Islanders will be welcoming a royal visit from Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall this May, but will be wishing a fond farewell to ‘HRM the Queen’ at the same time.
Wade Lynch, associate artistic director at the Centre, and a popular entertainer and director, is leaving the province, as his partner has accepted a position at Bishop’s University in Sherbrooke, Que.
“This is bitter-sweet,” says Lynch, well-known for playing characters such as The Queen, Tony Whitcomb, and Ebenezer Scrooge with great humour.
“Change is growth, and I love a new challenge, but giving up a dream job is hard. A move means a return to a freelance lifestyle, pursuing acting and directing gigs with other Canadian theatre companies.”
He adds, “It is a welcome return to my roots and my passion, but a wrench to leave — even temporarily — the province that I now call home. But home is where the heart is and after 19 years together, my home is where Miles is.”
"This is a sad loss for the centre; he will be truly missed,” says Anne Allan, artistic director of The Charlottetown Festival.
“Wade has been devoted in his outstanding work for the festival, the School of Performing Arts, and the community, always bringing his warm personality, exceptional talent and deep care to every project. He has been an inspiration for many and is an exceptional human being, colleague and a true friend."
A Richmond, B.C., native, Lynch first came to P.E.I. in 1992 to play in The Charlottetown Festival hit, A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline. Over the next two decades he would delight audiences in numerous productions, including Shear Madness, Eight to the Bar, Canada ROCKS!, Anne of Green Gables-The Musical, Stones in His Pockets, Hairspray and Buddy!
Lynch also directed numerous shows with the festival, including Dear Johnny Deere, The Ballad of Stompin’ Tom, Sexy Laundry, The Kitchen Witches and the award-winning Come-All-Ye, which he co-created. In recent years, he directed The Sound of Music and Wizard of Oz in association with the centre and Holland College-partnered School of Performing Arts, where he teaches.
“On behalf of our chairman, board of directors, and staff, I wish to extend a heartfelt thank you to Wade for his many years of dedication to Confederation Centre,” says Jessie Inman, CEO.
“The centre, and indeed Prince Edward Island, will not be the same without our multi-talented and resident funny-man, but we wish him the very best in this next stage of his life, and are certain we will see him back on our stages again before too long.”
Lynch will remain with Confederation Centre of the Arts until the beginning of May.