Our story doesn't have one beginning. You could say that it started in 2008 when I "directed" my friends in the 3-hour-long playground version of, The Sound of Music. Or that it began when I ran my middle school's first-ever Glee Club with my best friend from 2011-2013. Or that in high school when I was convincing friends to participate in musical theatre videos, that these were all small beginnings of something bigger. And although I didn't know it at the time, those experiences were preparing, and guiding me to where I am now.
When I was about 12 years old I was struggling with the question adults love to ask kids, "What do you want to be when you grow up?".
I was confiding in my brother, and he without a second's hesitation looked at me and said, "I think you'll have a theatre company. It'll be called Triple Threat Performers."
That seed grew slowly and quietly until 2019 when the Triple Threat Performers YouTube channel was created. The idea and goal was that youth performers would get a chance to be in musical theatre videos with their friends, while I was fulfilling my passion for directing, choreographing, and producing. They were fun little projects that made everyone feel good. At the same time as we were filming a video of "Only Us" from Dear Evan Hansen, the world was shutting down. It was March 2020, and no one knew the future of anything let alone what would happen to the arts and theatre. Through the lockdown, Triple Threat continued to create from the safety of our own homes. I recruited theatre families and friends to film from home, and then through slicing those clips together we produced videos of uplifting songs. It was a focus for everyone and gave us a sense of hope that creating together couldn't be taken away and that maybe one day we'd be on stage again.
In July 2020, using my parent's garage as a stage, and the driveway for the audience, I put together a little show based on Les Miserables with 8 of the kids I'd done music videos with. We welcomed close friends and family to come and watch our presentation which ended up bringing everyone a lot of joy. At this point, we were just a group of friends who had turned a backyard and a driveway into something resembling a stage, so the people closest to us could come and watch joyful young performers.
Throughout that year and the next, I began my studies at The Canadian College of Performing Arts. While I was attending a grueling school schedule, we continued to make music videos, did a short film based on Little Women, and did more performances in the driveway and backyard. This was also the time when Samantha Madill became T.T.P.'s choreographer, and Jessica Paxman joined Triple Threat Performers, whom I'm so lucky to share this journey with.
In 2022, Triple Threat Performers became The West Coast Triple Threat Performing Arts Society, which meant that we were now more than a group of performers with a passion to create, we were a functioning society and theatre company. Shortly after that, I graduated from C.C.P.A. and was ready to dive into our summer production of Grease. At this point, the number of performers who considered themselves Triple Threat Performers was growing quickly, and we were building an unwavering theatre family. We ended off that summer having performed Grease to over a thousand people. We then had the immense privilege of performing Into the Woods at The Ridge Playhouse in the Fall of 2022 which was a smashing success that left our audiences in disbelief at how our cast took on the complexity of that story and delivered it so beautifully, and Evelyn Hawes' musical direction made an impact on our company that will always be felt. In the Spring we began running musical theatre classes and hosted workshops taught by industry professionals.
In the summer of 2023, we performed High School Musical 2 on stage! Which pushed our performers even further and delivered the summer fun that everyone had hoped for. We were also invited to perform at the Saanich Fairgrounds for their outdoor screening of Grease for over 1,000 people, which was an incredible opportunity. In November 2023 we will be bringing Annie Jr. to the Dave Dunnet Theatre. One of our most exciting announcements is that we will be taking 16 of our students to New York in March 2024 to attend the Broadway Student Summit program where they will have a chance to learn about all that it takes to make it in the industry.
If I had, had, Triple Threat Performers to be a part of when I was growing up, it would have made the question, "What am I going to be?" very simple. So I hope to continue creating opportunities for young aspiring performers, to keep pushing them so that they can reach their full potential, and to give them a place they know they can return to year after year while being welcomed back by familiar faces and our company song.
Thank you to Jessica Paxman for being with me on this adventure, Samantha Madill for your time and passion for T.T.P., Jacquie Dawes for all you do behind the scenes, my parents for allowing me to take over your house with costumes and performers, our incredible parents who go above and beyond in care and gratitude, our loyal patrons, and everyone who has helped us get to where we are.
This is just the beginning!
- Victoria Callin