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Shaw Festival to celebrate the life of actor, teacher, mentor Goldie Semple

Media Bulletin #4

Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, March 4, 2010. . . The life of Goldie Semple, one of Canadian theatre’s beloved and finest classical artists, teacher and mentor, will be celebrated at the Shaw Festival on Sunday, March 28 at 3 p.m. in the Festival Theatre. The Shaw Festival hopes all of Goldie’s friends, colleagues and fans will join us at this celebration.

Ms. Semple died peacefully surrounded by loved ones on the morning of December 9, 2009 at the age of 56 after a courageous battle with cancer. She leaves behind her husband of 33 years, Lorne Kennedy, and their 14 year old daughter, Madeline. Her rich and enduring legacy on the tapestry of Canadian theatre will last forever.

Born Marigold Ann Semple in Richmond, British Columbia, Ms. Semple studied theatre at the University of British Columbia in the late 60s and early 70s where she met her husband Lorne. Her extensive career included 17 seasons at the Shaw Festival and nine seasons at the Stratford Shakespeare Festival, where she played the leading roles in the repertoires of both festivals. Ms. Semple’s work encompassed everything from outrageous comedy to deeply moving portrayals of sheer elegance – her extraordinary range as an actor thrilled audiences time and again.

A celebrated performer across the country, her love of theatre was not only evident on the stage, but also off-stage and behind the scenes. Her work as a teacher and mentor touched the lives of many aspiring drama students who took part in a special summer Queen’s University intensive course, which she taught annually at The Shaw. She also taught at a number of other Canadian academic institutions as well as at New York University. An active member of each community she has lived in, Ms. Semple was co-founder of the Stratford-based theatre company Foolscap and also compiled and performed programs of poetry and music for the Niagara Historical Museum.

The Shaw Festival looks forward to celebrating this extraordinary woman on March 28th with all of Goldie’s friends, colleagues and fans.


In the spirit of George Bernard Shaw, the Shaw Festival provokes the mind and stirs the soul through a theatre experience so compelling that, year after year, ever-broadening groups of artists, audiences and supporters are drawn to our work in Niagara-on-the-Lake and beyond.

Please visit our website at www.shawfest.com/news for other Shaw Festival media releases. For more information, or to download images from our image bank to accompany this release,
members of the media may contact:

Odette Yazbeck
Public Relations Director
(905) 468-2153 or 1-800-657-1106 ext. 2222

Jenniffer Anand
Public Relations Coordinator
(905) 468-2153 or 1-800-657-1106 ext. 2224

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