The Big Red Radio Show, which played to a sold out houses in 2010, is a musical tribute to popular CFCY radio host, Loman McAulay. It is also a tour de force for three talented actor/musicians; Jessica Gallant, Nick Whelan and Andrew German,who play a wide range of characters including Loman and fellow host J.P. Gaudet, Betty Large- the Story Book Lady, Muriel Murtagh, the studio manager, Colonel Keith Rogers, the station owner, and the many interesting people he met and interviewed during his record breaking 44 years in radio on PEI . Loman helped to establish Don Messer and the Islanders as a Canadian phenomenon, first in Radio and later on CFCY television. He also interviewed and recorded such up and coming stars as Marg Osborne, Charlie Chamberlain, Gene MacLellan and Anne Murray before they were discovered by the rest of the world. Most importantly, it was the sense of Islandness that he brought to his regular listeners at home and as far away as Maine, Newfoundland and Quebec that made him a household name and earned him the title of “Friendly Voice of the Maritimes.” Conceived and written by Hank Stinson and Wade Lynch with assistance from Colin McAulay.
Blessed Assurance: The Story and Songs of Fanny J. Crosby
In 2015 Young at Heart Musical Theatre for Seniors brought to its audiences the music and life story of one of Christianity’s best-loved hymn writers. Blind from infancy, Fanny J. Crosby overcame incredible odds to become a renowned musician, poet, and social activist. First published in the last half of the nineteenth century, her hymn lyrics are still sung around the world today. Congregations continue to worship with the familiar words of praise in such songs as “Jesus, Keep Me Near the Cross”, “To God Be the Glory”, “All the Way My Saviour Leads Me”, “Praise Him, Praise Him, Jesus Our Blessed Redeemer”, “Pass Me Not, O Gentle Saviour”, “Jesus Is Tenderly Calling” and, of course, “Blessed Assurance, Jesus Is Mine”.
Veteran Island performers Pamela Campbell and Nancy Beck explore Crosby’s experiences and music in their newest collaboration, Blessed Assurance: the Story and Songs of Fanny J. Crosby. Over the years Pam and Nancy have pooled their considerable talents in numerous original productions, including For the Love O’ Burns, Wingin’ It!, and A Nightingale Sang. They toured previously for Young at Heart with their delightful Amazing Gracie. Now they’re focussing all their energies on Blessed Assurance for what promises to be a joy-filled hour of captivating storytelling and vibrant hymn-singing. And they won’t be doing it on their own! Song sheets will be provided and audiences will be encouraged to join in on all their favourite hymns!
Dr. Magnificent’s Travelling Musical Medicine Show,
Dr. Magnificent’s Travelling Musical Medicine Show, by David Archibald and Catherine O’Brien. What do a cowardly Confederate General, an escaped American slave and a French Canadian stevedore and pick-pocket have in common? Together they are Dr. Magnificent’s Travelling Musical Medicine Show, peddling medicinal tinctures across PEI in 1864. This lively, fictional and fanciful musical romp will spark your imaginations and will take a playful poke at the goings on during the PEI conference. Touring seniors’ venues, community centres and halls across PEI from March 24th to May10th, 2014. For more information or to book the show, contact Catherine O’Brien at Catherine@yahtheatre.com
Extraordinary (The Extraordinary Life Of An Ordinary Woman) By Jim Betts
A woman decides to celebrate her 90th birthday in a unique way.
Born during the First World War, married after the Second World War, then a wife and mother in the 1950’s and 60’s, she was among the millions of women of her era who were rarely encouraged to challenge themselves in the wider community. Women were expected to be wives and mothers first. If they were to seek employment outside the home they traditionally had three choices – secretary, teacher, nurse. This woman chose Option #3 and became a nurse. After having her first child, however, she stayed home again.
But against all odds, this woman became extraordinary. Not, perhaps, in obvious ways, but extraordinary nonetheless. Surprisingly, she never realized at the time how extraordinary a woman she had become. Perhaps now, however, at 90, she can finally come to realize what she has in fact accomplished.
In order to help her put her life into perspective, she invites a very special person to her 90th birthday party. She invites her 18 year old self.
It is often easy to contrast the dreams of an 18-year-old with the realities of the same person’s life seen in retrospect 50-70 years later. We are programmed to accept the fact that our dreams will likely not be fully realized, that our high hopes will somehow be diminished by the true ways of the world.
But this woman became a painter. She learned to quilt and sew and create. She found in herself the qualities of an artist.
Her skills as a nurse, even when she was not professionally employed, still made a difference in the lives of people around her.
Somehow, while still a full-time “wife and mother”, she even managed to found and run the second Meals On Wheels organization in Canada.
Quietly, unobtrusively, invisibly – she managed to change the world.
When her 18-year-old self begins to understand whose party she’s at, and how different her future life became in comparison to what she thought it might be, there are recriminations, accusations, disappointments. But when the truth starts to be revealed, there is instead respect, amazement and celebration.
Extraordinary (The Extraordinary Life Of An Ordinary Woman) is a one-hour musical theatre piece for two actors. Its target audience is seniors, although it will resonate with anyone who has come to believe that they will never become the person they set out to be. In its original run with Smile Theatre in Ontario, the audience response was amazing. Women came up to the cast after the show to thank them – somehow the show had in fact made the audience understand how extraordinary their own lives may have been.
The opening song is “Anyone Can Change The World”, and the show goes on to empower its audience by celebrating the “small” victories in everyone’s life.
We are all Extraordinary in our own way, the show reminds us. As it also reminds us that there is a power and an importance to every life, that age is not a factor in one’s ability to contribute. Ageism has no place in Extraordinary – we are perhaps more powerful, if wisdom and experience matter at all, in our 70’s that we were in our 20’s.
Writer Jim Betts was at first nervous about whether this show would have a universal appeal – because he wrote the show to celebrate the 90th birthday of his own mother. He wove the details of his mother’s life into the fabric of Extraordinary, and he worried that the specifics of her accomplishments might not necessarily resonate in others. What he discovered, however, was what writers often hear about but rarely necessarily experience – a piece where the universality of common experience is born from the specific details on an individual experience.
Extraordinary (The Extraordinary Life Of An Ordinary Woman) is a show that should touch audiences of all ages. Its themes touch on socialization of our aging population, ageism, empowerment, accomplishment in the face of disappointment, and wisdom earned through experience.
We are all – in our own ways – Extraordinary.
Canada In Love
Written and Compiled by Stephanie Graham and Rob Torr
Starring April Cook, Kevin Morris and Sean Ferris
Directed and Choreographed by Catherine O’Brien
Musical Direction, Arrangements and Accompaniment by Sean Ferris
Set Design and Properties by Garnett Gallant
Stage Management by Charles Russell
Canada In Love tour to PEI seniors’ venues begins on February 14th and runs to March 17, 2012.
Public shows dates:
Seniors Active Living Centre, Cari complex, UPEI – Feb 18, 7:30 pm
Tickets : $15 seniors and students, $20 adult
Phone: 902 628- 8388
Kings Playhouse, Georgetown PE March 10, 7:30pm
Tickets: $15, and $20
Toll Free: 1-888-346-5666e
The Guild – March 16, 7:30pm
Tickets: $15 and $20 plus surcharge
Conceived by Catherine O’Brien and Julain Molnar
Written by Catherine O’Brien
Musical Arrangements by Julain Molnar and Sean Ferris
Directed by Martha Irving
Starring Julain Molnar, Catherine O’Brien and Amy Reitsma
Fascinating Ladies is a fictional tale set in PEI. Three cousins conspire to put on a concert in honour of their Grandmother’s 100th birthday. In the process they learn a lot about themselves. It is a story about pursuing dreams and the importance of home and family.
This musical will feature some of the most popular “girl group” music of the 20th Century, including songs by the Boswell Sisters, The Andrews Sisters, The Carter Family and more.
The tour begins on Feb 28th with a special opening night at Milton Hall. The show will tour to 32 seniors venues on PEI through March.
Flash In The Pan
adapted and composed by
A musical in which a sourdough reminisces about the Klondike Gold Rush of 1898, telling tall tales, singing whymsical songs and reciting the poems of Robert W. Service.
Flash in the Pan had its professional debut at the Charlottetown Festival, in Prince Edward Island, (Home of Anne of Green Gables) Canada in 1980.
New Poster for Flash In The Pan
Flash In The Pan Program
Through The Gable Window, written by Hank Stinson
Amazing Gracie, written by Nancy Beck and Pamela
Billy Bishop Goes To War, Written by John Gray, Adapted
by Hank Stinson(2008)
The Big Red Radio Show – a new, full length show!
For those of you who missed out on seeing our show this winter, and for
those who did and loved it, we now have a full length show with more