Our Story

The Arts Club Theatre Company is the largest theatre company in Western Canada. Each year, over a quarter of a million people experience the best in professional theatre at its three venues: the Stanley Industrial Alliance Stage, Granville Island Stage, and Goldcorp Stage at the BMO Theatre Centre, as well as on tour throughout the province. Its popular productions range from musicals and contemporary comedies to new works and classics. The Arts Club also expands its audiences outside Vancouver through a three-show mini-season tour presented at venues around British Columbia. The 2018/2019 Arts Club season features six productions at the historic 650-seat Stanley Industrial Alliance Stage; five productions at the vibrant 440-seat Granville Island Stage; and four productions at the intimate 250-seat Goldcorp Stage at the BMO Theatre Centre.

The Arts Club of Vancouver was founded in 1958 as a private club for artists, musicians, and actors, and officially became the Arts Club Theatre in 1964 when the company opened its first stage, a converted gospel hall at Seymour Street and Davie. The company's twenty-seven years at Seymour Street are an important part of Vancouver and Canadian theatre history. The 250-seat stage helped launch the careers of Canadian talents such as Michael J. Fox, Bruce Greenwood, Ruth Nichol, Janet Wright, Winston Rekert, Lally Cadeau, Ann Mortifee, and Brent Carver, while introducing Vancouver to works by Canadian playwrights such as Michel Tremblay, David Freedman, and Carol Bolt. Productions by newcomers Sherman Snukal (Talking Dirty), Nicola Cavendish (It's Snowing on Saltspring), Morris Panych (7 Stories), and John Lazarus (The Late Blumer) also premiered there. The original Arts Club Seymour Street Stage was closed for demolition in 1991.

The company added the current Granville Island Stage in 1979, and the smaller Revue Stage next door in 1983. Innovative versions of classics such as Comedy of Errors; colourful Canadian hits such as Billy Bishop Goes to War; dramas like Frankie & Johnny in the Clair de Lune and comedies including Lend Me a Tenor, have brought the Granville Island Stage numerous awards and an excellent community following. The Revue Stage was home to some of Vancouver's all-time favourite musicals, revues, and comedies, including Ain't Misbehavin', before it was leased to the Vancouver Theatre Sports League in 1997. After an extensive renovation, the Revue Stage re-opened as an Arts Club venue in 2010 with the world premiere of Anosh Irani’s My Granny the Goldfish. After five more seasons there, the Arts Club moved the Revue Stage programming to the new Goldcorp Stage at the BMO Theatre Centre in Olympic Village. This innovative stage offers multiple seating configurations, such as thrust, proscenium, alley, and more. The Goldcorp Stage opened in November 2015 with Peter and the Starcatcher, and also housed the premiere production of Onegin in March 2016.

The Stanley Industrial Alliance Stage, in the South Granville neighbourhood, opened to the public with Dean Regan's record-setting production of Swing in October 1998, and it is now considered the company's flagship venue. An intimate version of a Broadway or London classic theatre, this elegant stage has permitted the company to move into the exciting arena of producing larger musicals, 20th-century classics, and acclaimed productions from around the world.

No history of the Arts Club would be complete without a mention of Bill Millerd. A graduate of the University of British Columbia and the National Theatre School, Bill first joined the Arts Club in 1969 as a stage manager and remained in the role of Artistic Managing Director from 1972 until his retirement in 2018. He was awarded the Order of Canada in 1994 for his contribution to Canadian theatre.

Artistic Director Emeritus
Bill Millerd

No history of the Arts Club would be complete without a mention of Bill Millerd, Artistic Director Emeritus. A graduate of the University of British Columbia and the National Theatre School, Bill first joined the Arts Club in 1969 as a stage manager and remained in the role of Artistic Managing Director from 1972 until his retirement in 2018. During his tenure, Bill expanded the company’s operations to include year-round programming and regional and national tours. Bill oversaw the construction of two theatres on Granville Island—the Granville Island Stage, in the fall of 1979, and the Revue Stage, in 1983—and the reopening of the historic Stanley Theatre, now the Stanley Industrial Alliance Stage, in 1998. Under Bill’s leadership, the company produced 500 plays, including more than 120 Canadian works. He was awarded the Order of Canada in 1994 for his contribution to Canadian theatre.

Annual Report

Read the Arts Club Theatre Company's 2018/2019 Annual Report for insights on the 2018/2019 season, including: production stats, financials, awards, and information on our youth education and new play development programs.

Board of Directors, Arts Club Theatre Company

Bryan Mabee
Vice President, Manager and Portfolio Manager National Bank Financial
Richard Bell
Immediate Past Chair
President, Bell Alliance, Lawyers & Notaries Public
John Dawson, FCPA, FCA
Accountant/ Business Advisor
Suzanne James, CPA, CA
Chief of Business Analytics, Connor, Clark & Lunn Financial Group
Mike Black
Vice President, Customer Service Delivery TELUS
Catherine Aczel Boivie
President & CEO, STLC-Strategic Technology Leadership Corporation
Wanda Costuros, CPA (CMA), MBA
Financial Executive (retired), Awarded Women of Influence – Business in Vancouver
Eugen Klein
Principal, Klein Group
Aaron Kueng
Director, Regional Operations BMO Bank of Montreal
Sandra MacKay
General Counsel & Governance Officer E-Comm Emergency Communications for British Columbia Incorporated
Heather McKay
HR Consultant
Dave Morton
Commissioner, BC Utilities Commission
Kerry Suffolk
Treasurer, B2Gold Corp.
Erika Tse
Chief Legal Officer and VP Human Resources
Shawn Williamson
President, Brightlight Pictures Inc.
Art Vertlieb Q.C.

Council of Governors

Roberta Beiser
President Edith Lando Charitable Foundation
Philip Bernard
President: StageFab
Director: Bernard & Associates
Director: Q1 Production Technologies
Donna Celle
Project Manager, Westcoast Agenda
Axel Conradi
Assistant Vice President: Canadian Pacific Railway (retired)
Jamie Corbett
President, Canadian Outback Adventure Company Ltd.
Bruce Flexman, FCPA, FCA
retired- former President of Advantage BC
Chris Gimpel
Partner, Tax Deloitte LLP
Stanley Hamilton
Professor Emeritus, Urban Land Economics, Sauder School of Business, UBC
Catharine Herb-Kelly, Q.C.
Associate Counsel, Branch MacMaster
Bruce Milley
Grant Thornton (retired)
Morris Nord
Senior Vice President, Marketing & Client Development (retired)
Ross Paul, C.M., PhD
Adjunct Professor, Centre for Policy Studies in Higher Education and Training, UBC
Joan Pitman
Janet Rogers
Wine and Food Travel
Al C. Schultz
Lisa Seed
Branch Manager, HSBC Bank Canada
Jim Storie
President and CEO, Vancouver Trolley Company, retired
John J. Sutherland
CFO and Vice President, Human Resources Canada Jetlines Ltd
Ian Waddell

Board of Directors, Arts Club of Vancouver Theatre Foundation

Lisa Seed
Branch Manager
HSBC Bank Canada
Jamie Bruce
Capital West Partners
Carol Humphrys
Jamie Corbett
Canadian Outback Adventure Company Ltd.
Eugen Klein
Principal Klein Group
Royal LePage City Centre
Bonnie Mah
Senior Administrator
Bilsland Griffith Benefit Administrators
Glenn Powers
Senior Lecturer
Simon Fraser University

Senior Management

Ashlie Corcoran Artistic Director
Peter Cathie White Executive Director
Stephan Baeuml Director of Production
Bryan Woo Director of Sales and Marketing
Valerie Prodanuk Director of Finance and Systems
Kathy Mackenzie Director of Development
Kevan Ellis Director of Education
Peter Chapek Guest Services Manager
Jack Holmes Facilities Manager
Teddy Forsyth Executive Business Manager