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In the Artword Alternative, May 23 to June 2, 2002

Quintessence, a new play
Written by: Stephen Near
Directed by: Lisa Rothman
Starring: Natalie Ackers, Florence Ballard, Stephen Burley, Claire Calnan, Julius Chapple, Sharon Fraser and A.J. Pitts
Produced by:Reaching Symmetries
Stage Manager: Lia Moran
Lighting Design: Paul Major
Set Design: Lisa Rothman
Sound Design: Joseph Byer
Sound Consultant: Nicholas Longstaff
Dates: May 23 to June 2, 2002
Times / Prices: Tuesday to Saturday at 8 pm $12, Sunday 2:30 pm pwyc
For advance reservations, please call: 416-972-6707
Tickets for all performances are available at the door only..
Artword Theatre opens for ticket sales ONE HOUR BEFORE A SHOW only.



“A play with promise... a sweet look at love, loss and catharsis” EYE Weekly
“An intelligent and engaging play, skillfully crafted, with performances that are both sensitive and powerful” Off-the-Record Ottawa

"A woman disappears. Her grieving husband frantically searches for an invisible universe while his empathic assistant struggles to touch something real. His sister desperately wants to connect with her memories and his best friend is addicted to running away from them. Love abhors a vacuum when the link connecting our senses with the stars lies in-between the spaces"
 Produced by Reaching Symmetries, a collaboration between playwright Stephen Near and director Lisa Rothman, Quintessence unfolds a haunting story of love and loss amidst the obsessive search for answers in a scientific age. Originally produced as a one-act play for both the Ottawa Fringe (2001) and the Toronto Summerworks Festival (2001) and further presented as staged workshop at the Dancemakers space, Quintessence now makes its premiere as a full-length, Canadian drama at the Artword Alternative Theatre.
Founded in 2001 by Stephen Near and Lisa Rothman, Reaching Symmetries strives to question the mysteries of the human condition, and explore the realms that lie beyond comprehension. Stephen’s work as a playwright is influenced not only by his fascination with science and the occult but also his experience as a performer. Lisa hails from a mixed background of both naturalistic and physical theatre training, and throughout her 13 years as a director she has continually sought new ways to integrate text and movement on-stage.
Quintessence is the culmination of the company’s mandate to produce work that not only experiments with the dynamic connecting text, movement and space, but also challenges the audience to open doorways to new possibilities. The story of Quintessence speaks of the need to bridge the intellectual realm with the emotional. To further illustrate this theme on-stage, Reaching Symmetries has crafted a unique integration between narrative text and stylized movement to create a provocative piece of theatre.
Quintessence is produced with financial assistance from the Performing Arts Program of the Laidlaw Foundations and from the Onex Corporation.