100 Years of Theatre

100 Years of Theatre

cSPACE Studio Theatre Shines 100 Years After First Play Produced at King Edward School

February 25, 2024

100 years ago the first play produced by a public school took place at King Edward School. cSPACE Marda Loop carries the torch.



— Wednesday February 25, 2014


“New King Edward Building Opened Last Night and Scholars Surpass Themselves as Amateur Actors and Actresses”

“For the first time in the history of the Calgary schools, a complete play was produced by pupils of a public school in this city, and by the splendid redemption given to the scholars of the new King Edward school band by the number of people who were unable to even obtain admission, it would appear that the precedent set by Wiiliam Aberhart, the popular principal, will be only the beginning of many more such entertainments. Half an hour before the performance commenced the concert hall was packed to the doors and hundreds were turned away…”

The “popular principal” William Aberhart could not let so many be disappointed, and according to the article, announced to the crowd that another performance would be added for the following night. 

36 students participated in this production of a lesser known fairy tale, which played to rave reviews. The play was produced with the dual aims of celebrating the opening of the new sandstone school, and to have the students practice elocution through action instead of reading. Revolutionary for the time!

100 years later we are happy to say that the spirit of theatrical excellence continues at cSPACE Marda Loop. The old proscenium theatre has been replaced (by necessity) with a state of the art flexible theatre space. In just the past year alone, 111 individual events were hosted in the Studio Theatre. This means we were 95% booked to capacity with over 80% of events from the artist and not-for-profit sector. 

Some highlights included:

  • Empty the House, a brand new avant-garde opera by Tayte Mitchell
  • A season of concerts from the Instrumental Society of Calgary
  • Another successful run of dance performances from Springboard Performance and FluidFest
  • And the sold out crowd pleasing 10th year anniversary of Forte Musical Guild’s Naughty But Nice holiday musical show

Also in the spirit of high standards of education set out by the original King Edward School, Quest Theatre now fills the Studio Theatre with excited children in the summer, through their daytime drama camps. These children have the opportunity to learn transferable skills, team building, and creative collaboration from theatre professionals, as well as being able to perform their final projects in a state of the art performance space. 

Here’s to 100 years of performance excellence and pioneering education, and to 100 more.