Writing Home Exhibit

September 3rd, 2011 0 comments

A couple of weeks ago I had a visit from Michael Wallace of Theatre Museum Canada. Michael and Judi Pearl and Gerry Grace from the National Arts Centre are putting together an Ottawa exhibit about David that will coincide with the upcoming NAC production of Salt-Water Moon.

Here's the beautiful poster image for that show:

The display is titled “David French: Writing Home” and it’s going to feature information about David’s career along with memorabilia from Salt-Water Moon and the other Mercer plays.  It’s being mounted as part of the nationwide Culture Days celebration.

Before Michael arrived I found a few things that I thought he and his NAC co-curators might be interested in and gathered them together. Well!  It turns out I had underestimated both the scope of the exhibit and the zeal of the curators. After a couple of hours at our apartment, Michael exited carrying boxes filled with clippings and photos and objects of interest – even the French family Bible!  (This was the book that introduced David to literature. When he was a boy his granny French, who had gone blind, would ask him to read passages to her.  David said she was very fond of “Song of Solomon.”)

The incredibly knowledgeable Michael (who, by the way, stage-managed the premiere production of That Summer at the Blyth Festival,) is doing a great job of preserving our theatrical past.  Click here for a link to Theatre Museum Canada to find out more about the museum -- and to view interviews with legends of the Canadian theatre, including RH Thomson’s interview with David, taped last year. (The button to choose David's interview is located about halfway down the page, on the lefthand side.)

I’m very excited about “David French: Writing Home,” and I hope many of you will have a chance to see it.  The exhibit will be available for viewing from September 30 through November, which includes the run of Salt-Water Moon at the NAC (October 18 – November 5.) Click here to link to the NAC site.  I’ll be travelling to Ottawa for the official vernissage and show opening on October 21st.

There will also be an online version of the exhibit, so I’ll keep you posted about that.

PS. While on the subject of museums, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the Victoria LOL #3 Museum and Playhouse in Bay Roberts, Newfoundland, which houses David’s old Smith-Corona typewriter, along with many other items of interest.  You can find a link to this wonderful local museum, operated by Jerry and Brenda Mercer, here.

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