To contact the Marie Dressler Foundation by mail or email, see our About Us page.
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Marie Dressler House
Dressler House is located at:
212 King street West (Hwy 2),
Cobourg, Ontario, Canada.
The Marie Dressler Museum has been expanded and is now called "Canadian Women in Film Museum".
Opening hours for 2023
By appointment only - see About Us page
Visit the new museum's website here for details of how to book your visit at other times
The Marie Dressler Story
Born in Cobourg, Canada - one of Hollywood's greatest stars
The Dressler Story: to Dream, to Dare, to Persist, to Win
Cobourg is the birthplace of Marie Dressler - one of the greatest comediennes of her generation and one of Hollywood's best loved stars.
This is the official site of the Marie Dressler Foundation whose mission is to make sure that Marie Dressler is remembered. The Foundation, a registered charity, was created to raise money to restore her house when it was burnt down in 1989 (More here).
Vintage FIlm Festival
Our largest activity has been the Vintage Film Festival which is held on a weekend in October every year.
Another major activity of the Foundation is to award scholarships/bursaries to students planning to pursue an education in the arts field. There is a list of previous scholarship winners here.
Also available on this site
On November 9, Marie Dressler's 150th birthday was celebrated. She was born on November 9, 1868 and 73 came to her birthday party in the Art Gallery of Northumberland. In addition 18 members of La Jeunesse Choir entertained us. They performed "Singing in the Rain" in honour of Marie who sang this song in the 1929 Hollywood Revue as well as the requisite "Happy Birthday". Actress Carlotta Rutledge portrayed Marie and when the kids made birthday cards for Marie she presented them with presents.
In attendance were MPP David Piccini, Mayor Gil Brocanier and several Councillors. The party was kicked off by the Town crier Mandy Robinson.
The Photos in the slide show below give an idea of the event.
On September 8, there was an opening reception to the Exhibit at the Art Gallery of Northumberland (AGN) that explores the Cobourg community’s relationship with Marie Dressler over the past 90 years. Part of the celebration of Marie’s 150th birthday, it was produced by the Marie Dressler Foundation and curated by Kristina Karakolis. Featuring historical images and documents, it tells the story of Marie with emphasis on her connection to Cobourg. Because of Marie’s film connection, two exhibits use TV monitors to show a video and trailers. The reception featured special 150th birthday cookies and welcomed a number of tourists who were in town at the time. In attendance were Mayor Gil Brocanier, Councillors Suzanne Seguin, Aaron Burchat and Debra McCarthy as well as previous Mayor Peter Delanty and of course the AGN's Executive Director Olinda Casimiro.
See the photos below for more - click any image to enlarge and access captions. Then scroll through them all.
Watch the video below to learn more about the Special Events happening in Cobourg in 2018 to celebrate Marie's 150th Birthday.
On July 7, 2018, bursaries of $1500 each were presented to the four winning students. The photo below is of the four students and the video shows the presentation by Rick Miller (chair of the Foundation) and other board members. The first winner in the video is Graham Beer – many will note that he is generally on the other side of the camera. Witnessing the event were Foundation board members, parents of recipients, the media and a couple of guests visiting from Victoria. Originally residents of Cobourg, Pam Jackson and Pat Archer helped in the original collection of artifacts for the Museum.
The Marie Dressler Foundation Board believes that it’s fitting that Cobourg celebrates its heritage and in particular the Cobourg born star Marie Dressler, by awarding these bursaries.
Graham Beer - Cobourg Collegiate Institute - Presenter: Scott Fraser
Kieva Earle - St. Mary’s Catholic Secondary School - Presenter: Cathie Houston
Ben Hughes - East Northumberland Secondary School - Presenter: Terry Foord
Sydney Stewart - Cobourg Collegiate Institute - Presenter: Rick Miller
Note that the awards for the first three are based on merit and the fact that they are planning tertiary studies in the performing arts but Sydney’s award was also for exceptional community devotion. That award is called the Bill Patchett Devotion to Community Award to honour the community service by Bill Patchett.
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