Halifax fire investigating suspicious blaze at Shakespeare by the Sea

Ruth Davenport, Metro Halifax
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HALIFAX - Days before they were set to begin rehearsals for the summer season, the members of Shakespeare by the Sea were cleaning up after a suspicious fire that damaged their Point Pleasant headquarters.

“Not cool guys. Not. Cool,” the theatre company tweeted on Sunday. “Yes, there was a fire. Luckily there was no one in building at the time so we are all safe.”

Halifax Regional Fire crews were called to the building around midnight Sunday. Division commander Corey Beals said the building was fully involved when firefighters arrived.

“Looks like it … started from the exterior and extended up into the roof area,” he said, adding the damage was “pretty extensive.”

“The outside is pretty charred, and we had full involvement in the roof area, in the attic of the roof.”

Shakespeare by the Sea was set to begin rehearsals on Tuesday for the summer season, which includes performances of The Taming of the Shrew and The Merchant of Venice.

“Luckily damage was not near our costumes and the wonderful people of the Halifax [sic] fire department saved all our guitars,” read another tweet from the company.

Beals said the fire is considered suspicious, but investigators haven’t said anything about a possible cause yet.

“It’s considered suspicious because it started on the exterior with no source of ignition on the exterior,” he said. “So our investigators were there, I have yet to hear anything from them with regards to cause and determination.”

Fire crews dealt with two smaller fires along the sidewalk in Point Pleasant Park, but Beals couldn’t say whether those were considered suspicious in nature as well.

Geographic location: Venice, Point Pleasant Park

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