Remembering David Gardner


Robin Breon

Publication info: The Globe and Mail ; Toronto, Ont. [Toronto, Ont]11 Mar 2020: B20.

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The following remembrance was published in the Globe and Mail upon the passing of David Gardner, a well known pioneer of the Canadian theatre movement.

David Gardner was a lovely man and a firm believer in the need for theatre study and production in postsecondary institutions. When someone at Hart House got the bright idea that the University of Toronto would be better served if Hart House Theatre were to be converted into a lecture hall and study room for students, there was an immediate uproar and a Committee to Save Hart House Theatre was formed which I co-chaired with Mr. Gardner.

Soon, letters of support began to pour into the president’s office at Simcoe Hall from former students, donors and Governing Council members, along with many prominent names in Canadian theatre, film and television – all of whom had strong connections to the theatre and many known personally to David.

At the peak of the brouhaha, Dr. Gardner was interviewed by the CBC. When asked what he would do if the university moved forward and closed Hart House Theatre, he answered in his soft, mellifluous voice: “Well, it will be over my dead body.” The University of Toronto abandoned the idea and Hart House Theatre is now celebrating its 100th anniversary season.

Robin Breon is the former administrator for the University of Toronto’s Museum Studies Program

Subject: Theater

Company / organization: Name: University of Toronto; NAICS: 611310; Name: House Theatre; NAICS: 711110

Publication title: The Globe and Mail; Toronto, Ont.

First page: B20

Publication year: 2020

Publication date: Mar 11, 2020

Section: Arts

Publisher: The Globe and Mail

Place of publication: Toronto, Ont.

Country of publication: Canada, Toronto, Ont.

Publication subject: General Interest Periodicals–Canada

ISSN: 03190714

Source type: Newspapers

Language of publication: English

Document type: News

ProQuest document ID: 2375676310

Document URL: id=14771

Copyright: Copyright The Globe and Mail Mar 11, 2020

Last updated: 2020-03-11

Database: Global Newsstream

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