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Shaw Theatre Festival Announces 2010 Principal Casting and Creative Teams

Media Release #30

Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, November 25, 2009 … Artistic Director Jackie Maxwell announced today the principal casting and creative teams for the Shaw Theatre Festival’s 2010 season.  The season runs from April 1 to October 31 on the Festival’s four Niagara-on-the-Lake stages and feature ten productions, as well as the popular reading series of contemporary Shavian writers.

I am thrilled to announce the casting for our 2010 season as it showcases the growth of some of our wonderful young actors, revels in the depth of talent throughout the company, sees the welcome return of several treasured company members and provides some exciting new names to watch out for. Our creative teams feature the cream of Canadian design, partnered with a slate of directors, musical directors and choreographers who are already deeply immersed in creating the worlds you will see next season. A potent mix to give life to next season’s provocative playbill.  ~ Jackie Maxwell.


Jackie Maxwell directs Oscar Wilde’s edgy exploration of politics and marriage, An Ideal Husband featuring Patrick Galligan as the husband in question, Sir Robert Chiltern, Catherine McGregor as his wife Gertrude, Steven Sutcliffe as the debonair and insightful Lord Goring and welcomes back Moya O’Connell as the devious Mrs. Cheveley.  The cast also features Mary Haney, Lorne Kennedy and Marla McLean.  Designed by Judith Bowden with lighting design by Kevin Lamotte and sound design and original music composed by John Gzowski

The virtuosity of the Ensemble’s female members is exhibited in The Women.  Directed by Alisa Palmer, Clare Boothe Luce’s wickedly sardonic peek into the boudoirs of the Manhattan elite features Jenny Young, as the jilted Mary Haines, and Deborah Hay, as her dubious best friend Sylvia Fowler, with Beryl Bain, Nicolá Correia-Damude, Sharry Flett, Mary Haney, Laurie Paton, Jenny L Wright and  Moya O’Connell.  Returning to join this illustrious group is Shaw favourite Kelli Fox.  Designed by William Schmuck with lighting design by Kevin Lamotte

Directed by Morris Panych, the increasingly relevant The Doctor’s Dilemma by the Festival’s namesake, features Patrick Galligan as the conflicted doctor Sir Colenso Ridgeon, Krista Colosimo as the young and alluring Jennifer Dubedat, Michael Ball as the eminent psychiatrist Sir Patrick Cullen and Thom Marriott as Sir Ralph Bloomfield Bonington.  Jonathan Gould, as Louis Dubedat, returns to The Shaw after a brief absence and Patrick McManus and Ric Reid are also featured in this typically surprising Shavian “dilemma”.  Set design by Ken MacDonald, costume design by Charlotte Dean and lighting design by Alan Brodie.                                                       


Jason Byrne directs Tom Murphy’s adaptation of Anton Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard featuring Goldie Semple as the aristocratic Madame Ranyevskaya, Jim Mezon as her brother Leonid Gayev and Benedict Campbell as Yermolai Lopakhin, the harbinger of progress and the new merchant class. The cast also features Neil Barclay, Al Kozlik, Julie Martell, Mark Uhre and Robin Evan Willis and welcomes back Severn Thompson to the company. Designed by Peter Hartwell with lighting design by Kevin Lamotte.

Christopher Newton, Artistic Director Emeritus, directs this season’s second Shavian offering, John Bull’s Other Island.  This delicious exploration of colonialism features Benedict Campbell as Tom Broadbent, the English businessman consumed by the romance of Ireland, Graeme Somerville as his lapsed Irish business partner Larry Doyle and Jim Mezon as defrocked priest Peter (Father) Keegan, with Guy Bannerman, Corrine Koslo, Thom Marriott, Patrick McManus and Severn Thompson. Designed by William Schmuck with lighting design by Louise Guinand

Directed by Jackie Maxwell, Linda Griffiths’ sensual story of female liberation, Age of Arousal, features Donna Belleville as Mary Barfoot, an ex-suffragette who runs a typing school, and Jenny Young as Rhoda Nunn, a conflicted New Woman, with Sharry Flett, Kelli Fox, Gray Powell and newcomer Zarrin Darnell-Martin. Designed by Sue LePage with lighting design by Alan Brodie and movement by Valerie Moore


Joseph Ziegler directs the Mary Chase, Pulitzer Prize-winning play Harvey featuring Peter Krantz as the genial, but misunderstood, Elwood P. Dowd, Corrine Koslo as his society-conscious sister Veta Simmons and, returning to the Shaw stage, Norman Browning as Dr Chumley, with Guy Bannerman, Gray Powell and Diana Donnelly, who also returns to The Shaw this season.  Designed by Sue LePage with lighting design by Louise Guinand.

Directed by Associate Director Eda Holmes, the musical caper One Touch of Venus (music by Kurt Weill, lyrics by Ogden Nash and book by Ogden Nash and S.J. Perelman) features Robin Evan Willis as the goddess Venus, Kyle Blair as shy barber Rodney Hatch, Deborah Hay as the whip smart Molly Grant and Mark Uhre as wealthy art collector Whitelaw Savory, with Neil Barclay, Gabrielle Jones, Julie Martell and Jay Turvey. Musical direction by Ryan deSouza, choreography by Michael Lichtefeld, set design by Camellia Koo, costume design by Michael Gianfrancesco and lighting design by Bonnie Beecher

Gina Wilkinson, who made her Festival directorial debut with the 2009 runaway hit Born Yesterday, returns to direct J.M. Barrie’s shocking real time tale Half an Hour featuring Diana Donnelly as Lady Lillian Garson and Peter Krantz as Lord Garson, with Norman BrowningPeter Millard and Wendy Thatcher.  Designed by Tyler Sainsbury with lighting design by Kirsten Watt.                                                                                                                    


The Shaw’s on-going look at contemporary Shavians continues with Caryl Churchill’s no-holds barred satire of the 1980’s stock exchange, Serious Money.  Directed by Eda Holmes, this vintage Churchill features Marla McLean as Scilla Todd, Graeme Somerville as Corman, Ali Momen as Zackerman and Ken James Stewart as Jake Todd  with Anthony Bekenn, Lisa Codrington, Nicola Correia-Damude, Lorne Kennedy, Laurie Paton, David Schurmann and Steven Sutcliffe.  Designed by Peter Hartwell with lighting design by Kevin Lamotte.

Reading Series:
Each season, members of the Ensemble take part in staged readings of specially selected full-length works that illuminate and complement the plays of the current season.  To read more about the 2010 Reading Series, please click here 

The Shaw Theatre Festival acknowledges the on-going support of the Ontario Arts Council and the Canada Council for the Arts, as well as the generous support from this season’s Production Sponsors: Bell, CIBC, Lombard Insurance Company, Paradigm Capital Inc, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, Producers Circle, Scotiabank Group and TD Canada Trust Music 

Tickets for the 2010 season went on sale to Shaw Theatre Festival Members on November 7.  Sales to the general public begin January 11 by mail, fax or online and January 16 by phone or in person.


In the spirit of George Bernard Shaw, the Shaw Theatre Festival provokes the mind and stirs the soul through a theatre experience so compelling that, year after year, ever-broadening groups of artists, audiences and supporters are drawn to our work in Niagara-on-the-Lake and beyond.

Please visit our website at www.shawfest.com/news for other Shaw Theatre Festival media releases.  For more information, or to download images from our image bank to accompany this release, members of the media may contact:

Odette Yazbeck
Public Relations Director
(905) 468-2153 or 1-800-657-1106 ext. 2222

Jenniffer Anand
Public Relations Co-ordinator
(905) 468-2153 or 1-800-657-1106 ext. 2224

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