Visiting performers bonus for P.E.I. economy

Actors from outside P.E.I. performing in seasonal theatre productions are providing a significant bonus to the Island's economy.

Actors from outside P.E.I. performing in seasonal theatre productions are providing a significant bonus to the Island's economy.

Many theatre productions rely on actors and crew from elsewhere to keep the shows going. At Confederation Centre's Charlottetown Festival, about 80 per cent of the performers are from away.

About 80 per cent of the performers in the Charlottetown Festival are not from P.E.I. (CBC)

Dean Constable, general manager of theatre at Confederation Centre, said having artists from other provinces helps the P.E.I. economy.

"They are living here. They are spending their money here, they are renting places here," said Constable.

"That money that's being paid out, a great majority of it is being spent on living expenses, which is being spent on the province of P.E.I."

Toronto's Alicia Toner is playing several roles at the Charlottetown Festival, and will live in the province for several months.

"Rent is a big thing. We love that local P.E.I. lobster, all the fresh seafood," said Toner.

"We really love to explore the Island while we are out here on our days off - rent a car, go to the beach and do all the touristy things that you wouldn't necessarily get to do. We really like to make this our summer vacation."

Toner estimates she's spending about $2,000 a month.

CBC News did a rough tally of the number of actors and crew working in P.E.I. for the summer, and estimated they will spend about $500,000 while working on the Island.

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