Laugh all summer long with the Norm Foster Theatre Festival


The Foster Festival is the only Canadian theatre festival to celebrate the work of a living Canadian playwright. Norm Foster is Canada’s most popular and most produced playwright in the history of our country. Foster has written almost 60 plays, receiving an average of 150 productions each year across Canada and internationally.
Fulfilling a longstanding dream of Executive Director Emily Oriold, The Foster Festival was founded by Oriold and Artistic Director Patricia Vanstone in a “Kitchen Cabinet” meeting in November 2014. It was Norm Foster’s love of Niagara Region that led us to establish our festival in St. Catharines’ beautiful new FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre.
“As a Foster Fan myself, it has been a dream come true to see The Foster Festival soar here in St. Catharines and the Niagara Region. Thank you to all of our patrons, sponsors, and supporters for joining us on this exciting new adventure and for sharing in the laughter,” says Emily Oriold, Foster Festival executive director and a 2017 recipient of Business Link Niagara’s 40 Under Forty Award.
The Foster Festival’s mission is to showcase the humour and heart of Foster’s writing in a dedicated environment, employing the finest Canadian theatre practitioners and supporting emerging and established Canadian playwrights interested in stories that are entertaining but also deeply meaningful to and reflective of our audience. The festival produced their first season in the summer of 2016 with a company that included some of Canada’s best actors and designers.
The Foster Festival will once again produce three fully professional Norm Foster plays this summer 2017 in the brand new, state-of-the-art FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre in downtown St. Catharines.
The first production of 2017 will be the world premiere of Screwball Comedy by Norm Foster, followed by Foster’s Old Love and finally the world premiere of Lunenburg.
“We are so excited to be giving you two new Norm Foster plays this season! Melanie Janzen, Catherine McGregor and Peter Krantz―three extraordinary Niagara-based actors, will light up the stage with their chemistry in our last show of the season. Lunenburg crackles with energy…and fun!” says Patricia Vanstone, Foster Festival artistic director.
The Foster Festival also applauds the recent appointment of Canadian playwright Norm Foster as an Officer of the Order of Canada, the highest civilian honour in the nation.
“I’m the luckiest guy in the world and I happen to live in the greatest country in the world. To be recognized by my country for my work is something very special to me. I have a job I love and I get to work with the most fun, creative people on earth,” says Norm Foster, on his recent Order of Canada. BL

To learn more about The Foster Festival’s 2017 season, please visit