Ms. Angela Boychuk announced her retirement from teaching this spring after 26 years at Elmwood. This news marked the culmination of an outstanding career -- one that spanned over two decades and helped shape the lives of countless Elmwood students.
A devoted and skilled educator, Ms. Boychuk wore many hats throughout her time at Elmwood -- Teacher, Director of Theatre, Instructional Leader of the Arts -- while remaining a conscientious colleague and friend. She will be deeply missed and remembered by all for her passion, dedication, and creative spirit.
Throughout her tenure, Ms. Boychuk developed annual productions as Elmwood’s Director of Theatre -- most recently directing a reimagining of Hans Christian Andersen’s The Red Shoes. Her students also participated annually in the CAPPIES Critics and Awards Program, an international program that brings together high school drama and journalism students from across the community.
At the final CAPPIES Gala held at the National Arts Centre in May 2015, 2016, 2017, and again in 2019, Elmwood Theatre was awarded ‘Best Play’ by the CAPPIES critics for their productions of The Madwoman of Chaillot, Les Belles Soeurs, Blue Stockings and The Light Burns Blue. In June of 2016, Ms. Boychuk directed her students in a new work by Ottawa playwright, Jean Duce Palmer, entitled Miss Bruce’s War at the Ottawa Fringe Festival. The two performances played to sold-out houses and the show was nominated for a Capital Critics Circle 2016 award for Best Student Production. Elmwood Theatre has also performed three times at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in Scotland -- in 2013, 2015, and 2018 -- under the auspices of the American High School Theatre Festival (AHSTF).
She also brings to her thirty years of teaching, fifteen years of professional experience working in the Canadian Performing Arts in the area of dance, theatre, and music, including the Alberta Ballet Company & Dance West Productions, the Ontario Stratford Festival, and the National Arts Centre Orchestra.
Although this chapter of Ms. Boychuk’s life is now coming to an end, she is by no means leaving the theatre world behind; she fully intends to pursue new creative projects within the Ottawa community. She also remains committed to Elmwood’s theatre program through her affiliation with recent alumni -- including Sophia Swettenham ‘17, a recent graduate who worked on eight Elmwood Theatre productions with Ms. Boychuk.
Sophia, who is currently studying Theatre in New York City, had the following to say about Ms. Boychuk’s retirement:
“One of the greatest lessons I learned from Ms. Boychuk is that if you want to create anything meaningful, you have to give your entire self to it. Ms. Boychuk gave her entire self to every class, every rehearsal, every tech, every show week. With her, every idea was valuable and there were no limits to what we could do.”
Though Ms. Boychuk will be deeply missed here at Elmwood, there is no doubt she will carry this same passion, creativity, and spirit into the next phase of her life. We wish her all the best on her retirement journey.