About Us

The Coal Mine is a new independent theatre in Toronto's east end, founded by Chief Engineers Diana Bentley and Ted Dykstra. As our first three seasons demonstrated we are determined to present superbly written, richly thoughtful, and fearlessly challenging plays produced, directed and acted at the highest possible level. With only 80 seats a night, The Coal Mine is inspired by the intimacy and excitement of the Off-Off-Broadway experience. This season we are thrilled to bring you two Canadian premieres, including a commissioned translation, one Toronto premiere, and the world premiere of an iconic album in concert. All brought to you by artists you already love, and artists you're going to discover.


Ted has acted, directed, written and/or composed for every major theatre in Canada and around the world, including such great cities as New York, London and Tokyo. He is a proud graduate of The National Theatre School Of Canada, and a founding member of Toronto's Soulpepper Theatre. Arguably best known for co-creating one of the most successful plays in Canada's history, "2 Pianos, 4 Hands," Ted also wrote the hit musical Evangeline (Citadel Theatre, Charlottetown Festival). Recent film and TV appearances include Orphan Black, Reign, Carter and Farenheit 451 for HBO. Over the course of his career he has been the recipient of numerous awards including five Doras, a Gemini, a Sterling, a Merritt and a Chalmers.


Diana Bentley is a Toronto based actor and producer. She is the Co-Chief Engineer of the Coal Mine Theatre, where she also takes to the stage regularly (OrphansInstructions..., and Bull). Her most recent television and film appearances include: FrontierChannel ZeroThe ExpanseHemlock Grove and 12 Monkeys. She is a graduate of the Canadian Film Centre’s Actors Conservatory, and the London Academy of Musical and Dramatic Art (LAMDA). Upon graduation from LAMDA she joined the Soulpepper Theatre Company for appearances in A Month in the Country and Our Town. 


Every show at The Coal Mine has its own team of producers, designers, actors and stage management. This means more opportunities for more people. But the Chief Engineers are grateful to have the team of people listed below to consult with on a regular basis.

Coal Mine Artistic Associates:

Sean Baker
Rae Ellen Bodie
Jennifer Kidson
Steve Lucas
Carrie Sager
Kostis Petridis
Charissa Wilcox