From an old church to a co-working space, a building on Eckhardt Avenue in Penticton is about to undergo a much different vision.
Thanks to a couple from Vancouver, who fell in love with the Okanagan and its potential, the 4300-square-foot building at 125 Eckhardt Avenue East will become Mutant Films Inc., a boutique film production studio, and Tempest Theatre and Film Society, a non-profit organization dedicated to advancing theatre and film arts.
This new cultural manifestation of Kate Twa and Ronan Reinart, started after the duo finished the production of the film The Orchard in 2016.
Twa says the basis for the film is about a brash Los Angles talent agent who lost his zest for life and inherits, unexpectedly, a peach orchard from his eccentric aunt.
“So, he travels to Canada to unload it, to sell it to foreign developers,” she explained. “But like all of us, he fell in love with the people, the landscape, and he tried to stay and so did we.”
Now, the team, who helped to co-found Railtown Actors Studio in the Lower Mainland, will encourage writers to bring original content to be created and shot in Penticton as well as post-production in the studio.
Reinart will start production on a new project this summer and says the black box theatre is set to open in the fall.
“We hope to shoot some stuff here. This will be our production office, this will be our main creative sandbox,” he said. “We are going to be setting up our post-production facility with editing suites downstairs.”
Helping bring this creative space to fruition is Okanagan-born managing director Andrea Guillemet.
“For somebody to come in with their kind of credentials from Vancouver and want to host and showcase our beautiful city is incredible,” she said. “ So, I am very excited for them and what they will bring to the area with their directorial, cinematic experience, and I look forward to a lot of world-class productions that they will be putting out.”
Beyond encouraging and developing skills and talent in theatre and film arts, this non-profit organization will ensure Okanagan residents are able to see shows in the 77-seat black box theatre or take a seat in the writer’s salon.
To contact the Tempest Theatre and Film Society please email: firstname.lastname@example.org