It’s been a long and exciting ride for Aubrey Dan and his league of theatre followers. He reigned as the hopeful contender in presenting first class theatre productions in Toronto, filling the void left by Garth Drabinsky and going head on with David Mirvish. It was a valiant effort on the part of Aubrey Dan whose trade mark DanCap rolled out one hit production after another. Although many of the productions were touring companies with less razz-a-ma-taz and high end staging effects, the selection brought to Toronto was impressive to say the least. Among the notable productions were Green Day’s AMERICAN IDIOT, NEXT TO NORMAL, MEMPHIS, SOUTH PACIFIC, MISS SAIGON, ANNE OF GREEN GABLES, MY FAIR LADY, THE 25th ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE, THE DROWSEY CHAPERONE, 3 MO DIVAS, AVENUE Q, HAPPY DAYS, 9 TO 5, COME FLY AWAY and THE ADDAMS FAMILY. The hidden gem in his theatrical career has to be JERSEY BOYS which went on to tour and will be one of the last productions to wear the DanCap when it is all said and done by the end of summer. Rounding out the season and the final curtain calls are two shows running simultaneously in different venues. BEAUTY AND THE BEAST currently running at the Four Seasons Centre for the Arts and MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET playing the Toronto Centre for the Arts. The latter is a definite must see and hear.
Aubrey Dan will always be remembered as the big kid who took a big bite of the BIG APPLE and put his money where his heart is – in the theatre. And patrotism was not lost in any of his presenting productions. He never once missed an opening night without having a guest vocalist sing Oh Canada …. not even at the opening of American Idiot.
I will bet that once the economy bounces back and American day-visitors start returning to Toronto, Aubrey Dan may consider putting his hat back on and give it another shot.
Joey Cee, Publisher