Players is a not-for-profit organization that produces hilarious plot-based and/or sketch comedy musical shows. Our unique style draws its origins from comedy cabarets produced at Queen's University since… well… the beginning of time. (Lorne Greene and Robertson Davies were early members... we’re not kidding!) Players was formed in Toronto in 2004 by Queen’s alumni and is now happily comprised of dedicated individuals from a variety of backgrounds.
But, as hilarious as the shows are, and as fun as they are to produce, Players has also always had a very strong charitable component to its mandate. In fact, to date, Players has donated over $220,000 to a wide variety of fantastic charities!
Players has three equally important guiding pillars (or pilsners as well call them) which we try to always keep balanced in our decision-making process:
That PLAYERS produce shows of a high quality
That PLAYERS foster a fun & safe environment by welcoming and advocating for the presence and contributions of all people and recognizing them for their effort.
That PLAYERS donate all of our profits to charity
Since inception, we have produced 17 full-scale productions, 2 touring productions, and 17 single-night shows - and all of them have been completely sold-out! This is due to the tremendous efforts of our volunteers, the amazing loyalty of our audience and the staggering generosity of our sponsors. We are very lucky to have such strong support!
Fun Fact: On March 28th, 2015 Players was awarded the Alumni Humanitarian Award at the Queen's University Alumni Association Gala Awards Dinner. The award is presented to Queen’s alumni in recognition of distinguished work or volunteer service, at home or abroad, which has made a difference to the well-being of others.
What makes a Players show unique?
Our scripts are a mash-up of popular or retro themes and characters often culled from TV shows and Movies. The title of the show will usually give you a clue as to which characters you might see on stage. These characters all meet up and go through a variety of trials and tribulations usually involving a classic “bad guy.” While the story is told there is the odd joke, occasional partial nudity, a smattering of local “humour,” some pop culture gags and of course, insanely great music!
Our music is a mix of pop, R & B, rock, soul and rap performed with some snappy dance moves, great harmonies and sex appeal. A tight band backs up our singers and rocks it out for you all night long. You won’t be disappointed!
We have a number of traditions that often require some audience participation. They include:
- Every show contains the question “where shall we go, what shall we do?” This gets a big cheer.
- Every show contains the line “Name of the show!” following someone actually saying the name of the show. This also gets a big cheer.
- Whenever a cast member mentions a song title, the entire audience encourages them to “SING” that song.
- When an actor makes a noticeable mistake, the audience often points out how “SEAMLESS” it was.
- The Cast, Crew & Band drink during the show. The audience is welcome to responsibly follow suit!
- From time to time, someone on stage might do something that catches your fancy... it is customary to offer this person a drink to show your appreciation... during the show!
- Want to pass a beer up to a member of the cast/band/crew? You can! Simply bring $5 to the production table at the front, indicate the person you want to give the beer to, and we’ll pass up a beer from our stash on your behalf! Wanna buy a round for the whole band? We can do that too - $25 sends each of them a drink!
Who’s in charge?
& Former Executives
Candice Gilliam 3
Chris Peressotti 3
Don Duval 3
Michael Payne 1, 3
Paul Levia 3
Peter Higgins 1, 2
Tim Evans 1, 3
2 Current Executive
3 Former Executive
Board of Directors (2020-2021)
Meg MacKeigan - Vice President
Peter Higgins - President
Members at Large: