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Company History

At its inception under Founding Artistic Director Peter Mandia in 1973, Theatre Aquarius performed primarily at the Studio Theatre at Hamilton Place. The demand for Professional Theatre within the city proved to be tremendous, and it rapidly became apparent that the needs of the company necessitated a larger venue. Thanks to a tremendous effort of many committed believers and the generosity of businesses, private donors and government agencies, in 1991, Theatre Aquarius opened the doors of its own theatre centre, now known as the Dofasco Centre for the Arts.

Opening night Dofasco Centre
Peter Mandia & Stephen Newman, founding artistic team, September
1991 at The ribbon cutting ceremony for Theatre Aquarius' new home

Theatre Aquarius launched the Performing Arts Programme, a theatre school for ages 8 and up in 1976. The Programme has run continuously, providing thousands of young people throughout the region with a chance to participate in the theatre arts at a high level, launching many to professional careers in the arts and providing many more with new confidence that helped them reach their dreams, and helping to instill a lifelong love of theatre.


Other key milestones:

1988

- The School Board liaison program was instituted, which grew to serve more than 16,000 students annually.

1996

- Max Reimer was appointed Artistic Director following the untimely passing of Peter Mandia, Founding Artistic Director.

1997

- Theatre Aquarius received a Lieutenant Governor's Award for Business Excellence in the Arts.

2005

- Theatre Aquarius received the Hamilton Chamber of Commerce Outstanding Business Achievement Award

2008

- Theatre Aquarius received Tourism Hamilton's Arts & Entertainment Ambassador Award.

2008

- Ron Ulrich was appointed Artistic Director.

2009

- Tuesdays with Morrie starring Jamie Farr sets the record for the highest grossing box office for a non-musical play at Theatre Aquarius.

2010

- The Rocky Horror Show starring Cameron MacDuffee becomes the highest grossing Theatre Aquarius show of all time.

2011

- Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story, starring Hamilton’s own Jeff Giles shatters the box-office record set the year earlier, to become the highest-grossing, best-attended Theatre Aquarius production yet.


Past Seasons

  • Season 41 - 2013-14

    THE MOUSETRAP
    KIM'S CONVENINECE
    THE SOUND OF MUSIC
    DRIVING MISS DAISY
    CABARET
    TRIBES

  • Season 40 - 2012-13

    SEE HOW THEY RUN
    WHERE THE BLOOD MIXES
    TOP OF THE POPS!
    THE LAST ROMANCE
    LEGALLY BLONDE: THE MUSICAL
    TIME STANDS STILL

  • Season 39 - 2011-12

    SHERLOCK HOLMES:THE FINAL ADVENTURE
    QUEEN MILLI OF GALT
    POODLE SKIRTS TO PLATFORM SHOES
    PITMEN PAINTERS
    WINGFIELD: LOST & FOUND
    THE FULL MONTY

  • Season 38 - 2010-11

    THE 39 STEPS
    THE BEST OF THE FRINGE
    EDUCATING RITA
    A CHRISTMAS CAROL: THE MUSICAL
    DINNER WITH FRIENDS
    BITTERGIRL
    FOR THIS MOMENT ALONE
    SHARRON'S BIG BROADWAY SHOW
    BUDDY: THE BUDDY HOLLY STORY

  • Season 37 - 2009-10

    THE DIARY OF ANNE FRANK
    HALF LIFE
    THE BEST OF THE FRINGE
    IRVING BERLIN’S WHITE CHRISTMAS
    TUESDAYS WITH MORRIE
    SWEET DREAMS: A TRIBUTE TO PATSY CLINE
    DOUBT: A PARABLE
    THE IMPROVISED PLAY SERIES
    THE ROCKY HORROR SHOW
    DISNEY’S HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL

  • Season 36 - 2008-09

    THE WOMAN IN WHITE
    MENDING FENCES
    IN A WORLD CREATED BY A DRUNKEN GOD
    OLIVER!
    TORONTO, MISSISSIPPI
    LAUGHTON COMMON / CHAPLIN: ABOUT FACE
    HAVING HOPE AT HOME
    TOAD: THE ANNA RUSSELL STORY
    FOREVER PLAID
    HONK! JR.
    DEFENDING THE CAVEMAN

  • Season 35 - 2007-08

    OPENING NIGHT
    WINGFIELDS INFERNO
    ROPE'S END
    SEUSSICAL - THE MUSICAL
    THE PRICE
    FRIENDS OF MINE
    DREAMGIRLS
    YOU FANCY YOURSELF
    OVER THE RIVER & THROUGH THE WOODS
    MACHOMER
    THE PIED PIPER OF HAMELIN

  • Season 34 - 2006-07

    GLORYDAYS!
    SEXY LAUNDRY
    AMADEUS
    BLOOD BROTHERS
    LOOKING
    LUCIEN SNOWBIRD
    SUSAN GILMOUR: THE LADY SINGS THE TUNES
    ELEANOR OF AQUITAINE: MOTHER OF THE PRIDE
    CATS
    WISH UPON A STAR
    TREASURE ISLAND
    THE VAGINA MONOLOGUES

  • Season 33 - 2005-06

    COME BLOW YOUR HORN
    REAL ESTATE
    DIAL "M" FOR MURDER
    OKLAHOMA!
    THE LONG WEEKEND
    IRVING BERLIN ALWAYS
    QUIET! I'M TALKING
    SWIMMING WITH ENDORPHINS
    DISNEY'S BEAUTY AND THE BEAST
    BROADWAY BEAUTIES
    PINOCCHIO
    INHERIT THE WIND
    EVITA

  • Season 32 - 2004-05

    THE LOVE LIST
    UNITY (1918)
    THE SOUND OF MUSIC
    STRAWBERRIES IN JANUARY
    DEATH OF A SALESMAN
    I LOVE YOU, YOU'RE PERFECT, NOW CHANGE!
    ON GOLDEN POND
    TEST DRIVE
    WHOLE LOTTO LOVE
    WHAT YOU DON'T KNOW
    SWEENEY TODD

  • Season 31 - 2003-04

    JASPER STATION
    GOODBYE, PICCADILLY
    THE MUSIC MAN
    THE MYSTERY OF IRMA VEP
    THE WINSLOW BOY
    NOISES OFF
    GIVE MY REGARDS TO BROADWAY
    HERE ON THE FLIGHT PATH
    COME BY THE HILLS
    FINGERS AND TOES
    TOAD-!

  • Season 30 - 2002-03

    WAR BRIDES - THE MUSICAL
    FOR THE PLEASURE OF SEEING HER AGAIN
    PETER PAN - THE MUSICAL
    SYLVIA
    BLITHE SPIRIT
    THE FOURSOME
    MANGIA CAKE
    MARTIANS IN MY DRIVEWAY / THAT DOROTHY PARKER
    THE FOUR STARS
    THE LITTLE MATCH GIRL
    LES MISERABLES

  • Season 29 - 2001-02

    THE CRUCIBLE
    THE DRAWER BOY
    JOSEPH AND THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT
    JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR
    ART
    WUTHERING HEIGHTS
    SELF HELP
    CU'FU
    DISCO GOALIE
    DRIED FLOWERS/SEPARATE BEDS
    THE HOBBIT

  • Season 28 - 2000-01

    THE RAINMAKER
    ON ALBERT STREET
    JOSEPH AND THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT
    PICASSO AT THE LAPIN AGILE
    AN INSPECTOR CALLS
    OFFICE HOURS
    LAWRENCE & HOLLOMAN
    TOURIST TRAP
    I CAN SING! (CAN'T I?)
    CHARLOTTE'S WEB
    THE NUMBER 14

  • Season 27 - 1999-00

    HOW COULD YOU, MRS. DICK?
    2 PIANOS, 4 HANDS
    THE KING AND I
    BETWEEN PANCHO VILLA AND A NAKED WOMAN
    WHO HAS SEEN THE WIND
    THE LAST RESORT
    ALICE - THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS
    NOEL AND COLE
    A CHRISTMAS CAROL
    MINDLANDS

  • Season 26 - 1998-99

    COLOURS IN THE STORM
    OF MICE AND MEN
    GUNMETAL BLUES
    CINDERELLA
    THE COCKTAIL HOUR
    SIX DEGREES OF SEPARATION
    ETHAN CLAYMORE
    MOMENTS TO REMEMBER
    SHAKY GROUNDS / NEVER SWIM ALONE
    LORNE ELLIOT: COLLECTED MISTAKES II
    JEWEL

  • Season 25 - 1997-98

    MOON OVER BUFFALO
    AND THEN THERE WERE NONE
    SINNERS
    THE MIRACLE WORKER
    ROCK AND ROLL
    ANNE OF GREEN GABLES
    GUN METAL BLUES
    THE TWO-HEADED ROOMMATE
    TWO SHIPS PASSING

  • Season 24 - 1996-97

    THE FOREIGNER
    STEEL MAGNOLIAS
    THE WIZARD OF OZ
    JUPITER IN JULY
    THE HOUND OF THE BASKERVILLES
    AIN'T MISBEHAVIN'
    A CLOSER WALK WITH PATSY CLINE
    JACOB TWO-TWO MEETS THE HOODED FANG
    JEKYLL AND HYDE
    THE WILD GUYS
    BABE RUTH COMES TO PICKLE RIVER
    THE JIGSAW PUZZLE
    LOVIN', LYIN' & LEAVIN'

  • Season 23 - 1995-96

    CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF
    NOT ABOUT HEROES
    THE SOUND OF MUSIC
    IF WE ARE WOMAN
    THE HOUSE OF BLUE LEAVES
    WHO'S UNDER WHERE?
    TREASURE ISLAND
    FRONTERAS AMERICANAS
    INTO
    WRONG FOR EACH OTHER

  • Season 22 - 1994-95

    RUMOURS
    THE REZ SISTERS
    ANNIE
    FALLEN ANGELS
    CORPUS DELECTABLE
    NUNSENSE
    UNEXPECTED MOVES
    LUCIEN'S LABOUR LOST
    RAVE
    EDUCATING RITA
    THE AIRBORNE SYMPHONY

  • Season 21 - 1993-94

    THE DRESSER
    THE BLACK BONSPIEL OF WULLIE MacCRIMMON
    PETER PAN
    SHIRLEY VALENTINE
    NINE MONTHS
    LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS
    JACK'S GIANT ADVENTURE
    LUCIEN
    MIDNIGHT MADNESS
    SALT-WATER MOON

  • Season 20 - 1992-93

    A FUNNY THING HAPPENED ON THE WAY TO THE FORUM
    M. BUTTERFLY
    OLIVER!
    THE MOTOR TRADE
    MY CHILDREN! MY AFRICA
    LETTICE & LOVAGE
    ROBIN HOOD
    ABANDON HOPE MABEL DOROTHY
    HOSANNA
    BILLY BISHOP GOES TO WAR

  • Season 19 - 1991-92

    MAN OF LA MANCHA
    THE WOMAN IN BLACK
    A CHRISTMAS CAROL
    THE AFFECTIONS OF MAY
    ALL MY SONS
    LEND ME A TENOR
    CINDERELLA
    STEEL CRAZY

  • Season 18 - 1990-91

    YOU CAN'T TAKE IT WITH YOU
    THE DIARY OF ANNE FRANK
    THE KITE
    A WALK IN THE WOODS
    DRIVING MISS DAISY

  • Season 17 - 1989-90

    THE NIGHT OF THE IGUANA
    CECIL & CLEOPAYTRA
    DON MESSER'S JUBILEE
    THE ROAD TO MECCA
    BROADWAY BOUND

  • Season 16 - 1988-89

    GLORYDAYS!
    MERELY PLAYERS
    101 MIRACLES OF HOPE CHANCE
    SHERLOCK'S LAST CASE
    MY DARLING JUDITH

  • Season 15 - 1987-88

    WAITING FOR THE PARADE
    THE MELVILLE BOYS
    ORPHANS
    EINSTEIN
    TRAFFORD TANZI

  • Season 14 - 1986-87

    A STREET CAR NAMED DESIRE
    PAPERS
    A CHORUS LINE
    K2
    TALKING DIRTY
    BRIGHTON BEACH MEMOIRS

  • Season 13 - 1985-86

    BALCONVILLE
    SALT-WATER MOON
    NIGHT MOTHER
    McCLURE
    PRIVATE LIVES

  • Season 12 - 1984-85

    ARSENIC & OLD LACE
    AGNES OF GOD
    WEEK FOR LIFE AFRICAN BENEFIT
    A COUPLA WHITE CHICKS
    MASTER HAROLD & THE BOYS
    BLACK BONSPIEL OF WULLIE MacCRIMMON

  • Season 11 - 1983-84

    TALLEY'S FOLLEY
    BLITHE SPIRIT
    MASS APPEAL
    THE GLASS MENAGERIE
    REXY!

  • Season 10 - 1982-83

    WHO'S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOLF?
    BILLY BISHOP GOES TO WAR?
    OLIVER!
    VERONICA'S ROOM
    THE GIN GAME
    I DO! I DO!
    BILLY BISHOP
    OH MY STARS

  • Season 9 - 1981-82

    THE ELEPHANT MAN
    I'LL BE BACK BEFORE MIDNIGHT
    THE LION IN WINTER
    THE RAINMAKER
    I OUGHT TO BE IN PICTURES

  • Season 8 - 1980-81

    DEATHTRAP
    TRIBUTE
    THE PRICE
    CHAPTER TWO
    ON GOLDEN POND
    ROBIN HOOD

  • Season 7 - 1979-80

    INCREDIBLE MURDER OF CARDINAL TOSCA
    WAITING FOR THE PARADE
    JITTERS
    DEAR LIAR
    CHARLEY'S AUNT
    YOUNG KING ARTHUR
    TREASURE ISLAND

  • Season 6 - 1978-79

    A MAN FOR ALL SEASONS
    FREEDOM OF THE CITY
    CHRISTIE / KNEEBONE CABARET
    ALICE IN WONDERLAND
    SAME TIME NEXT YEAR
    THE SHADOW BOX
    TEN NIGHTS IN A BAR ROOM
    PINOCCHIO
    THE WIZARD OF OZ

  • Season 5 - 1977-78

    EQUUS
    ARSENIC & OLD LACE
    ROBIN HOOD
    YESTERDAY THE CHILDREN WERE DANCING
    SLEUTH
    OH, WHAT A LOVELY WAR!
    THE WIZARD OF OZ

  • Season 4 - 1976-77

    NEIGHBOURS - HPST
    CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF
    TWO FOR THE SEESAW
    SNOW WHITE & SEVEN DWARFS
    TO COVET HONOUR
    THE MOUSETRAP
    JACQUES BREL
    YOU'RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN

  • Season 3 - 1975-76

    THE AU PAIR MAN
    OF THE FIELDS, LATELY
    SOMEBODY LOVES ME
    ANTIGONE
    CINDERELLA
    DRACULA
    FRACTURED FAIRY TALES
    THE CARETAKER
    THE FANTASTICKS
    A SOLDIER'S TALE

  • Season 2 - 1974-75

    BOEING! BOEING!
    WHAT THE BUTLER SAW
    ANTIGONE
    RATTLE OF A SIMPLE MAN
    LEAVING HOME
    OUTCRY
    LUV

  • Season 1 - 1973-74

    HADRIAN VII
    CRUMPETS & TEA
    THE GINGERBREAD LADY
    GHOSTS
    I DO! I DO!
    FORTUNE & MEN'S EYES
    THE OWL & THE PUSSYCAT