A Shining Moon at ESA

May 16th, 2019 § 0 comments permalink

Mary goes to the Etobicoke School of the Arts, where one of the Grade 12 drama one-act plays this year is Salt-Water Moon. We saw the show this afternoon, and it is so beautiful! I'm very happy we were able to attend.

Director Katie Hillyard-Beale said in her pre-show speech that she'd seen Ravi Jain's production of the play at Mirvish, and had, from that moment onward, been determined to direct it for her final school project. She called Emma D'Agrosa and Max Grosskopf her "dream cast," and after seeing the show, I know why.

The production is thoughtful, moving, and full of life. The two well-matched performers fully inhabited Mary Snow and Jacob Mercer, whose shared past and economic circumstances are standing in the way of their love for one another. The direction hit all the right notes: as the two spar, flirt, and finally open their hearts to one another, we see the pain, love, (and sense of humour) that they share.

Congratulations to Katie, Emma, Max, and crew, as well as the Grade 12 Drama teachers!

Salt-Water Moon Tour: Windsor, Lion’s Head, Kirkland Lake

May 15th, 2019 § 0 comments permalink

I'm happy to report that Lionel Walsh of the University of Windsor will be directing an Inspired Acting Lab production of Salt-Water Moon this summer. David got to know Lionel when he was the Playwright-in-Residence at UW, and the two of them had a great year together. Lionel and company have done many David French plays throughout the years, and Mary and I feel a real connection to the UW program and its students.

Salt-Water Moon, presented by the Northern Bruce Theatre Company, will open in Windsor and then tour to Lion's Head and Kirkland Lake. It stars James Kern as Jacob and Sofie Jarvis as Mary. If you can see it, please do! I know that it will be a special show.

Performance Dates + Locations:  

WINDSOR : July 11, 12, 13 @ 7:30 p.m.
Studio Theatre, Jackman Dramatic Art Centre, University of Windsor

LION'S HEAD : July 18-20 @ 7:30 p.m. and 21 @ 2 p.m. and 25-27 @ 7:30 p.m.
Rotary Hall, 59 Main St., Lion’s Head, ON. (Cash Bar)

KIRKLAND LAKE : July 31 – August 3 @ 7:30 p.m
LaSalle Theatre, 100 Government Rd W, Kirkland Lake, ON

Soldier’s Heart in Clarenville

May 15th, 2019 § 0 comments permalink

A new production of Solder's Heart is running this week at the Eastlink Centre in Clarenville, presented by the New Curtain Theatre. Break legs tomorrow at opening, everyone!

Mirvish Presents Salt-Water Moon

April 15th, 2017 § 0 comments permalink

poster_SWM-show In October, the lovely Salt-Water Moon that Factory produced last season will have a short run at the Panasonic, one of the Mirvish theatres. Directed by Ravi Jain, the show stars the wonderful Mayko Nguyen and Kawa Ada. This production has been called a "reimagining," as Ravi has stripped the play down to its essence: no set, no costumes, no Newfoundland accents. It's a Salt-Water Moon like no other, and it found a whole new audience at Factory. It's exciting to have the production moving to the Panasonic, into one of Toronto's commercial theatres. I can't wait to see the show again! Tickets are available from Mirvish.com.

King’s Playhouse Salt-Water Moon

July 10th, 2016 § 0 comments permalink

Mary and I arrived in beautiful PEI last week and were delighted to discover that the King's Playhouse in Georgetown is presenting Salt-Water Moon on Sunday evenings throughout the summer. We're looking forward to seeing it! Here's their charming graphic, and a link to their website. Screen Shot 2016-07-10 at 7.55.10 PM  

A Dora for Ravi!

June 27th, 2016 § 0 comments permalink

2016_Dora-Awards I was lucky enough to be at the 2016 Dora Mavor Moore awards, thanks to my friend Byron Bellows, who is a trustee of the Bluma Appel Community Trust. It was a lovely night, with the ceremony happening at the outdoor theatre at Harbourfront. Great fun to see so many familiar faces and so much style! I was especially pleased to be present as Ravi Jain won the Best Director Award for his production of Salt-Water Moon at Factory. Congratulations to Ravi and to the whole creative team of the show! Artist residents, Soulpepper

SWM Opening on Friday at Factory!

February 24th, 2016 § 1 comment permalink

The next few weeks will be very exciting for Mary and me and the whole French family. Factory Theatre's production of Salt-Water Moon is in previews right now, and it opens on Friday. Next week, Jitters will begin previewing at Soulpepper. We're delighted to have two of David's plays running at the same time at two of the best theatres in the city.   First up, Salt-Water Moon at Factory! Ravi Jain, the director, says the team has been having a wonderful time in rehearsals. Toronto audiences will remember Ravi from A Brimful of Asha, his funny, warm, and candid family play -- in which Ravi appeared opposite his mother. Ravi is also the artistic director of the Why Not Theatre company.   The two actors who star in Salt-Water Moon are Kawa Ada, recently seen in Soulpepper's Accidental Death of an Anarchist, and Mayko Nguyen, perhaps best known for her role as Mayko Tran on the television series ReGenesis.  
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Kawa Ada, who plays Jacob Mercer

Here are photos of the two stars of the show, along with a snapshot I took of Mary, posing by the Factory billboard for the play. Can't wait to see it!    
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Mayko Nguyen, who plays Mary Snow

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Mary at Factory

    ***                  

*****

   

Leaving Home in Santa Monica

February 7th, 2015 § 0 comments permalink

Barbara Tarbuck, director of a production of Leaving Home by the Ruskin Group Theatre in Santa Monica, sent me this wonderful promo video. The show opened last night -- sure wish I had been there to see it! Enjoy.  

The Dedication of David French Lane

August 28th, 2014 § 0 comments permalink

On June 22, 2014, David French Lane was officially dedicated with a City of Toronto ceremony. About 65 friends and family members came to celebrate on that sunny Sunday morning. At the event, Rory Sinclair and Tim Grant of the HVRA spoke, and then I said a few words about what the neighbourhood meant to David, which I will condense here:

A sense of place was very important to David’s work and to his life. His plays are often associated with Newfoundland, where he began, that island that shone vivid in his imagination. And of course, he loved PEI, where he spent 40 summers. But in fact, the majority of David French’s plays were set here, in Toronto. He lived most of his life in this city. From the lean-to at the back of Mr. Nutt’s shoe repair shop where his family moved in the 1940s, to the houses on Oakwood and on Euclid. He went to Rawlinson Public School, to Oakwood Collegiate, and also to Harbord Collegiate, just down the street from here. David moved into the upstairs apartment at 254 Brunswick Avenue in the mid-1970s. It was a place with great neighbours who became lifelong friends. It was close to the Tarragon Theatre, to bookstores, and to a movie theatre -- some of the things David considered essential. He could have morning coffee and conversation at a friend’s apartment, or read his paper at JJ Muggs. All-day breakfast at Paupers Pub. Dinner at the Other Café, at the end of the street. And although some of the people and places changed throughout the decades, David stayed right here. He loved this ‘hood. It was part of him. And of course, David spent many, many hours writing plays at our kitchen table, which overlooks this very lane…

After the ceremony, the sign was unveiled and Rory played the beautiful pipe tune “The Battle of The Somme.” Afterward, many of us went to Paupers for a nosh and a drink.

The naming of the David French Lane means so much to his daughter Mary, to me, and to all of his family and friends. I’d like to thank the City, the HVRA, (Rory Sinclair and Jan Muszynski in particular) for making sure that David is now literally on the map. It’s a great honour, and we will always be grateful.

I’d like to thank everyone who came to share the day with us!

On The Map

August 24th, 2014 § 0 comments permalink

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