Schmooze Productions is staging a production of the American musical ‘Hair’ at the Harbour City Theatre starting on Nov. 2. (Josef Jacobson/The News Bulletin)

Schmooze Productions is bringing ‘Hair’ to the Harbour City Theatre

Artistic director Dean Chadwick says ’60s issues still relevant today

The American musical Hair captures a moment in the late 1960s when young people struggled to reject war, racism and a seemingly indifferent establishment.

Schmooze Productions artistic director Dean Chadwick said those are issues that are still being felt today.

“I really wish it did feel dated, but honestly everything that is talked about in this show I think is prevalent in our society in one way or another. We’ve certainly got drug addiction problems like we’ve never seen before, the political climate, the racism, yeah, it’s all there and, unfortunately, very real and in the moment,” he said.

Chadwick said he “fell in love” with the musical after seeing it on London’s West End seven years ago. This fall he chose to stage Hair himself, attracted by its ensemble nature and relevant social commentary.

“It really seemed like the right political show to just remind people that this isn’t new and we haven’t changed as far or as much as we’d like to,” he said.

He said the cast, and the show, came together quickly. The show comes to the Harbour City Theatre stage starting Nov. 2.

“We built this as a tribe, so it’s been a really organic kind of a fostering of this show. I didn’t want to come in as a director and go, ‘OK, now you’re doing this and now you’re doing that.’ It doesn’t work that way,” Chadwick said.

“It’s been a little bit slower process but [we’re] really growing scenes and creating as we go and it’s a pretty amazing piece. A lot of different characters doing different things and being in the moment all the time because they really don’t leave the stage for any significant amount of time. They’re always on stage.”

Staying true to the original production, Schmooze’s Hair will feature nudity and attendance is therefore restricted to those over 18. In another nod to the era, audience members in the balcony are asked to bring their own pillows on which to sit.

Chadwick said audiences will pick up on the continuing message of Hair, even though the musical was first performed 50 years ago.

“I think people are really going to dig it when they get here. They’re going to be enveloped by the vibe of the ’60s and the music and the people and the love and the environment and the political ramifications that happened then and notice how much they relate to what’s happening in our political climate today and in our world today,” he said.

“I think people are really going to have a great time and relive some moments that probably some of them don’t even remember, so they might get a new perspective on their past lives. And if they’ve never experienced the ’60s, this is the show to do it and really feel what it was like.”

WHAT’S ON…Schmooze Productions production of Hair at the Harbour City Theatre Nov 2 to 4, 9 to 11, 16 to 18 at 7:30 p.m. and Nov. 5 and 12 at 2 p.m. Admission is $29.40 for reserved floor seats and $12.60 for bring-your-own-pillow balcony seating. Show is restricted to those over 18.



arts@nanaimobulletin.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Nanaimo NightOwls will play ball under the lights next season

West Coast League baseball club unveils its team name

COVID-19 pandemic estimated to lead to $2-million loss for RDN Transit

Regional District of Nanaimo has been seeing gradual rider increase since mid-May

Beefs & Bouquets, July 15

To submit a beef or a bouquet to the Nanaimo News Bulletin, e-mail editor@nanaimobulletin.com

Shop window art show explores COVID-19, the Black Death and the Renaissance

Rotating ‘Renewal’ exhibition coming to Arbutus Books display window in August

Speed limit on Nanaimo’s Georgia Avenue will be lowered to 30km/h

Lower speed limit, traffic calming part of a package of roadway reallocation measures

21 new COVID-19 cases confirmed in B.C. as virus ‘silently circulates’ in broader community

Health officials urge British Columbians to enjoy summer safely as surge continues

Tough time for tree fruits as some B.C. farm products soar

Province reports record 2019 sales, largely due to cannabis

‘Let’s all do a self-check’: Okanagan mayor reacts to racist vandalism targeting local family

Home of Indo-Canadian family in Summerland was targeted on evening of July 13

Province agrees to multimillion-dollar payout for alleged victims of Kelowna social worker

Robert Riley Saunders is accused of misappropriating funds of children — often Indigenous — in his care

Feds fund safe drug supply pilot program for Cowichan

The opioid overdose crisis continues to be one of the most serious public health crises

B.C. businessman David Sidoo gets 3 months behind bars for college admissions scam

Sidoo was sentenced for hiring someone take the SATs in place of his two sons

PHOTOS: Inside a newly-listed $22M mega-mansion on ALR land in B.C.

The large home, located on ALR land, is one of the last new mansions to legally be built on ALR land

Thousands of dollars in stolen rice found in B.C. warehouse

Police raid seizes $75,000 in ‘commercial scale’ theft case

City building cycle lane on Departure Bay Road, walking lane on Boxwood

Nanaimo council approves three active transportation projects totalling $170,000

Most Read