Saturday, December 29, 2012

The Little Mermaid

After putting Rogers and Hammerstein's The Sound of Music to bed after a highly successful run at St Andrews Presbyterian Church, we now turn our attention to our next big project; The Little Mermaid. Bottle Tree Productions has secured the rights to Disney's The Little Mermaid. It is the show that our musical theatre class will perform. We are looking for young aspiring actors to play Ariel and her friends; Flounder and Sebastian. Also Prince Eric and Triton and of course the evil Ursula. Good parts are also available in the roles of Scuttle; the Sea Gull and the eels; Flotsam and Jetsam.
There are a number of great songs in this show including Part of Your World and Under the Sea. in this popular Disney classic about a mermaid who wants to be human. Based on the Hans Christian Anderson fairy tale. This will be a spectacular show on stage.

Our first class is Monday January 7th from 6 pm-8 pm.

Each child that signs up for our musical theatre class will get either a lead or chorus. But either will give your child memories for a lifetime. The big musical numbers will be a blast for the chorus members to perform and the leads will be a challenge for whomever is picked. In our musical theatre classes, we strive to give the child a taste of what a professional production is like. There is a time commitment of three to four classes a week. There are singing, acting and dancing lessons by Charles Robertson (Director of 2012's The Sound of Music) and Anne Marie Mortensen (Director of 2011's Oliver! and 2012's Fiddler on the Roof) There is instruction about how to prepare for an audition.

We choose shows that have appeal to young people and that support large casts, and role sharing. Every student who enrols in the class is guaranteed a place on stage as an actor in the production. There are no prerequisites for enrolment - if you have an interest, we will train you! When possible, we share roles so that more students get a taste of being both chorus and a named role. The class runs like a production, and the show is performed for a paying audience in a proper theatre, with lights, sound, set, costumes - the works!

Each child will be put in a position where they can be successful on stage. We encourage team work in theatre. When everyone is contributing as part of the team it makes for a far more enjoyable experience for everyone.

The final production will be at The Octave Theatre on Dalton Avenue which comes equipped with everything for a professional looking show-lights, sound, dressing rooms and a nice-looking theatre.

To register, pay online or to find out more information please go to Musical Theatre Class

Monday, December 10, 2012

Two Marias

Two very talented young women are sharing the role of Maria

Bottle Tree Productions presents Rodgers and Hammerstein's The Sound of Music and two very different Marias

Bottle Tree Productions presents The Sound of Music at St. Andrews Presbyterian Church on the corner of Princess and Clergy Streets. Performances are December 13th to the 22nd, Thursdays to Saturdays at 7:30 pm. Tickets can be purchased online at Bottle Tree Productions; The Sound of Music or at the Grand Theatre Box Office. 613-530-2050 or online at The Grand Theatre Box Office is located at 218 Princess Street in downtown Kingston. Ticket Prices are $25/adults, $22.50/seniors, $20/students, $15/children under 12.

Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein wrote the musical based on the memoirs of Maria von Trapp. Maria von Trapp, the misfit nun who became governess to the von Trapp family was played by Julie Andrews in the filmed version of the musical. Christopher Plummer played Captain von Trapp.

In Bottle Tree's production, two very talented young women are sharing the role of Maria. Both are first year Queens students and they could not be more different. Engineering student Hannah Smith and Con Ed student Sara Sturgeon play Maria on alternate nights. Robert Bruce plays Captain Von Trapp. 

Sara is French Canadian and Hannah is English Canadian.

Sara attended Marie Rivere, the francophone high school on Dalton Avenue and Hanna attended KCVI.
Sara's first big role came in last year's Meistersingers' production of Oliver as Charlotte the undertaker's daughter  where, as she says: ”I had four lines” Previous to that Sara had been in a Not So Amateur Amateurs Production. She wasn't sure if she was guard number two or guard number three.

Sound of Music director Charles Robertson saw Oliver and when Anne Marie Mortensen and he were looking for someone to play Cinderella, they both thought that Sara had great stage presence and so cast her in the lead. Robertson commented. “She was everything a Cinderella should be. Charming and graceful with a nice singing voice. You would have thought she had been acting for years. It was shocking that Sara only had bit parts before.”

Robertson has known Hannah Smith for a long time. “Hannah is one of the best actors I have worked with. She is very bright, very well read and very creative. Great imagination. She has a great voice and tremendous acting skills. She recently appeared in Domino Theatre's production of 'A Street Car Named Desire' as Stella and before that as Rita in Theatre 5's 'Educating Rita'”  You tube video of Hannah performing Juliet.

Robertson added; “While both first year Queen's students do intend to keep acting in the future, they are working hard to succeed in their chosen career paths at the university. If for whatever reason; engineering and teaching don't turn out, they always have a plan 'b; to fall back on; they can act and sing.”

Friday, November 30, 2012

Ten dollar tickets to Fiddler on the Roof

For people who have purchased tickets to Bottle Tree Productions' The Sound of Music, there is an added perk. Ten dollar tickets to The Mesitersingers production of Fiddler on the Roof

This generous offer of ten dollar tickets was made to Bottle Tree Productions ticket buyers last night and we are happy to participate.

If you have bought a ticket to The Sound of Music at simply take the online ticket receipt, or if you have purchased the ticket from the Grand Theatre, bring your ticket or recipt, or if you have purchased a ticket from cast members of The Sound of Music, please bring your ticket as evidence of proof of purchase of Sound of Music tickets, and you will get  a ten dollar passport to Meistersingers fantastic vision of Fiddler on the Roof.

These discount tickets to Fiddler on the Roof must be purchased at the door.

It is a beautifully conceived production with an inspired set, beautiful costumes and great singing.

But you have to act fast. The show closes this weekend with the last performance being Sunday afternoon at 2 pm.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Galalujah-Silent Auction Items Saturday September 15

Silent Auction at St Andrews in downtown Kingston

We have some great silent auction items for our fundraiser this Saturday September 15th starting at 7 pm. 
We have hotel rooms, theatre tickets, photo shoots, princess parties, acting classes, martial arts classes, dance classes, gym memberships, hollywood swag bags and even your own personal chef. Drop by Saturday night and bid on some great items. 

Galalujah is a fundraiser for Bottle Tree Productions' The Sound of Music and the St Andrews Music Fund.

The evening kicks off at 7:00 PM -
with Hors d'Oeuvres and; cash bar (mocktails and soft drinks)
There is a Silent Auction throughout the evening
At 8:00 PM The Musical Gala begins

Featuring Andromahi Raptis
Tim Torgerson
Danny Young
The Kingston Community Strings
The Frontenac Women's Chorus
John Farant
Mary Deacon
St Andrews Choir
The Cast of The Sound of Music
Ian Bevell
Audrey Robinson

Cost $30/adults
$25/students and seniors

For tickets
go online at Galalujah! 2012
or phone 613-384-8433

Silent Auction Items

  • Two subscriptions to Domino Theatre's 2012-13 Season-Value $196.00
  • Photo package Taylor Studios Value $409.00
  • Martial Arts Class at Martial Axis Value $100.00
  • Once Upon a Princess - one Princess party
  • Jack the Happy Chef - personal chef dinner for 6
  • Leisa's School of Dance - $150.00 gift certificate for dance lessons
  • GoodLife Fitness - (2 of these) one month complimentary membership and Personal Health Profile and gym bag
  • Kingston Harbourfront Radisson Hotel - overnight accommodation
  • Katherine Ward - The Ultimate Movie Lover's Swag bag (dvd's, merchandise from Hollywood movies
  • LVS Consulting - Team Workshop or Personal Leadership Coaching
  • Toronto Raptors - signed basketball
  • Grand Theatre - family pack tickets (4) for the Russian State Ballet's "The Nutcracker"
  • Bottle Tree Productions - tickets for 2 plus 2 dinner coupons for King Street Sizzle (the Sound of Music)
  • Bottle Tree Productions - Fall or Winter session Stage Right acting class (not Musical Theatre Class
  • Kingston Meistersingers - 4 opening night tickets to Fiddler on the Roof
 To purchase tickets please go to  Galalujah!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Talent Agencies-What do I need to know?

Do you want to be on television or in the movies?

There are lots of film and television roles available in Toronto, Hollywood, Vancouver and New York to name some of the major production centres in North America. The problem is, how do you get to audition for these roles? You've taken local acting classes and you've starred in some local productions. How do you take it to the next level? How do you get there?

Well, you could go to university level theatre schools and get your degree in acting. It would probably involve three to four years of your life, or you could enrol in one of the reputable three-year college programs. After you graduate, you would need to get an agent.

An agent; depending on how reputable they are, would be able to open doors for you, that you can't open for yourself. They would handle getting you auditions with major movie and television studios.
They would handle the financial and legal details for you. An agent works with you to get you work, because the more money you make as an actor, the more money the agent makes. The agent takes a percentage of your earnings in the 10-15 percent bracket, depending on different factors such as what type of acting your are doing.

Now, you don't need an acting degree to get an agent. If you don't want to spend three or four years in an acting school, you can simply submit your photo and resume to various talent agencies in a major city nearest you. If you have the right look, you might get lucky and land an agent.

I am over-simplifying the process here. Sometimes you have to audition for an agent. Sometimes you don't.

Where do you find a good agent? Good question. First question though should be; why do you need a good agent? Because a good agent can get you a job. They have connections. A bad agent can't because they don't have those connections. You also need a legitimate, reputable agent that the film and television industry wants to work with. They also have to be an agency that the actor's unions want its members to work with. How do you know what these agencies are? How can you find them?

Easy. You can look in Canada for ACTRA approved agents or in The United States, you can look for SAG-AFTRA approved agencies. That will take some research, but it is well worth the time. Our company; Bottle Tree Productions has compiled a list of these union-approved agencies in Toronto and Hollywood. The agencies we have listed work primarily with young people.

Hollywood Agencies for Children and Teens

Toronto Agencies for Children and Teens

Friday, August 31, 2012

Sound of Music in Kingston, Ontario

Please note that we are also offering this production for the holidays Dec. 5 - 14, 2013.  This is our second year featurying this musical. Please refer to 'Sound of Music Kingston Ontario 2013' post for new information, or better yet, visit our website (!

Bottle Tree Productions presents The Sound of Music this year at St Andrews Presbyterian Church in downtown Kingston at 130 Clergy Street East. Dates are Thursday, Friday and Saturday December 13-15 and the following Thursday, Friday and Saturday December 20-22

This family favourite stars among others: Robert Bruce, Mary Deacon, Theresa Witjes, Hannah Smith, Sara Sturgeon, Alex Whitehead, Justin Robertson, Savannah Kimmerer, Maureen Barnes, Julia Moore, Khira Whiting, Cindy Chapelle, Gillian Foster and many more, singing songs like “Climb Ev'ry Mountain.” My Favourite Things.” “Sixteen going on Seventeen.” “The Sound of Music” and “Eidleweiss” 

Robert Bruce makes his stage debut as Captain Von Trapp and Queens University students Hannah Smith and Sara Sturgeon will split the role of Maria.

Directed by Charles Robertson. Produced by Anne Marie Mortensen.

The production takes place in the beautiful confines of St Andrews Presbyterian Church where the songs and the music will be a treat for the ear because of the great acoustics. Because several scenes take place in a church, this will be a great setting for the musical.

Because the musical takes place in downtown Kingston, there will be a fabulous opportunity to have dinner before the show or drinks after ward if you have left the kids at home. Take in some shopping before hand and then a show.

Bottle Tree Productions has a rich tradition of theatre and theatrical education including musical theatre classes. in Kingston.

The Sound of Music will be a must-see.

To buy tickets go to Sound of Music-Tickets 

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Acting Classes Fall Session-Bottle Tree Productions

Interested in Acting?

Why not try our acting classes. Acting Classes are a great way to develop self-esteem, social skills, reading skills, comprehension skills, vocal skills, movement skills, creative skills, and the imagination. 

Our acting classes can also open the door to a career in the performing arts. According to ACTRA, the Canadian professional actor's union in Canada, there are approximately 22,000 professional actors in tv, film and commercials in Canada. According to SAG-AFTRA, the American professional actor's union in the United States, there are approximately 120,000-130,000 such professional actors. These figures do not include professional actors exclusively doing theatre. Through Bottle tree Productions, learn the nuts and bolts of a career in the performing arts.

Bottle Tree Productions starts its fall session of Stage Right acting classes Saturday September 14th .at St Andrews Presbyterian Church at the corner of Princess and Clergy Streets in Kingston's down town.

Stage Right JR (6 - 10) years $159.90    ($141.50 + HST) 
Stage Right INT (11 & 12) years $245.78     ($217.50 + HST)
Stage Right SR (TEENS)               $245.78     ($217.50 + HST)

On Wednesdays we have Stage Right Acting Classes from 7 pm until 8:30 pm. These classes cost 217.50 dollars plus hst.

We have a large room for classes. Our teachers have a lot of experience and connections to various amateur and professional theatre companies.

Our acting class program has been developed over years of experience. We believe in developing the fundamentals for technique and self-confidence.

We believe each child and adult has an incredible amount of potential. Our goal is to unleash that potential that is inside everyone. But potential is not identically distributed, so we do not believe in the cookie-cutter approach. We believe in suiting our teaching approach to the needs of the individual within the context of the class as a whole. 

We use theatre games to develop the imagination and the ability to be in the moment and to build self-esteem. We do scenes to develop technique. Warning-This is not the public education system. We do not have lessons and marks. Lessons and marks not an optimum way to learn how to succeed in any art form.  While the public education system considers success moving on to the next grade, we consider success the development of the person. We know what works and what doesn't. We work with young and old to get them ready for the stage. We are not concerned with the passing fads of theatre learning. We are only concerned with making our students ready for performing under the lights.

Several of our students, young and old, have recently appeared in productions of The Sound of Music, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Fiddler on the Roof, various Domino Theatre productions, Blue Canoe and many more. Some of our more successful students have worked professionally, in film, television and theatre.

We believe that theatre is a team sport, that in order to succeed in theatre a student has to learn that the team is important, that strength comes from numbers, that wanting attention, or being concerned only about your own needs, does not work in professional theatre, film or television. No one will work with someone who rubs everyone else the wrong way. No one in show business wants to work with a diva.

The performing arts is a collaborative art form. Everyone has to pull together in the same direction. There are so many people that contribute to the success of a show. Directors, writers, choreographers, costumers, set designers, stage management, sound and lighting people, marketing people and performers are some of the people that contribute to the success of a show. Theatre is a community. We work hard to make sure that our students are ready to become a valuable part of that community.

For more information about our fall acting classes or to register please go to Acting Classes

To purchase an acting class and be automatically registered through Paypal - See below

Acting Class Options (all regular classes)

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Mahi Raptis back in Kingston

Greek-Canadian Soprano Andromahi(Mahi) Raptis headlines the Galalujah! Fundraiser at St Andrews Presbyterian Church Saturday September 15th. Originally from Kingston, Mahi has been studying music in Toronto. 

Anne Marie Mortensen and Charles Robertson first saw Mahi in Urinetown at KCVI and she was captivating. The following year they had the pleasure of working with her in Bottle Tree Productions' The Pirates of Penzance by Gilbert and Sullivan.

Mahi is beginning her final year of a Bachelor of Music in Voice Performance at the University of Toronto, under the tutelage of Professor Lorna MacDonald. This summer Andromahi attended the world renowned Franz-Schubert-Institut in Vienna, Austria for an intensive five weeks devoted to German Lieder. In 2011 she was a National Finalist at the Canadian Music Competition and won the Provincial Finals of the Kiwanis Music Festival. In August of 2011, she sang the role of Ilia in Summer Opera Lyric Theatre’s production of Idomeneo. For Opera Atelier, Andromahi has sung in the chorus of both Don Giovanni and La clemenza di Tito, which starred Measha Brueggergosman. Andromahi’s choral experience began with the Cantabile Choirs of Kingston in 2001, and since has taken her to the stage of Roy Thompson Hall with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Helmuth Rilling. For more on Mahi see  Greg Burliuk's article in The Whig Standard

Galalujah is a fundraiser for Bottle Tree Productions' The Sound of Music and the St Andrews Music Fund.

The evening kicks off at 7:00 PM -
with Hors d'Oeuvres & cash bar (mocktails and soft drinks)
There is a Silent Auction throughout the evening
At 8:00 PM The Musical Gala begins

Featuring Andromahi Raptis
The Kingstown Tenors
The Kingston Community Strings
The Frontenac Women's Chorus
St Andrews Choir
The Cast of The Sound of Music

Cost $30/adults
$25/students and seniors

For tickets
go online at Galalujah! 2012
or phone 613-384-8433
or email
or go to the Grand Theatre Box Office
218 Princess St. Kingston, ON
phone 613-530-2050

For more about Andromahi, please go to Mahi Raptis

Anne Marie and Charles are pleased to welcome Andromahi back to Kingston and invite you to come an enjoy the talent of this exceptional young woman. 

Monday, July 9, 2012

Sound of Music-Auditions

From the week of July 2nd-7th, Bottle Tree Productions had auditions for the December production of Sound of Music. Charles Robertson is directing. Ian Bevel is the musical director. Anton Kaduck is the stage manager. Anne Marie Mortensen is producing. 75 people aged 3 to 53 from Kingston and area auditioned. The decision-making process will be tough because of the high talent level of the auditioners. This family-friendly musical is a wonderful mixture of children and adults. The songs are known and loved by everyone. The production will take place at St. Andrews Presbyterian Church, with its gorgeous acoustics, which will make the songs sound that much sweeter. The church is an appropriate setting for the musical story of the Von Trapps, because Maria is a young nun. There are in fact, a number of nuns in the show. Five years ago, Bottle Tree Productions produced Cats at the Wellington Street Theatre and Ebon Gage creatively used the intimate space to deliver a top notch production. Likewise, the whole church will be used for Sound of Music. The church bells will be used, as will the organ. The aisles in the audience and the back of the church will be used for performance space as well, providing the audience with the sensation that the show will surround them. This much-loved show will touch the hearts of young and old. Tickets can be bought at The Grand Theatre Box Office.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Sugar and Spice at St Andrews June 29th/2012

Bottle Tree Productions and St Andrews Presbyterian Church present Sugar and Spice; a night of musical fun June 29th/2012

St. Andrews' Presbyterian Church and Bottle Tree Productions will be offering a series of Coffee Houses for young performers. The first is on June 29 @ 7:30 pm. This is a musical Coffee House (the next one will be for Improv!) and it promises to be a great evening.

Sugar and Spice features some great young Kingston musicians. 

We are pleased to receive financial support from Empire Life. Empire Life has made a big commitment to  the arts in Kingston. 

Sugar and Spice performers include.                                   

Audrey Robinson
Amanda Verner
Dana Lynn Farrel
Khira Wieting
Allyson Foster
Sara Sturgeon
Eric Sturgeon
Nathan Lappan
Aquatic Fire
11 am

                                                             Amanda Verner/Sugar and Spice
Admission is just $5.00 per person. Refreshments, including a mocktail bar will be served in the adjoining hall, and if you bring a non-perishable food item for the Kingston Street Mission, we will give you one free beverage. Cafe Church provides the coffee. Lattes will be served.

Sugar and Spice at St. Andrews is a great opportunity for young musicians, singers, soloists and bands to come out and perform for friends, family and the Kingston community. Proceeds benefit St. Andrews music fund and Bottle Tree Productions' "The Sound of Music". Support Kingston's young musicians, support the Kingston Street Mission, support St. Andrews Presbyterian Church and support Bottle Tree Productions by coming to Sugar and Spice.

For further information contact Bottle Tree Productions at 613-384-8433 or email us at, or check out our website at

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Second City Workshops in Kingston

Second City has a long and storied history in comedy. Started over 50 years ago in Chicago in America's second city, with training centres now set up in LA  and Toronto, this funny bone factory has churned out a long list of famous alumni. Canadians of course know Dan Akroyd, Martin Short, Rick Moranis, Catherine O'Hara, John Candy, Eugene Levy, Andrea Martin, Colin Mochry, Ryan Stiles, Joe Flaherty, Mike Myers and many more. As a country Canada has some of the best paid comedians in the world. When you are living next to a big bully, when you are a mouse living next to an elephant you either learn to make the big guy laugh, or get running shoes.

Agents in Toronto will often recommend that young would be actors go to Second City workshops to develop their Improv skills. Important for any kind of acting. Of course; packing up the van and heading to Toronto for a day can cost a lot in time effort and money.

So why not bring Second City here? So we decided to bring them in for workshops on April 28th. Kingston has a vast talent pool of funny kids. Check out the high school Improv games some time. This is a very affordable workshop in time effort and money. Morning workshops will be geared to grade eights and under. Afternoon workshops will be geared to highschool-aged kids. Cost is only 45 dollars plus hst.

Limit is 25 kids/workshop. Details below. To register please go to Second City Workshops

Saturday April 28
@ St.Andrew's Presbyterian Church
Clergy and Princess
**LIMIT OF 25 participants per group**
$45.00 + hst
10:30 - 12:30  - Intermediate Group (7 - 14 years old, and not above Grade 8)
1:30 - 3:30 - Senior Group (14 - 17 years old, AND grade 9 and up)

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Bottle Tree Productions Musical Theatre Class presents Disney's Aladdin

Bottle Tree's Musical Theatre class presents Disney's Aladdin at the Octave Theatre on Dalton Avenue Saturday March 24th; 4 pm and 7 pm, and Sunday  March 25th; 4 pm and 7 pm. Tickets are $10 for children and students, $12 for seniors and $15 for adults. Customers can purchase tickets online at Bottle Tree Productions.

A very talented cast of Kingston youth star in what is one of Disney's finest musical offerings.

This musical has all the Songs from the Disney film including "Arabian Nights," "One Jump Ahead," "Friend Like Me," "Prince Ali," and "A Whole New World,

The characters in the stage musical version of the film include

Princess Jasmine
Narrators 1-5
Magic Carpet
Prince Baba of Ganoush
Prince Dahdu Rahn-Rahn
(The) Prince Formerly Known as the Artist

Film info

Aladdin was released in 1992. Aladdin was the 31st animated feature in the Walt Disney Animated Classics series, It was directed by John Musker and Ron Clements.

17 year old Scott Weinger made a homemade audition tape with his mother playing the Genie, 6 months later, he won the role of Aladdin.

In 1988, lyricist Howard Ashman pushed the idea of an animated musical adaptation of Aladdin to Disney. Composer Alan Menken and songwriters Howard Ashman and Tim Rice worked on the music.

Aladdin won two academy awards. for, best Original Score and Best Original Song for "A Whole New World"