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Artists in residence in Newton

Ellie King and Ed Griffin will offer classes and workshops at new arts centre.
Longtime theatre buff Ellie King and author/teacher Ed Griffin are artists in residence at the Newton Cultural Centre this month.

Two movers and shakers in the Surrey arts community have been appointed artists in residence at the new cultural centre in Newton.

Ellie King, founder of the Surrey-based Royal Canadian Theatre Company, and Ed Griffin, founder of the Surrey Writers Conference, were named to the posts last week by the Arts Council of Surrey.

King, well known for her Christmas pantomimes and RCTC shows such as Shirley Valentine and No Sex, Please, We’re British, will become the arts council’s theatre and acting artists in residence, working with the group to present classes and workshops in many areas of theatrical arts for age groups ranging from kindergarten to seniors.

Among the skills she will help mentor are interdisciplinary performance art involving visual artists, dancers, singers and musicians; audition techniques for both stage and film and basic how-to workshops for those wishing to enter the film industry.

King’s courses start today (Jan. 21).

Griffin, a published poet, playwright, short story writer and newspaper columnist, also teaches creative writing at Matsqui Prison.

He will become the arts council’s writer in residence; teaching two six-week courses: the first for those with ongoing novels, books or collections of short pieces, will start in January, while the second, an introduction to creative writing, will begin in April.

All classes, courses and workshops will be held at the Newton Cultural Centre (72 Avenue and King George Boulevard).

For more information, or to register for courses, call the arts council office at 604-585-2787 or email