Wednesday, 06 February 2013 14:22

Swift Current native gets a chance to direct

Written by  Jessi Gowan
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After being bitten by the theatre bug while attending high school, Swift Current native David Leyshon has traveled across the country to pursue his dream. This spring, Leyshon will be returning to Saskatchewan as director of the Souris Valley Theatre in Estevan.

“What’s happening in the arts landscape in Saskatchewan has always been interesting to me, so I’m excited to come back to Saskatchewan to work,” Leyshon explained. “I’ve known about this theatre for a long time, and seeing this opportunity to help reinvigorate that theatre was really appealing to me. It’s a great challenge, exciting, and scary in the best possible way. It felt like the right time to be doing something like that.”
Growing up in Swift Current, Leyshon was heavily involved with theatre and music. He did his Bachelor of Fine Arts at the University of Regina, and has been fortunate to work as a professional in the industry since then. Most of his time has been spent as an actor, working with festivals and theatres across the country.
“There’s an old saying that you don’t choose theatre – it chooses you,” he said. “I’ve always been passionate about it, and had this great desire to pursue it. That kind of deep, burning desire to do something that keeps you focused and driven, trying to accomplish goals you’ve set out for yourself. That’s what kept me going.”
Leyshon’s goals for his new position with the Souris Valley Theatre are to encourage participation from those involved with the theatre, as well as audience members. He is impressed with the support he has seen from the community so far.
“There are some really dedicated people there working hard to get this off the ground,” he explained. “I think we need to get people interested in wanting to come and be a part of what we are trying to grow there. Long term, I’m hoping to see the theatre branch out and explore different kinds of performances and programs, things that will keep people having the theatre as a destination – a place to go to be entertained, and have a great night out.”
Currently, Leyshon is located in Halifax, but plans to be in Estevan by the middle of May. He is looking forward to spending some time in his home province.
“I’ve been all over the place, so it will be nice to be in a kind of community that is familiar to me, on the prairies and close to home,” said Leyshon. “At the same time, it’s a whole new community for me. I don’t know Estevan, but the people I’ve met so far have been really nice. I’m excited to get to know that part of the province.”

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