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Writers and Players Club (Ottawa)

[Brief to the Royal Commission on
National Development in the Arts, Letters and Sciences]*


Writers and Players Club (Ottawa)x, nucleus of the National Theatre Society of Canada, respectfully submits:

  1. That the time has come for the Government of Canada, in conjunction with the Corporation of the City of Ottawa, to take immediate action toward the building of a National Theatre in Ottawa, the Capital City of Canada, as perhaps the most vital need in the cultural growth not only of this City, but of the whole of Canada.
  2. That the entire cost of construction and maintenance of this National Theatre be borne jointly by the Government of Canada and the Corporation of the City of Ottawa.

    Until such a Theatre is built, the Hall of the National Museum be made available for lectures, rehearsals and performances; and be called the National Theatre (pro. tem.)

  3. That to ensure the freedom of this National Stage from commercial, political and other interference, the purchase and choice of plays shall be within the sole and untrammelled [sic] authority of an annually elected Directorate of the Writers and Players Club, in consultation, whenever necessary, with Canadian professors of English and French literature.

    That Performers and Active Playwrights shall be called the National Theatre Company, or , for short, the National Players, entirely an independent Company.1 [sic - footnote not included in brief - Ed.]

  4. That encouragement be given to the writing and production of "native" Canadian plays - that is, drama dealing with:
    1. the mythical-legendary or "pre-lhistoric" [sic] Canada
    2. the period from the earliest historical contact of white with Indian, on through the French and British regimes to the present era of Canadian nationhood.

    Report on one such "native" play attached to this Brief to indicate new scope for Canadian literary and dramatic talent.


    x(Such Clubs to be established throughout Canada, to provide scope within the National Theatre for the literary and histrionic talent from every community in Canada)     Easily done per Canadian Author's Association.

    lCopy of report of such a work attached


    The world classics of the stage shall be given due attention, and two months of each year1 shall be devoted to French-spoken drama.

  5. That for the immediate practical purposes, the Writers and Players Club, Ottawa, composed of local creative authors and professional actors, be recognized as the official intermediary between the National Theatre Society2 of Canada and the Government.

For the Writers
and Players Club
Hilda Ridley, Editor, Canadiana
H.N. Edelstein, poet and teacher of classics, Director, The National Players


1Not consecutively - 1 or 2 weeks each season

2Distinguish this from National Theatre Company (or "National Players") who will run the show, paying own way. National Theatre Society will appeal for public support.

*Writers and Players Club (Ottawa). [Brief to the Royal Commission on National Development in the Arts, Letters and Sciences]. [Ottawa : s.n., 1949]. 2 feuilles. Avec la permission du Bureau du Conseil Privé.

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