that.”
Our Divas runs from Dec. 1-3 at the Arts and Culture Centre in St. John’s. Tickets are available at the box office and online at artsandculturecentre.com