The Isolation Diaries: The Firehall Arts Centre's Donna Spencer

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      With theatres, galleries, stores, and restaurants shuttered to flatten the COVID-19 curve, the Isolation Diaries reach out to Vancouver’s creative sector to find out what they’re watching, how they’re coping, and where they’re finding inspiration.

      The Artist

      Donna Spencer is a founding director and artistic producer at the Firehall Arts Centre and the Dancing on the Edge Festival. Among her Jessie Richardson theatre awards, she's won one for Multicultural Innovation in the Theatre and a Career Achievement Award, as well as outstanding-direction prizes for shows from Urinetown, the Musical to Reading Hebron.  Her work in the local stage scene have earned her a place in the BC Entertainment Hall of Fame.  

      No. 1 thing that’s getting you through

      Staying in touch with family and friends online and by phone; meditation and the odd glass of red wine. And realizing that this is is an opportunity  to take some time for contemplation and consideration; read some of the plays and books that I have collected over the years. 

      Comfort food

      It depends on the day but I'm loving exploring new recipes.

      Quarantine soundtrack

      Nothing specific--we have a big collection of old vinyl and am enjoying discovering it again, including old Broadway musicals which I sing along to, and all of the folk, rock music that I loved in the past--which I also sing along too. 

      Creative or learning outlet

      I am revisiting playing the piano and French online classes.  

      Fitness hack

      Walking and exploring different areas of the city and keeping my physical distance when I do; yoga.

      Streaming now

      Not streaming much--watching some of the National Theatre offerings and, also, checking out old VHS and DVD's that I haven't looked at in years and then downsizing the collection. 

      Survival tip

      Be kind to yourself and to others, be grateful, smile and find something to laugh about, and follow the rules--be safe.