Do you en­joy lo­cal pro­duc­tions?

There is no short­age of great shows across Quinte re­gion dur­ing the fall


Fes­ti­val Play­ers of Prince Ed­ward County just fin­ished their Fall Sea­son of two one-act plays. I was lucky to have seen them both since the the­atre was a con­verted store­front in Welling­ton that sat no more than 50 peo­ple. Both plays were fas­ci­nat­ing, en­ter­tain­ing and uniquely de­liv­ered, keep­ing the au­di­ence on the edge of their seats. I’m look­ing for­ward to see­ing what Fes­ti­val Play­ers will be of­fer­ing in 2018 when Gra­ham Abbey, founder of The Groundling The­atre Com­pany, takes over as Artis­tic Di­rec­tor.

Quinte the­atre groups, both pro­fes­sional and non-pro­fes­sional, are pro­duc­ing more and more Cana­dian plays, which is great news. There are also more lo­cally-writ­ten one­acts be­ing pro­duced. The Belleville The­atre Guild and The Vil­lage The­atre re­cently pro­duced one­act evenings and plan to do more. On Oc­to­ber 19, 20 and 22, The Old Church The­atre in Tren­ton will be pre­sent­ing “Sharpen the Acts”, three one-acts writ­ten by Con­rad Beaubien, Matthew Sheahan, and Peter Pay­lor.

On Oc­to­ber 28, a new the­atre space ina store front in down­town Belleville (298 Front Street) will be show­ing two one-act come­dies by Peter Pay­lor be­fore they head off to com­pete in the East­ern On­tario Drama League’ s One Act Play Fes­ti­val.

We take it for granted now, the charm­ing lit­tle the­atre in Stir­ling, but back in the 1980s, it was sched­uled to be torn down. If it weren’t for the ded­i­cated Stir­ling Per­form­ing Arts Com­mit­tee, who worked so very hard to keep it from the wreck­ing ball, it would not be there. Luck­ily it’s been beau­ti­fully re­stored and has been hous­ing con­certs and the­atri­cal pro­duc­tions ever since.

On Oc­to­ber 13 and 14, the Stir­ling Fes­ti­val The­atre (SFT) will present a mur­der-mys­tery din­ner the­atre, writ­ten and di­rected by Ken MacDougall. Many of you will be fa­mil­iar with Ken’s work, which has been pro­duced by SFT for many sea­sons (in­clud­ing their an­nual pan­tos). This play, “Of­fice Par­ties Can Be Mur­der” sounds like fun: “On the eve of his retirement, CEO Gold­man Sacks is throw­ing the big­gest party the com­pany has ever seen. There will be in­fight­ing, of­fice pol­i­tics, se­cret ro­mances and some­one will die.”

Lead­ing up to Hal­loween, the SFT Academy (the young com­pany) will present “Hi­lar­i­ous Haunted Man­sion” from Oc­to­ber 19 to 29.

“A group of kids start a ru­mor that the old house on the cor­ner is haunted. The ru­mor spi­rals out of con­trol and turns into an in­ter­na­tional in­ci­dent!” This play is also writ­ten by Ken MacDougall.

On Oc­to­ber 25, SFT will present a Play Read­ing of Ted Johns’ “He Won’t Come In From The Barn.” Any­one fa­mil­iar with The­atre Passe Mu­raille’s “The Farm Show,” which Ted Johns ‘typed­out and edited’ (it was a col­lab­o­ra­tive ef­fort) will ap­pre­ci­ate this agri­cul­tural com­edy for cyn­i­cal times. “Trou­bled by the changes in his life and by changes in farm­ing, Aylmer de­cides to hole up in his barn, re­sist temp­ta­tion, and pon­der his con­di­tion. Live cows, pigs, and chick­ens con­trib­ute to the far­ci­cal go­ings on!”

Com­ing up at The Vil­lage The­atre in down­town Belleville is “Self Help” writ­ten by one of Canada’s most pro­duced, pro­lific and pop­u­lar play­wrights, Norm Foster. This show will run from Novem­ber 1 to 4.

On Oc­to­ber 20 and 21, Tweed & Com­pany will present the spooky mu­si­cal com­edy “Fight the Moon­light” at the Mar­ble Arts Cen­tre. This show fea­tures an orig­i­nal score by Tricia Black and book by Tricia Black and Caitlin English.

The Belleville The­atre Guild just be­gan its 2017-2018 Sea­son with “Our Town,” writ­ten by Thorn­ton Wilder. This play was first pro­duced on Broad­way in 1938 and won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. The play will run un­til Oc­to­ber 28 at the Pin­na­cle Play­house.

And don’t for­get… there’s gonna be a party at Sans Souci in Belleville on Satur­day, Oc­to­ber 21 start­ing at 8 pm, to cel­e­brate the QAC’s 50th an­niver­sary. Elaine A. Small and Joe Cal­la­han will host this Party and Fundraiser with live en­ter­tain­men­tan­drefresh­ments.Per­form­ers in­clude Jeanette Arse­nault, Joe Cal­la­han, Tim Camp­bell, Louise Ford, Dan Kennedy, the Brian Legere Trio, Lynn Mar­riot, Kyle Mitchell, Elaine A. Small with An­drew Trott, Lenni Stewart and Toni Vani. Master of Cer­e­monies will be mu­si­cian, ac­tor and writer, Peter Snell. Tick­ets are $20 at the QAC (36 Bridge St. E, Belleville, 613-962-1232) and at Sans Souci (240 Front St, Belleville, 613-9682952). Tick­ets are also avail­able on­line at Snapd Quinte. For more in­for­ma­tion about the event, call 613-968-6720 or 613-962-1232.

Gra­ham Abbey, the new Artis­tic Di­rec­tor for the Fes­ti­val Play­ers of Prince Ed­ward County.

Joe Cal­la­han and Elaine A. Small are two of the many mu­si­cians who will be per­form­ing at the QAC’s Birth­day Bash at Sans Souci in Belleville on Oc­to­ber 21.

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