Theatre Panache was founded by current artistic director Heather Markgraf-Lowe as a non-profit professional theatre company dedicated to developing new talent and producing and touring new Canadian work. The company is a successor to Hudson Productions which helped found Village Theatre in Hudson, Quebec and produced most of the Village Theatre shows in the tent beside Mon Village Restaurant and "Shirley Valentine" in the renovated old railway station in Hudson.
From 1993 to 1997, Hudson Productions produced an average of three professional productions per year and presented them at Village Theatre in a large, 200-seat tent. Among the plays produced were, “Love Letters” by A. R. Gurney, “I Ought to be in Pictures” by Neil Simon, “Salt Water Moon” by David French, “Thirteen Hands” by Carol Shields and “You're a Good Man Charlie Brown” by Clark Gessner.
As founder and former artistic director of Village Theatre, Heather presented these shows, directed many of them and acted in several. From 1997 to 2003 she presented annual summer seasons at Village Theatre West in the old train station in Hudson and more serious and challenging shows during the fall and winter. She is now using the experience gained during these 15 years in Canadian theatre to build Theatre Panache.
Since 2003 Theatre Panache has produced two new Canadian musical theatre productions, "Brigit's Reel" by Marc Desormeaux and Trish Barclay at the Centaur Theatre in Montreal and "Till We Meet Again" by David Langlois at the DB Clarke Theatre in Montreal. Theatre Panache also produced "Brigit's Reel" at the Piggery in North Hatley and "Till We Meet Again" for two tours of Ottawa, Toronto and Montreal, the most recent in 2009 when the show played six theatres and sold about 10,000 tickets.
Locally, at its home in Hudson, Theatre Panache has developed a series of locally themed plays called the Riversmead Affair, set in a historic Hudson home. It has also participated in the local Greenwood StoryFest for which it developed the theatrically oriented "Stories on Stage". In 2010 the last episode of the "Riversmead Affair" was integrated with the fall edition of "Stories on Stage".
In a new initiative in the spring of 2011, Theatre Panache produced "Shirley Valentine" by Willy Russell after the previous year's successful run of the play as a dinner theatre in Newboro, Ontario in the Rideau Lakes region. In Newboro in 2011, we produced "Love Letters" by A. R. Gurney. For StoryFest 2012 Theatre Panache produced Mrs. Dexter and Her Daily by Joanna McClelland Glass at the Hudson Village Theatre..