“Only Drunks and Children Tell the Truth” – Humorous drama at Firehall Theatre

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Written August 13, 2017

(Gananoque, ON)

It isn’t easy to talk about the past, especially about events that are painful to all involved.  It can be even more difficult to look at it with laughter and light, turning tragedy into a comedy that can reach all people.  However, Ojibway playwright Drew Hayden Taylor has done exactly that with “Only Drunks and Children Tell the Truth”. Continue reading

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The Thousand Islands Playhouse Presents Two Plays to Take You Places

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Beneath Springhill rehearsal

written by Lorraine Payette, July 25, 2016

Whether you are heading “Beneath Springhill” or “Into the Woods”, the Thousand Islands Playhouse has wonderful times in store.

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Into the Woods rehearsal

“‘Beneath Springhill’ is the incredible story of Maurice Ruddick, ‘the singing miner,’ an African-Canadian who survived nine days underground during the historic Springhill mining disaster of 1958,” said the Playhouse.  “This multi-award-winning one-man show recalls the events during the disaster, the effect it had on the rural Canadian community, and the racial tension that grew from it.  The play is a celebration of hope, courage and community.” Continue reading

Blithe Spirit Out to Prove There Are Laughs after Death

 

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Media preview shots

by L. Lorraine Payette, written June 23, 2016

(Gananoque, ON)

Poor Charles (Stephen Gartner).  Writers have troubles at the best of times, and getting good research is only one of many.  He was sure he had it all worked out – he would hold a simple séance at his home with local clairvoyant and medium, Madame Arcati (Anita Wittenberg), and not only would he, his wife Ruth (Krista Colosimo) and his friends, Doctor Bradman (Christopher Weddell) and Mrs. Bradman (Janet Michael), participate in some good clean fun, but there should be more than enough material.  His maid, Edith (Kelsey Gilker) would handle dinner and arrangements, and things would be perfect.  And so they were, until his deceased wife Elvira (Shannon Currie) decided to liven up the evening with a few antics of her own…

Welcome to Noël Coward’s “Blithe Spirit”, a spooky little comedy bent on keeping the eternal triangle exactly that – eternal.

“Noël Coward is famous for his scintillating dialogue, and Blithe Spirit doesn’t disappoint,” says artistic director Ashlie Corcoran of the show’s playwright. “This is my favourite play by Coward because of the element of the supernatural.  It takes aim at both society’s interest in and mockery of the world of the occult.  This play transcends satire and manages to both amuse and scare
audiences.  The show provides exceptional roles for women, and I am excited by all the opportunities to create design and stage magic!”

Several of the cast will be familiar to Playhouse attendees.  Returning are Krista Colosimo (Don’t Dress for Dinner, Boeing Boeing), Shannon Currie (Dear Johnny Deere, Waiting for the Parade), Janet Michael (Waiting for the Parade), and Anita Wittenberg (Waiting for the Parade, Boeing Boeing).  Fresh faces come in with debut performances from Stephen Gartner, Kelsey Gilker, and Christopher Weddell.

One of the season’s three co-productions with Western Canada Theatre in Kamloops, the play promises to be a lot of fun while it brings that old black magic to life.  Set and costume design is by Dana Osborne and beautifully recreates the ‘30s.  Stage Manager Isabelle Ly provides special effects, which are full of ghostly fun.  The entire support crew has worked to put together an experience that will leave you chuckling and amazed.

“Blithe Spirit” runs from June 17 – July 16, 2016, at the Springer Theatre, 185 South Street in Gananoque, Ontario.  Running time for the play is 2 hours including intermission.  Show times are Tuesday 7:30, Wednesday through Saturday 8:00 pm, with matinees on Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday at 2:30 pm (starting the Sunday after opening night).  Student matinee is May 26 at 11:00 a.m. and is presented by the TD Bank Group.  Tickets are $32 for adults, $30 for seniors age 65+, <30 Club $20.  HST is applicable to all ticket prices.  For more information, please go to www.1000islandsplayhouse.com or contact the box office at 613-382-7020.

 

A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline Glistens with Greatness

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official theatre photos property of Thousand Islands Playhouse

written by Lorraine Payette, June 3, 2016

(Gananoque, ON) Patsy Cline has come to Gananoque, and the Thousand Islands Playhouse may never be the same again.  As Little Big Man spins the platters and reminisces, the music flows on down and everyone – everyone – is invited to join right in and sing along to those amazing hits from yesteryear.

Alison MacDonald doesn’t just play the part in “A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline” – she is Patsy, from the moves to the look to that one and only voice. Continue reading

New Season Opens with “A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline”

 

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by Lorraine Payette, written May 24, 2016

(Gananoque, ON)  It’s time to go out walking after midnight with a brilliant two-person musical based on the life and career of superstar Patsy Cline.  As the opening show at the Thousand Islands Playhouse, it promises to be everything her fans could want and more.

Returning to the Playhouse for this production are actress Alison MacDonald as Patsy Cline, musicians David Archibald and Bob Arlidge, costume designer Jayne Christopher, assistant stage manager Michael Barrs, set designer Ross Nichol, and director Daryl Cloran.  New to the Springer Theatre stage are actor Tyler Murree as Little Big Man, musicians Dan Charbonneau and Duncan Holt, stage manager Lisa Russell, lighting designer Davida Tkach and sound designer Ben Malone. Continue reading

2016 Season at the Thousand Islands Playhouse Destined to Fill Summer with Magic

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A handful of the faces both new and familiar who will be gracing the stages at the Thousand Islands Playhouse this season.

By Lorraine Payette, Written May 10, 2016

(Gananoque, ON)  After a winter of roller coaster weather, it’s hard to wait for the start of what could be the hottest and coolest season yet at the Thousand Islands Playhouse.

“Our 2016 season is right around the corner, and I’m so excited to be welcoming our incredible creative teams and cast members from across Canada,” said Ashlie Corcoran, Artistic Director.  Continue reading

A Rollicking Romp at the TI Playhouse with “Don’t Dress for Dinner”

by Lorraine Payette, written July 26, 2015

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Show Pictures by the Thousand Islands Playhouse

(Gananoque, ON) The Thousand Islands Playhouse has a new hit on its hands in the three theatre cooperative production of “Don’t Dress for Dinner” by Marc Camoletti. The Playhouse’s own little three-way in cooperation with the Gateway Theatre of Richmond, BC, and Western Canada Theatre in Kamloops had audiences laughing out loud as our favourite philanderers were up and at it once again.

More of a sequel than a spin-off, our friend Bernard (Todd Thomson) is now married to the glamorous Jacqueline (Alison Deon), but this doesn’t mean he’s given anything up. When his wife plans to visit her mother for the weekend, he decides to bring his best friend Robert (Kirk Smith) to act as a live-in smoke screen while he romances his sexy Parisian mistress, Suzanne (Krista Colosimo). But, Jacqueline discovers that Robert will be there, so she postpones her weekend away in order to spend some hot and heavy time with HER lover… – to read more>

Pirates of Penzance Stealing Hearts at TI Playhouse

by Lorraine Payette, written June 30, 2015

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Show shots by Jay Kopinski

“Take any heart – take mine!”
– Mabel, “The Pirates of Penzance”

(Gananoque, ON) A gang of ruthless pirates/rum runners have landed in Gananoque and are out to steal your hearts at the Springer Theatre from June 19 until July 18. Well, not exactly Ruth-less, for without their dear, slightly addled Ruth (Shelley Simester) there would be no story.

As we enter the tale, we are about to celebrate Frederic’s (Adam Charles) 21st and it is she who tells us how it all began. A loyal, loving nurse, she only tried to follow her employer’s wishes and apprentice young Frederic as a pilot. But, being hard of hearing, she apprenticed him instead as a pirate, and so began his life of crime, running rum with the most tender-hearted pirates in the world as they go up against the American prohibition and the zaniest Coast Guard around. – to read more>

Playhouse Presents Outstanding Production of “Educating Rita”

by Lorraine Payette, written October 3, 2014.

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Rehearsal Photos

Rita is a challenge, not unlike Eliza Doolittle (My Fair Lady) or Maria (The Sound of Music). Bright, eager, dying to learn, she explodes into the life of Frank, a cynical booze-soaked professor filling and killing his hours at the local university while picking up extra money tutoring “open university” students. We strike pure gold as she who seeks a bright beautiful future made possible only by higher education runs smack up against he who has decided that it’s all a sham. – – to read more>

Waiting for the Parade Keeps the Home Fires Burning

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Rehearsal Photos

written by Lorraine Payette, September 3, 2014

Time would come for roll call,
Time for us to part,
Darling I’d caress you
And press you to my heart…
– Lilli Marlene (translated by Tommie Connor, 1944)

(Gananoque, ON) World War II was a hard time for everyone involved, but it had a special significance for those who stayed behind, the women who kept the home fires burning. Always waiting, always hoping, always dreaming of the day when they would once again bring the family circle together they did everything they could for their men so far away and for all of those at home as well.

Waiting for the Parade focuses on five of these iconic women from Canadian history – each with her own loved one, each with her own reasons to stay strong, drawn together by fate to create a special friendship only people in such a situation could ever develop. One awaits her sons, another her husband. Two have husbands who have remained at home while the fifth carries the burden of being a German immigrant and daughter of a suspected Nazi sympathizer. Yet each has her own strengths, her own weaknesses, and contributes in her own way to make the interminable war time bearable for herself and the others. – to read more>