Donald Sutherland

Donald Sutherland

In his time at the University of Toronto, Donald Sutherland was heavily invested in the artistic community at Hart House Theatre. During his time he was very interested in the Drama program and took part in many productions with the UC Follies even though he had never seen a play before his time there.[1.  Liz Czach, “Donald Sutherland Biography,” TIFF, n.d.,] One of his notable performances while at the Theatre was his work in the 1957 production of The Tempest; Sutherland played the role of Stephano to critical acclaim from both The Globe and Mail and Toronto Star.1 After graduating the University of Toronto with a double major in Engineering and Drama, Sutherland moved on the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts.2 Hart House Theatre, however, obviously had played a key role in his artistic development, so when in 2001 the Theatre was threatened with a shutdown if they could not raise a “7 million dollar theatre endowment and a $1 million capital improvement fund,” Sutherland decided to help. 3 Both Donald Sutherland and Lorne Michaels sat as honorary co-chairs of the Hart House Theatre Campaign, which achieved its goal, saving the Theatre and allowing renovations to begin in 2007.4 Sutherland described his passion for the theatre during its campaign “It’s a theatre with arms that embrace you, comfort you, push you, applaud you. It gives birth to people who make theatre. It nurtures them. It guides them. It sets them free and they wear the mantle of that theatre for the rest of their lives.”5


Show 5 footnotes

  1. Stacey Gibson, 2014 “Shakespearean Simpleton | By Stacey Gibson | University of Toronto Magazine,” accessed January 20,
  2. Czach, Liz. “Donald Sutherland Biography,” TIFF.
  3. “Hart House Theatre Needs YOU!” 2014, accessed January 20,
  4. Carla DeMarco. 2014. “Coming Soon to a Theatre Near You | By Carla DeMarco | Lorne Michaels U of T Hart House Theatre Memories | University of Toronto Magazine.” Accessed January 20.
  5. Hart House Theatre, “Hart House Theatre Campaign,”