BUS STOP THEATRE: THREAT OF CLOSURE

THE SPEAKER « » : The honourable member for Dartmouth North.

BUS STOP THEATRE: THREAT OF CLOSURE - GOV'T. RESPOND

SUSAN LEBLANC « » : Mr. Speaker, today is World Theatre Day and I rise to voice my support for the Bus Stop Theatre. In his book, The Empty Space, Director Peter Brook states, "I can take any empty space and call it a bare stage."

The Bus Stop began in 2003 as a boarded-up pharmacy on a then dilapidated lot on Gottingen Street. Since its founders saw the potential in its empty space, countless artists from diverse communities have walked, crawled, wheeled, danced, and rolled through it bringing it to life and transforming it into a vital performance and meeting space; a place where people have come to engage with art and with each other. Thousands of people have laughed, wept, been challenged to consider new ideas, discovered secrets, uncovered truths, and maybe even fallen in love within its walls.

The Bus Stop, like many affordable and well-used spaces before it is now under threat of closure and if it does, it will be a devastating blow to an already vulnerable population of artists in Nova Scotia.

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Something must happen to save the Bus Stop Theatre and to ensure it continues to be an anchor for art and culture in our province. Our government must show leadership in this essential endeavour.

THE SPEAKER « » : The honourable member for Chester-St. Margaret's.