Sum­mer plays com­ing to Gaelic Col­lege

St. Ann’s Bay Play­ers around for 35 years

Cape Breton Post - - NEWS - BY CAPE BRE­TON POST STAFF

For 35 years, the St. Ann’s Bay Play­ers have been pro­duc­ing plays for a wide au­di­ence through­out Cape Bre­ton.

The fare has been mostly Mar­itime, fea­tur­ing Cape Bre­ton, Scot­tish, Ir­ish plays, which re­flect Cape Bre­ton’s ru­ral Gaelic hu­mour, history, and sto­ry­telling tra­di­tion by a tal­ented group of char­ac­ter ac­tors, who know the is­land and its peo­ple well, is com­ing to the Gaelic Col­lege in St. Ann’s.

St. Ann’s Bay Play­ers have been de­scribed as al­ways en­ter­tain­ing, and of­ten chal­leng­ing and thought pro­vok­ing.

Out of the more than 45 plays pro­duced, 20 have been orig­i­nal works by Mar­itime or Cape Bre­ton play­wrights in­clud­ing Bev Brett, the com­pany’s artis­tic di­rec­tor, who last year adapted Alis­tair MacLeod’s short story, “Vi­sion.” Brett also wrote two short lo­cal comedies for the Gaelic Col­lege’s Kitchen­fest and sum­mer theatre sea­son in an ac­claimed and vis­ually stun­ning pro­duc­tion.

This year for Kitchen­fest and sum­mer theatre, the St. Ann’s Bay Play­ers will be stag­ing Cape Bre­ton au­thor and re­cent Giller prize win­ner, Lynn Coady’s short story, “Je­sus Christ Mur­deena.”

Set in the 80s in Port Hawkes­bury, it is a satire of what hap­pens to a small town when a pe­cu­liar but or­di­nary young woman takes up walk­ing. Fea­tur­ing the main char­ac­ters — a mother and daugh­ter duo played by Mur­dena Mac­Don­ald and Jitka Zgola — they are joined by Sue Brown, Nancy Smith, Peggy Jenk­ins, and Yvonne Leblanc, all play­ing mul­ti­ple char­ac­ters in sto­ry­book style.

This will be com­pli­mented by some episodes from “Still Game,” a hit Scot­tish tele­vi­sion show which was orig­i­nally a stage play. Fea­tur­ing two pen­sion­ers Jack and Vic­tor and var­i­ous other ec­cen­tric char­ac­ters, we fol­low their well worn path from pub to fu­neral to pub to store to pub to home. Like a Scot­tish Coro­na­tion Street, the show is ex­tremely funny as well as poignant and bril­liantly por­trayed by Murdock Mac­Don­ald and Ge­orge Dauph­ney.

The Play­ers are also host­ing Cast­ing Mill Theatre from Syd­ney, who will join the Play­ers for the sum­mer theatre sea­son at the Gaelic Col­lege with four per­for­mances of No Great Mis­chief, a play based on cel­e­brated au­thor Alis­tair MacLeod’s novel. Todd His­cock, a mem­ber of the Play­ers, will be di­rect­ing.

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