Blyth Festival

Blyth festival poster

Founded in 1975 by James Roy, a Blyth native and graduate from York University’s theatre program, the Blyth Festival has established itself as one of the leading summer theatre festivals in Canada. Roy joined forces with his wife and playwright, Anne Chislett as well as Keith Roulston, the editor of The Citizen, Blyth’s newspaper, to create a festival with an exclusively Canadian mandate. The Blyth festival has featured, premiered and produced more than 200 Canadian plays. Originally, the Blyth Festival was aimed at the local commnuity, but the audience has since grown substantially. Theatre lovers from across Canada and into the United States frequently cause the 491 seats available in the theatre to sell out. The theatre hosts between 40,000 and 50,000 patrons every year. In addition to the theatre, the Blyth Centre for the Arts also includes the Blyth Festival Art Gallery, Blyth Festival Orchestra, and Blyth Festival Singers.  

The fonds consists of administrative files containing financial and grant application details, minutes and reports, construction of Memorial Hall, fundraising, resumes, general business communications, various promotional materials such as advertising and marketing, souvenir programs and press releases. There are also materials relating to performances, including prompt scripts, house programs, reviews and articles, photos, and audio and visual recordings. Oversized material consists of technical drawings. 


Approx. 12 m of textual and other materials. 

Further accruals are expected.

Type(s) Of Materials: 
Audiovisual Material
Published Material
Technical Drawings
Unpublished Material and Manuscripts
How To Access: 

This collection is available for viewing on-site in Archival & Special Collections during our regular business hours.

Call numbers XZ1 MS A751 (house programs); XZ1 MS A752 (souvenir programs); XZ1 MS A753 (performance files); XZ1 MS A754 (production photos); XZ1 MS A755 (company portraits); XZ1 MS A756 and XZ1 MS A767 (reviews and articles); XZ1 MS A757 (audio-visual materials); XZ1 MS A758 (publicity); XZ1 MS A759XZ1 MS A762, and XZ1 MS A768 (correspondence); XZ1 MS A760 (administrative records); XZ1 MS A761 (financials); XZ1 MS A764 (new play development scripts); XZ1 MS A765 (youth development scripts); XZ1 MS A766 (teacher's study guides); XZ1 MS A769 (resumes).

Please contact reference staff for additional inventories acquired since 2013.


Official Blyth Festival website: