Mr. Speaker, it is with great sadness that we learned of the death of former journalist and founder of the Stratford Festival, Tom Patterson, on February 23, 2005, at the age of 84.
The Stratford Festival owes its existence to the dream of this local journalist who founded the event in the 1950s.
Innumerable artists, directors and other Canadian and foreign theatre professionals have participated in its productions, enlarging the audience for the work of William Shakespeare.
Alex Guinness and Christopher Plummer are among the most notable actors who have played on the Stratford Festival's stage.
Mr. Patterson has left us the legacy of the Stratford Festival. “Without Tom Patterson, there would not be a Stratford Festival in Canada”, underscored its artistic director, Richard Monette, while highlighting the extraordinary vision of this man.
Mr. Patterson was made a member of the Order of Canada in 1967.
On behalf of the Government of Canada, I want to express our appreciation and offer my sincere condolences to his family and friends.