The Man Who Shot Chance Delaney

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It is so great to have a night out; especially a date night with your 12-year-old daughter. 

My daughter luckily still likes to hang out with her Mom on a Friday night, I am not sure how much longer that will last.  Meaghan and I were excited to watch the performance of  The Man Who Shot Chance Delaney together as she performed in a Western play with the Centre Wellington Children’s Drama Club in Fergus not too long ago.   

We settled into our seats and were transported back to the 1900’s to a small town in Kansas where the majority of the play took place in the Lucky Dollar Saloon along with several other locations.  

This two act play was written by Canadian playwright Ian Weir.  I had read about Weir he had a dream of being a writer when he was young, but was told like many artists, “Yes but what will you do to earn a living?” 

We watched the 6 experienced actors who all had multiple roles in the play with delight and awe as they quickly transformed from one character to another mostly without even leaving the stage.  The visual effects of the lighting and set design all made for a great Wild West gun slinging story.

I especially liked the quick flip of an apron strap which changed the lead actress Molly into a totally different character once the strap was properly fastened on the apron. There were the many voices of Perkins, the fast talking Brewster and Abilene who changed from a young women to a little boy with just a flip of a hat.

The storytelling began with a stranger who entered the Saloon and started to share his tales.  Meanwhile at the same time the tales were told by each actor helping to get a better glimpse of how the story unfolded.  The story included like any good Western shootouts, bar fights, and broken hearts.

Chatting with my daughter on the way home she commented, “It was as if there was multiple layers to the characters and you had to listen really closely to see what would happen next!”  I agreed and said “It sure was an evening of great storytelling and was so well done.” 

From the experience my daughter had in a live production, it give us a glimpse of the many hours of rehearsal required for a production. 

Many thanks to the Director of the play Denise Gismondi, Judi McCuaig the Producer and Bev Maintenay the Stage Manager and Assistant Director. 

The GLT has many volunteers that help make the productions run smoothly and I am told they are always looking for more people to come and help them share the love of arts and the Royal City.  

The entertainment continued after the show when we walked into the lobby and a dance party had begun with the Range Riders band playing country music.

If you want to find out Who Shot Chance Delaney and how the story ends you still have time to attend a show, it is running until June 2, 2019. 

Bring a date to either next Friday or Saturday’s evening performance and you can kick up your heels to the Dan Badger Band playing both pre show and post show with the bar open later.    You can purchase tickets at the Guelph Little Theatre, http://www.guelphlittletheatre.com/.

Talk soon ~

Nancy

The Beauty Queen of Leenane

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Are you looking for an escape from the January Blahhhs?  Check out the 1st show of the 2019 season production at the Guelph little Theatre.   The Beauty Queen of Leenane, written by Martin McDonagh is playing until February 3, 2019, with the entire cast of just four fabulous characters.  It was an entertaining afternoon sitting among the almost full house matinée performance.  It seemed as if we were transported back in time to a shabby sparse kitchen set in the hills of Western Ireland.  The inhabitants were the 40 something spinster Maureen who was the caretaker to old housebound Mother Mag’s.  

Act I we meet the bully Mother subtly pestering her daughter Maureen continuously.  She reluctantly fulfills her request of yet another cup of tea and offerings of the Irish Kimberly biscuit.  It was evident their relationship seemed rather unhealthy, as the two didn’t seem very fond of each other as they bickered back and forth in a thick Irish.

My daughter and I were grateful for the glossary of terms used in the play as it was at times hard to understand their thick Irish at times.  An example was the word  “Feck”, which was used thru-out the play.  It is a polite and socially acceptable profanity used by the Irish.  I must say it does sound much nicer than some of the profanity we use here in Canada.  

Maureen lived her day-to-day life looking after an ailing miserable Mother who seemed to enjoy that the daughter’s sole purpose in life was taking orders from her,  all the while tending to other household duties. Mag’s seemed to enjoy dishing out snide remarks to her and kept her focus on tending to all of her many needs.

I sympathized with Maureen’s character at times thru the play when the Mother made bullish remarks to her.  An example was when she told her new suitor Pato that she had spent time in the mental hospital and that in fact she was the care giver to her daughter.   The audience was left wondering then who was the more needier and perhaps more unbalanced, the daughter or the mother? 

Maureen had a chance at escaping her miserable life in Ireland when news came in the form of a letter her lover had written her.  In the letter he asked her to move to Boston, USA with him.  The smitten lover read his letter to the audience and suggested that he would understand if did not forgive him for some of the remarks he made that she took such a disliking to.  One of the the questionable remarks he said was, “put some cloths on!”, as she stood with her under garments on in the kitchen the morning after their encounter in the kitchen.  She was outraged and took this as a personal insult and told him at once to leave.  He abruptly left with the Mother shaking her head and glad for him to be gone.

After some time the brother Ray came one day to deliver a handwritten note which had been addressed to Maureen.  The delivery of the mail did not go as requested.  The Brother eventually lost patience while sitting with the chatty Mags and decided to leave it in her hands with a promise to give it to her daughter.  The audience saw all hope of the daughters chance at happiness vanish as the Mother immediately read the lovers note and threw it into the nearby fireplace. 

However the plot had its twists and turns when Maureen became outraged at the Mother’s knowledge of private information shared only between her lover Pato and her was revealed.  She knew her Mother knew something of their relationship and scolded her Mother’s hand with hot burning water demanding her to tell her what she knew.  When the daughter did this, and threw her to the floor the audience was left wondering what type of person would physically harm another, especially their mother!

The last Act was Maureen coming into the deserted kitchen with no sign of her Mother.  Her lovers brother stops by the house for a brief chat and mentions to her, “Oh did you hear, my brother got engaged?”,  and then promptly left.  Maureen sat in the now empty rocker staring at the four walls.  As with any story there is always more, but you will have to purchase your ticket to find out what happens in this little Irish Town.

This play was being adjudicated for an upcoming Festival, I am sure they will have a great chance at winning some awards.  It is another great production by the great Guelph Little Theatre, directed by Robin Bennett and produced by Liz Dennis.  There is still time to enjoy the show as it runs until Feburary 3rd.  To purchase tickets call the theatre during box office hours at 519-821-0270, or go to the website to purchase online, http://www.guelphlittletheatre.com/tickets.

Talk soon ~

Nancy

My Night at The Ghost Island Light

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Are all Lighthouses haunted?  Remember to “Keep the light on always!”, warned Erin Ward a feisty character sometimes referred to as “normal folk”,  by the newly appointed apprentice Lighthouse keeper Brandon.  It was a night of intrigue, mystery, suspense and laughter all mixed into this must see new comic thriller written by Peter Colley, http://www.petercolley.com/ who was in attendance for the opening night.  He greeted the attendees with an intimate chat and answered a few questions from the audience.   

When the Port Dover Lighthouse Theatre approached him to write a play about a lighthouse, he didn’t hesitate as he had been carrying a story around for years with him, and could finally put pen to paper. His imagination stemmed from stories he had long thought about, with years living close to the water and looking out into the distance of the  lighthouse.  Welcome to “THE GHOST ISLAND LIGHT”!

The Guelph Little Theatre has been entertaining audiences since 1935.  Why would you want to stay home and watch TV with your cat on your lap; when you can watch a live performance and have an exciting night out on the town.  The opening Gala at the theatre was wonderful and as always full of surprises. 

A local artisan Tania, of Infinite Arts was commissioned to create a masterpiece replica Lighthouse with body paint on her lovely model.  Attendees got to see her work on her craft before, during and after the show.  Check out this interview on FB,  https://www.facebook.com/wanderingwellingtoncounty/videos/1041184016057429/?hc_ref=ARSxHThkkOcTL_E-NOLHEr9ez-nE5Lm6bzONYnp4kxzj4ayPZW_7c9uIbLBtVBxvM28&fref=nf.

“The opening night of the Guelph Little Theatre’s show was more on the Comic side”, said Peter Colley as he shared with the attendees that the other 4 productions have all taken a slight twist on the endings including variations on the four main characters who might I say where all cast exceptionally well.

Kudos to the one of two directors whom I met briefly, the talented Pamela Niesiobedzki-Curtis who mentioned in passing only three days to paint and put together the set.  I would not believe that it only took that amount of time, as I felt like we were part of that lighthouse trying to keep the lights on.  I loved the lighting, sound and set design how they all came together to create a mysterious haunted lighthouse, including the large set of stairs required to reach the top.

My girlfriend Kate a fellow theatre lover, like myself commented how she couldn’t believe how quickly the night was going as we were having so much fun!  We had nudged each other more than once, with the many comic episodes of these four characters all sharing their time together, trying to keep the light shining at a haunted lighthouse. Is it haunted?  I am not saying you will have to see for yourself.

I highly recommend you go see this production while it is in town, playing only till April 21st.  You might want to bring a few extra bucks with you so you can purchase a drink at intermission and maybe a 50/50 ticket to support this wonderful organization.  Did I mention I was the big jackpot winner of the draw?  You could be a winner too, it is definitely a number 1 entertainment experience in Guelph!

Buy your tickets before they are sold out, here is the link for the Guelph Little Theatre, http://www.guelphlittletheatre.com/on-stage

Talk soon ~

Nancy

The Ghost Island Light at the Guelph Little Theatre

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Did you want to know a little secret about the Opening Night of the production, “The Ghost Island Light”, which is taking place at the Guelph Little Theatre on April 6th.  The famed playwright who reside’s in California, Peter Colley will be in attendance for the Gala evening performance. 

Since we are sharing secrets, here is another little secret I will let you know about, is that this Wandering Wellington County will be having its first CONTEST, to give a pair of tickets away to one of THE GHOST ISLAND LIGHT, performances.  The third secret is that we may be able to interview the playwright on the evening of the Gala, (just maybe if we are lucky).

If you cannot wait any longer to know a little bit more about this great upcoming play.  Tickets will sell out quickly so be sure to purchase yours today!

Guelph Little Theatre presents The Ghost Island Light
Director: Pamela Niesiobedzki-Curtis & Jayne Simpson

Ghost Island Light is renowned Canadian Playwright Peter Colley’s brand new comedic thriller. You will experience sitting on the edge of your seat moments, interspersed with funny comedic flashes right to the unexpected twist at the end. And while this circa 1910 lighthouse is stuck on a barren rock island with cramped quarters for an older inexperienced keeper, his beautiful young wife and his charming assistant, you will vividly experience thrills and flashbacks to an age gone by.

The eerie sounds of broken organ pipes, thrashing waves upon this thin wooden structure, the haunting beauty of riverboats carrying debutants along a foggy but rocky coast, will instill terror in your heart with the fear that the ever-present stream of light will go out.

Oh please let us hear those loud resonating sounds of the equipment necessary to ensure the light stays on. It must stay on. There are evil spirits lurking in the shadows, definitely haunting this light….and the seagulls scream outside. Do you dare venture forth to experience these thrill at the Ghost Island Light?

 

See you at the performance!

Talk soon  ~

 

Nancy

 

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