Antony Holland has been performing all over the world since he was first introduced to acting 85 years ago.
Holland, 93, is the oldest working actor in Canada, and is one of the founders of Langara’s Studio 58.
In fact, Holland gave Studio 58 its name.
Before Studio 58 moved to Langara College in 1970, it was located at the former King Edward High School.
“I was tired of telling people who visited that we were in a room called 0058, so I just called it Studio 58. And it stayed that way,” said Holland.
Holland was the artistic director until 1985, when Kathryn Shaw took over.
However, on Nov. 30, Holland will return to Studio 58 to perform One Man in His Time. The show covers Holland’s experiences in World War II.
“I’m probably the only veteran who’s translated his war experiences into a piece of theatre,” said Holland.
The show is a fundraiser for Studio 58 scholarships.
Before moving to Vancouver in 1957, Holland was enlisted in the British Army during World War II. At the time of conscription, he was studying at a drama school in London.
While in Egypt during the War, Holland often put on shows for his colleagues.
“I was originally trained as an actor, and I didn’t want to lose that entirely,” said Holland. “I had no wish to join the army.”
Holland currently lives on Gabriola Island, where he started the Gabriola Theatre Centre.
Jim Wilson-Storey, the president of the Gabriola Arts Council, has known Holland for 10 years.
“This guy’s got more energy than people 30 or 40 years younger than him,” said Wilson-Storey. “He gets on stage and he drops 20 years right away.”
Holland said acting and performing keeps him healthy and he hopes to never fully retire.
“It energizes me,” said Holland.
Reported by Andrea Anthony