Fire forces evacuation of Edmonton’s Varscona Theatre

Fire crews are seen outside the Varscona Theatre in Old Strathcona after smoke was reported on Jan. 25, 2017. Supplied: Jason Hardwick

A Thursday night performance has been cancelled after a fire at the Varscona Theatre in Old Strathcona.

Crews arrived at the theatre in the area of 103 Street and 83 Avenue at 1:07 p.m. after someone reported seeing smoke and flames coming out of the vents.

READ MORE: Curtain to soon rise on new Varscona Theatre in Edmonton

The theatre sent a tweet at around 2:45 p.m. saying Thursday’s performance of Slumberland Motel had been cancelled, but that the performance on Friday night would continue.

The theatre also thanked Edmonton Fire and Rescue for keeping everyone inside safe.

Actor Jason Hardwick said he and about 15 people were inside rehearsing with the Plain Jane Theatre Company when they started to smell something burning.

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“We smelled something off and then smoked starting pouring in through the vents,” he said.

Hardwick said he believed everyone got out safely.

Photos on social media and sent to 630 CHED show smoke coming out of the back of the theatre and fire trucks parked outside.

READ MORE: Edmonton company needs help to open new live theatre venue in Old Strathcona

Edmonton fire said the small blaze started in either the electrical room or the sprinkler room. Investigators will now begin looking into the cause and damages.

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No one was injured in the blaze. Crews had it under control at 1:19 p.m.

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