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Left to right from top: Mac Fyfe, Jacob James, Greg Campbell, Richard Clarkin, Richard Alan Campbell, Linda Prystawska, Michaela Washburn, Anand Rajaram

VideoCabaret’s Production of

Production Sponsor



ANTONI CIMOLINO General Director

Twitter hashtag: #ssfWarof1812

DES MCANUFF Artistic Director

Making History with Michael Hollingsworth


by Deanne Taylor


In 1982 Michael Hollingsworth was known for hip black comedies (one of them closed by the Toronto police) and video-rock stagings of Orwell’s 1984 and Huxley’s Brave New World; he may have seemed the playwright least likely to spend the next thirty years writing about Canadian history. But that year, Canada presented a pageant in which a British queen and a Québécois prime minister marked the repatriation of the Constitution. Michael was drawn to the drama, and suddenly became aware that he barely understood its significance. Born to Welsh and Irish parents, he had arrived in Canada at the age of five and, like most Canadians of the TV generation, knew more about the Alamo than the Algonquin. Humbled by ignorance and driven by passionate curiosity, he posed a question – “Why is this country the way it is?” – and set out to answer it. He began ransacking used-book stores, reading original materials at the library and devouring the Dictionary of Canadian Biography, thrilled to find that Canada’s history was as tragic and ridiculous as

any country’s. For a young playwright in search of characters and plots, here was treasure. Michael committed himself to writing a comprehensive cycle of plays to be called The History of the Village of the Small Huts (an early translation of the Huron-Iroquois word Canada), basing his writing on the premise of three founding nations: Native, French and British. His mind was well stocked with plays from every era, and his project inclined him toward the ancient and Renaissance theatres, with their epic stories, teeming characters and minimal sets. As he began to write New France, the outsized characters of Canadian history aligned with stageworthy archetypes – kings and courtiers, warriors and lovers, saints and hypocrites, old husbands and young wives – who personify the eternal tragicomedy of the human heart. With unerring taste for the sublime and the tormented, Michael reduced hundreds of historic figures to forty-eight essential characters, and


papered the walls of his apartment with a totally unproduceable four-hundred-page draft. Working with fearless actors in lively workshops, he rediscovered the old tricks of theatrical “doubling” – early exits, delayed entrances, monologues to hold the stage while costumes are changed – and then devised charts of characters and scenes to track the actors’ paths. The stories of Donnacona and Cartier, Champlain and Anadabijou, Brebeuf and Atironta, Frontenac, Garangula, Les Filles du Roi and dozens more were condensed until they could be staged with a cast of nine on the slim resources of VideoCabaret and Theatre Passe Muraille. Since the première of New France in 1985, Michael has launched a thousand fools upon the stage in twenty-five productions of an expanding repertoire of History Plays. To mount these grand productions on modest budgets depends on the priceless collaboration of many great souls. From the beginning, Michael worked with visionary designers over multiple productions, and each added immeasurably to the ongoing creation of the style. Chris Clifford’s videolandscapes for Michael’s earlier work revealed the power of closely framed gestures, quick highlighted appearances and a limitless cast of characters. In writing the History Plays, Michael reclaimed this dramatic vocabulary for the empty stage with rapid cross-plotting, in pithy scenes, defined by the stage direction: “The lights fade out, in another playing area the lights fade in.” Lighting and set designs by Jim Plaxton (1985–99) and Andy Moro (since 2000) match the playwright’s formal idea, using shards of light to frame the actors, and brief blackouts to edit their appearances and vanishings. To fill these flickering scenes with unforgettable images, Astrid Janson designs hyperbolic costumes that transform the actors’ bodies with bellies, bottoms, breasts or biceps, and instantly establish period and place without further scenery. The props and puppets by Brad Harley and Shadowland, and the wigs by Alice Norton, complete a handmade spectacle of great beauty and wit. The History Plays are ultimately brought to life by seven or eight actors, playing dozens of continuing characters in tiny shards of light with Dervish-level choreography. The challenge has always attracted marvellous actors, forming a slowly changing ensemble whose veterans pass on to newcomers the arts of finding one’s light and not losing one’s moustache. Between productions,

Michael develops new drafts with the company who take the stage with cold pages in hand, channel astonishing characters, track seven character arcs and provoke bellyfuls of laughter. In rehearsal, lighting and sound designs are integrated from day one; the actors intensify their characterizations and trim all but the most eloquent moves or gestures, trusting the precise frames of light to magnify a raised eyebrow. In stylized make-up they play any age, sex or ethnicity; they exit as one character and re-enter thirty seconds later as another; backstage, the intricate dance of costume changes and prop-handling never pauses. Playing with the actors, through thousands of cues are the invisible performers: the late composer and musician Brent Snyder, and the managers of lighting, sound and stage. Michael and his collaborators have created a vast human comedy – a nose-tweaking, beard-pulling, rib-tickling, gut-wrenching satire of Canada’s heroes and hosers, winners and losers – that does answer the question “Why is this country the way it is?” with regular eerie resonance. But finally, it is the audience who make epic theatre possible, who enlarge cardboard swords into armies, who allow a few actors and bits of costuming to conjure a world. In Michael’s generous theatrical vision, many characters contend for the spotlights of history, many players harmonize their artistry, and the most trusted collaborator in the dramatic journey is the audience, for it is on the stage of their imagination that the company plays. Deanne Taylor is Artistic Co-Director of VideoCabaret and Associate Director of The War of 1812. 3

The Story In 1812, America’s War of Independence is almost three decades past, but conflict continues with Britain and with the First Nations. On the Atlantic, American trade with France is blocked and pillaged by the Royal Navy. In the lands south of the Great Lakes, Britain is supplying arms to the Shawnee Chief Tecumseh and his brother the Prophet, who dream of uniting First Nations against the aggressive westward push of American settlers. In Upper Canada (now Southern Ontario), the majority of settlers are originally from the northern states – British Loyalists or recovering republicans who have been granted land and clasped again to the paternal bosom of the King. General Isaac Brock, long expecting an American invasion, has garrisoned the new capital of York (now Toronto) and appointed as chaplain the Reverend John Strachan, who shares his suspicion that many locals are traitors and Yankee spies. As President James Madison prepares for war, American troops burn Prophetstown, shattering the centre of the Native confederacy and forcing Tecumseh into a full alliance with Brock and the British. With the greatest part of the British army fighting Napoleon in Europe, the Native forces are crucial. America declares war on Britain, marches a large force to Fort Detroit and plans to invade Canada with every confidence of a warm welcome and instant regime change. But Brock and Tecumseh invade America with a small force, and Detroit is surrendered immediately; months later, the American attack on Queenston is repelled by British troops, Native warriors and Upper Canadian militia. The war will not be over by Christmas. The battles of Frenchtown, Stoney Creek, Beaver Dams, the Thames, Chateaugay and Lundy’s Lane – and the ravaging of farms and homes between – are seen through the stories of legendary generals and presidents-to-be, Captain Fitzgibbon and the Bloody Boys, farmers Laura and James Secord, and the heretofore unknown soldiers Smith and Thomas. After three years of bloodshed on land and lake, the Yankees have burned York, the Yorkees have burned Washington, and everyone has burned the Natives. In 1814 a peace settlement is signed between America and Great Britain – and the latter, with a combination of ignorance and indifference, abandons the alliance with the Natives south of the Lakes, whose lands are lost forever. The border 4

between America and the Canadas is left exactly where it was in 1811, but atrocious memories and useful myths will heighten allegiances on both sides and shape two distinct cultures. ******* The War of 1812 was originally the final part of The British, a quartet of plays (also including The Plains of Abraham, Pontiac and The Loyalists) about the northern expansion of the British Empire into French and Native territories. The play is deeply researched and richly imagined – characters and events are compressed and dramatized with a liberal use of theatrical license. “History is nothing but a tableau of crimes and misfortunes.” – Voltaire

Canada’s History Plays By Michael Hollingsworth THE HISTORY OF THE VILLAGE OF THE SMALL HUTS New France (Donnacona, Champlain, Brebeuf, Frontenac) The British (Plains of Abraham, Pontiac, The Loyalists, The War of 1812) CWYa[dp_[%FWf_d[WkH[X[bb_edš9ed\[Z[hWj_ed H[ZH_l[hH[X[bb_edš9WdWZ_WdFWY_ÓYIYWdZWb IWiaWjY^[mWdH[X[bb_edšBWkh_[h J^[=h[WjMWh šJ^[B_\[J_c[ie\CWYa[dp_[A_d] MM??šJ^[9ebZMWhšJhkZ[WkJ^[<BG JhkZ[WkJ^[FG šJ^[B_\[J_c[ie\8h_WdCkbhed[o

The History Plays are seriously humorous satires combining comedy, tragedy, pathos and farce to dramatize Canada’s history from Chief Donnacona and Jacques Cartier to Prime Minister Mulroney and President Bush the First. The original productions premièred from 1985 to 1999, delighting audiences with their style and substance. Since 2000, the first thirteen plays have been re-invented for repertory performance, winning new audiences and new awards.

Playwright’s Note The History of the Village of the Small Huts is a comedy of manners, satirizing Canada’s various colonial periods. It is a historical epic for an audience raised on rock and TV. It is the goons of history in their very own Goon Show. It is the Canadian book of the dead, a merry tale told by ghosts and demons. Canada is state-of-the-art colonialism – perfect, immaculate, pure. Double-think is a seminal characteristic of Canadian citizenship. Blink your eyes and you’re a nation, blink your eyes and you’re a colony. Blink your eyes . . . The History of the Village of the Small Huts dramatizes the French and the British imperial periods of Canadian history, and chronicles Canada’s place in the American Nation Planet. The only thing one knows for sure is that the new boss will be the same as the old boss. What is going to happen has already happened. – Michael Hollingsworth



VideoCabaret VideoCabaret has created more than forty productions written and directed by Michael Hollingsworth and Deanne Taylor, including plays, musicals and the multi-media cabarets that gave the company its name. In the late 1970s, the company created the first plays integrating video cameras, piles of hot-wired TVs and live rock ’n’ roll. These genre-mashing spectacles were staged in art galleries and salons across Canada, in New York and in London, England. After its world tour, VideoCabaret moved into the pre-legendary Cameron House, a music and art club on Queen Street West in Toronto. Designer Chris Clifford wired the building for video, joining VideoCab’s second-floor studio and the Cameron stage in a half-real, half-virtual theatre space. In this environment, Michael Hollingsworth staged adaptations of Brave New World and 1984, while Deanne Taylor and collaborators helped define the local zeitgeist with the political cabaret and campaign Hummer for Mayor, involving hundreds of artists and performers. Through the 1980s and ’90s, the company enjoyed residencies and co-productions with Theatre Passe Muraille, Factory Theatre and Theatre Centre. The core artists developed the hypertheatrical style of Hollingsworth’s twenty-part cycle The History of the Village of the Small Huts and honed the “video-cabaret” stagings of Taylor’s plays and musicals about mass-media politics and other themes. The playwrights collaborated on an awardwinning libretto for Rigoletto, and on the script and staging of The Life & Times of Brian Mulroney. Since 2000, VideoCab has created and presented its work in the intimate Backroom of the Cameron House, where Canadian musical greats have always played. This resonant building gathers the full company under one roof and affords it the scope for large productions and long rehearsals. Here VideoCab presents the History Plays, creates new work by the Artistic Directors, supports play development and directing classes for guest artists, and continues a decades-long collaboration with Trinidadian Mas(querade) artists. VideoCabaret’s work has received twentyfour Dora Mavor Moore Awards and scores of nominations, including nominations this year for production, direction, ensemble, lighting and costumes. In 2011, the Silver Ticket Award for 6

outstanding contribution to the development of Canadian theatre was given to Michael Hollingsworth by the previous honourees.

For VideoCabaret Artistic Directors Producer 7hY^_l[7Zc_d_ijhWj_l[ Assistant Graphic Design Rick/Simon Website Designers Photography Video Bookkeeper

Michael Hollingsworth & Deanne Taylor Jim LeFrancois Adam Barrett Avoid Graphics Mark Aikman, Adam Barrett Michael Cooper Bongo Kolycius Nijole Mockevicius

Board of Directors Suzanne DePoe (President), Janet Burke, Marni Jackson, Alice Klein, Allan Novak Advisory Board Gary Farmer, Bongo Kolycius, Leslie Lester, Christopher Pinheiro, Ceta Ramkhalawansingh

VideoCabaret thanks the Stratford Shakespeare Festival for the honour and pleasure of participating in its sixtieth season, and thanks each member of the Festival company for their hard work and warm welcome. VideoCabaret wishes to thank Paul Braunstein, Aurora Browne, Margaret Evans, Kevin Bundy, Jason Jazrawy, Billy Merasty, Aviva Armour-Ostroff, Herbie Barnes, Claire Hopkinson, Roseneath Theatre, Daniel Lynch, Toronto Police Stables’ Sgt. Patterson, Officer PriceElvis the horse, Terry Wedel & Euan Hunter at VO2 Mix, Ellen Roach, Carter West, Matie McPhee, Sherri Catt, Frédérique Chauvin, and Haley Pierce. VideoCabaret gratefully acknowledges the longterm support of the Canada Council for the Arts, Toronto Arts Council, Ontario Arts Council, The Cameron House, NOW Magazine, Nada RistichBMO Financial Group and many Individual Donors.

VideoCabaret’s production of

The War of 1812 The History of the Village of the Small Huts: 1812–15 By Michael Hollingsworth

Artistic Credits Director

Michael Hollingsworth

Associate Director Set and Lighting Designer Costume Designer Composer Sound Designers

Deanne Taylor Andy Moro Astrid Janson Brent Snyder Jake Blackwood, Brent Snyder Brad Harley Alice Norton Melanie McNeill Andrew Dollar Mac Fyfe Laurie Merredew Barb Cassidy, Erika Connor, Lina Falomkina Deanna Brown Marianne Alas Arber Makri Phoebe Norton, Wendy Seater

Props Designer Wigs Designer Assistant Costume Designer Stage Manager Research Assistant Assistant Stage Manager Costume Makers Cutter Milliner Props Assistant Wigs Assistants Toronto Production Assistants

Adam Barrett, Patrick Wilkie


Jim LeFrancois, Deanne Taylor

With additional music by Gin Lane (Peter Alexander, Ken Purvis, Gavin Watt) Actors and stage management appear courtesy of Canadian Actors’ Equity Association.

For the Studio Theatre Production Assistant Production Stage Manager

Brenda Pilatzke Marylu Moyer

Technical Director

Robbin Cheesman

Cast Greg Campbell Chapin, Smith, Prevost, Rensselaer, American Soldier Richard Alan Campbell Harrison, Secord, Mail Man, Sheaffe, American Soldier, Drummond, British Soldier, Madison’s Servant Richard Clarkin Madison’s Cabinet man, Brock, British Soldier, American Soldier, Pike, Scott, Ross Mac Fyfe Madison’s Cabinet man, Shaw, Fitzgibbon, Proctor, American Soldier, British Soldier Jacob James Madison, Strachan, War Cow Tail #1, Boerstler, American Soldier, British Soldier, Willcocks Linda Prystawska Dolly Madison, Laura Secord, Ann Strachan, British Soldier, American Soldier Anand Rajaram Tecumseh, Hull, Thomas, Dearborn, American Soldier, War Cow Head, British Soldier Michaela Washburn The Prophet, Sophia Shaw, Mrs. Hull, British Soldier, War Cow Tail #2, Wyandot Soldier, Salaberry, American Soldier, British Soldier

Interval There will be one 15-minute interval.

Audience Alert This production features soundscapes of war, including recorded representations of musket and cannon fire.

Production Credits Responsibilities backstage during the performance accomplished by:

Stage Carpenter Master Electrician Head of Sound Wardrobe Master Swing Wigs and Makeup Show Head

Bradley Stephenson Tyson Wentworth Greg Morris John Bynum Georgina Schinkel Alana Scheel

Acknowledgements Special thanks to Norman Cruz, MD, Stratford; Jennifer Anderson, MD, St. Michael’s Hospital, Toronto; Brian Hands, MD, FRCS (C), medical voice consultant, Vox Cura voice care specialists, Toronto; Simon McBride, MCISc, MD, London Health Sciences Centre Vocal Function Clinic, London; John Yoo, MD, London Health Sciences Centre, London. Pianos tuned and maintained by Don Stephenson. Front cover photography by Michael Cooper. 7

Director of Production

John Tiggeloven

Head of Properties Properties Buyer Assistant Properties Buyer

Production Technical Director â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Scenic Construction Wardrobe Manager Production Administrator Design Coordinator Assistant Technical Director Technical Management Assistant Administrative Assistant Resident Sound Designer Interim Director of Music Music Administrator Electronics Technologist Transportation


Andrew Mestern Anne Moore Cheryl Bender Alix Dolgoy David Campbell Michael Besworth Cindy Jordan Peter McBoyle Franklin Brasz Marilyn Dallman Chris Wheeler Charlie Fox, Ian A. Fraser, Michael Taylor, James Thistle

Scenic Art Head Scenic Artist Assistant Head Scenic Artist Assisted by

The Birmingham Conservatory for Classical Theatre From General Director Antoni Cimolino and Artistic Director Des McAnuff Twenty-five members of the Stratford Shakespeare Festivalâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 2012 company have come out of our professional training program, the Birmingham Conservatory for Classical Theatre. Founded in 1998, the Conservatory has helped to launch the careers of some of our leading young actors, many of whom we have had the great pleasure of directing. Providing opportunities for young Canadian artists is part of our mission at the Festival, and we hope you will find it as satisfying as we do to watch their growth as they share the stage with some of the finest actors in the world. Under the leadership of Martha Henry, the Conservatory is made possible by the support of the Birmingham family, the Stratford Shakespeare Festival Endowment Foundation and the Department of Canadian Heritage. Supporting the 2012 in-season work of Birmingham Conservatory participants are Karon C. Bales & Charles E. Beall, The Brian Linehan Charitable Foundation, Robert Summers-Gill, and Alice & Tim Thornton. We thank them for helping us to nurture and support these talented artists in our 2012 company:


Dona Hrabluk Tracy Fulton Penelope Schledewitz

Christopher Klein Daniel McManus Kevin Kemp, Lisa Summers, Michael Wharran, Steve Wiseman, Blair Yeomans

Alden Adair 2011 Sarah Afful 2011 Kyle Blair 2001 Skye Brandon 2008/09 Dan Chameroy 2003 Laura Condlln 2004 Victor Dolhai 2010/11 Josh Epstein 2010 Ryan Field 2011 Stephen Gartner 2001 Carmen Grant 2010/11 Deborah Hay 1999 Brad Hodder 2011

Luke Humphrey 2011 Bethany Jillard 2011 Ruby Joy 2011 Ian Lake 2007/08 Kennedy C. MacKinnon 1999 (coach) Gareth Potter 2003 Christopher Prentice 2008/09 Andrea Runge 2009 Tyrone Savage 2010/11 E.B. Smith 2010/11 Evan Stillwater 2004 (tailor) Sophia Walker 2005


Scenic Carpentry Head Carpenter Head of Automation Lead Hand Assisted by

Wardrobe Neil R. Cheney Ian Phillips John Currie Simon Aldridge, Jeff Baici, Jeremy Bernard, David Butler, Gary Geiger, Paul Hyde, Stephen Morgan, Wayne Nero, Kirk North, John Roth, Joe Saunders, Mark Smith, Geoff Taylor, Cliff Tipping, Joe Tracey

Head of Wardrobe Assistant Head of Wardrobe Seasonal Wardrobe Supervisor Wardrobe Buyer Assistant Buyer Wardrobe Apprentice Warehouse Supervisor Warehouse Assistant

Wigs and Makeup Head of Wigs and Makeup

The Michael Langham Workshop for Classical Direction “The Michael Langham Workshop for Classical Direction will continue Michael Langham’s tradition of mentorship in a risk-free environment, allowing directors to develop their craft with the rich history and evolving artistry of the Stratford Shakespeare Festival.” – Des McAnuff We extend our thanks to the Department of Canadian Heritage, RBC, the Philip and Berthe Morton Foundation, Johanna Metcalf, and Karon C. Bales and Charles E. Beall.

Bradley Dalcourt Elizabeth Copeman Linda Sparks Michelle Ashbourne Caitlin Luxford Chevy Barlow Madonna Decker Valerie Lariviere

Participants in the 2012 workshop: Eric Benson Heather Davies Alan Dilworth Andrea Donaldson Darcy Evans Varrick Grimes Kevin Hammond Rachel Peake Mumbi Tindyebwa Otu Kristen van Ginhoven Aaron Willis

Gerald Altenburg

Funding for artisan apprenticeships is provided by the William H. Somerville Theatre Artisan Apprenticeship Fund, funded by the J.P. Bickell Foundation, and by Robert and Jacqueline Sperandio. A member of the Professional Association of Canadian Theatres, the Stratford Shakespeare Festival engages, under the terms of the Canadian Theatre Agreement, professional artists who are members of Canadian Actors’ Equity Association. Stage crew, scenic carpenters, drivers, wigs and makeup attendants and facilities staff are members of Local 357 of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE). Wardrobe attendants are members of IATSE Local 924. Scenic artists are members of IATSE Local 828. The Festival acknowledges with thanks the co-operation of the Stratford Musicians’ Association, Local 418 of the American Federation of Musicians.


Adam Barrett

Stratford debut: Toronto production assistant for The War of 1812. Elsewhere: For VideoCabaret: digital mechanic, in particular the creation of the VideoCab Archive and online Play Gallery; box office for The Great War and The Life and Times of Mackenzie King. For Fringe: Actor in numerous Fringe sensations, including Ambiguous (Afterglow Theatre), Dirty Girls (knockabout theatre) and his own script, theUrbanFarmShow. Film: Actor: Lost Girl, Trigger, that McDonald’s commercial a while back. Production manager: Sky Gilbert’s upcoming Some Arguments About Buddhism. Associate producer: LIAR, by Adam Garnet Jones. Production coordinator: Trigger, by D. MacIvor, directed by B. Macdonald. Et cetera: Since blindly diving headfirst into the filing cabinets at the VC Studio, Adam has become passionate about preserving Toronto’s rich theatrical history, and loves nothing more than finding old VHS tapes.

Stratford debut: Stage manager of The War of 1812. Elsewhere: The Life and Times of Mackenzie King, The Great War, Laurier, The Canadian Pacific Scandal and The Red River Rebellion (VideoCabaret); Live Wrong and Prosper (The Second City Theatre); Double Bill and The Aleph (Soulpepper Theatre Company); Girl in the Goldfish Bowl, The Dishwashers, The Fantasticks and The Glass Menagerie (The Red Barn Theatre); Them & Us, Thunderstick and The Rediscovery of Sex (Theatre Passe Muraille); The Drowsy Chaperone (Best Man Productions and Mirvish Productions); McGillicuddy and The Passion of Narcisse Mondoux (The Blyth Festival); Enoch Arden and Bebe (The Theatre Centre). Training: Ryerson Theatre School.

Jake Blackwood

Mac Fyfe

Greg Campbell

Brad Harley

Stratford debut: Sound co-designer of The War of 1812. Elsewhere: The Life and Times of Mackenzie King, The Great War (sound designer and operator, VideoCabaret); And Tell Sad Stories of the Death of Queens, Ambiguous (composer and sound designer, Afterglow Theatre Company); Fighting Fire with Snow, Adrift, Speaking of Which (production designer, World’s End Theatre Company). Training: Humber School of Creative and Performing Arts. Et cetera: Jake is a musician, composer, sound and set designer based in Toronto. He has written and composed for numerous plays in various cities across Canada, designed for the stage in Toronto and in Newfoundland, and is currently working on an EP for his third solo musical project, Forest Fires.

Stratford debut: Acting ensemble, The War of 1812. Elsewhere: The Life and Times of Mackenzie King, The Great War, Laurier, The Saskatchewan Rebellion, The Canadian Pacific Scandal, City for Sale, Confederation (Dora nomination), The Mackenzie/Papineau Rebellion (VideoCabaret); Feste (Twelfth Night) (Direct Flight/Gromkat); Bud (Mesa), Jacob Mercer (1949) (Theatre North West); Frank (Educating Rita), John (Oleanna) (Theatre and Company); Venticello (Amadeus) (Theatre Aquarius); Nicodemus/Enid (The Mystery of Irma Vep) (Sudbury Theatre Centre); The Mother’s Saint (Theatre Passe Muraille); Hello Again (Tarragon); Sheree (Suzie Goo: Private Secretary), Tales of the Parkside (Buddies in Bad Times); Ben Weatherstaff (The Secret Garden) (Globe Theatre); Tumnus (Narnia) (Theatre New Brunswick). Film/TV: The Kennedys (History); Covert Affairs (USA Network); XIII (Showcase); Static, Bottom Feeder (Peace Arch); Breach (Universal); The Call (Lifetime). Et cetera: Greg would like to thank Hume for his constant love and support.

Second season: Acting ensemble, The War of 1812. Stratford: The Elephant Song (Michael), King John (Mayor). Elsewhere: Joe in The Life and Times of Mackenzie King, Robert in World War I, Louis Riel in The Saskatchewan Rebellion (VideoCabaret); Romeo in Romeo and Juliet, Ariel in The Tempest (RTC). Film/TV: John in Being Erica (CBC), Nephi in In God’s Country (CTV), Boy in Elimination Dance (Bruce McDonald/Shadowshows).

Stratford debut: Props designer for The War of 1812. Elsewhere: The History of the Village of the Small Huts (VideoCabaret), almost every one of them since the beginning of time. With Shadowland Theatre (selected design highlights): Hansel & Gretel: A Case Study (writer, designer), Crude-mentary Tales, The Light That Stands Still, The Essence of Ambrose Ichor, Ashkenaz Festival parades since 1995. Art House Cabaret (costume design, Buddies in Bad Times Theatre). Internationally: Horse and Bamboo Theatre (U.K.), Bread and Puppet Theater (U.S.), Peter Minshall in Trinidad carnival. Film: A Travelling Medicine Show (Amnon Buchbinder, art direction). Website: Co-founder, Shadowland Theatre, voted Toronto’s Best Grassroots Theatre, NOW Magazine. www. Awards: Three Dora Mavor Moore Awards for Outstanding Costume Design. Mr. Harley thanks the generosity of the theatre community for allowing him to do exactly what he has always wanted to do.

Richard Alan Campbell

Michael Hollingsworth

Richard Clarkin

Jacob James

Stratford debut: Acting ensemble, The War of 1812. Elsewhere: Six other productions for VideoCabaret, including Laurier, The Great War and The Life and Times of Mackenzie King (Dora nomination); other selected credits: The Tempest, The Taming of the Shrew (Theatre by the Bay); Ruined (Mr. Harari, Obsidian/Nightwood); It’s a Wonderful Life/A Christmas Carol (TNB); King Lear (Duke of Gloucester, Driftwood Theatre); The Graduate (Mr. Robinson, The Grand); Sideshow of the Damned (Eldritch Theatre); King John (King John), Titus Andronicus (Titus), Othello (Iago), The Merchant of Venice (Antonio) (Shakespeare in the Rough); Audience Unveiling Protest (Vanek) and Waiting for Lefty (Doc Barnes, Fayette, The CO.). Film/TV: Charlie Bartlett (MGM), 5ive Girls (5ive Girls Films), Murdoch Mysteries, Mayday, Warehouse 13. Et cetera: Richard thanks Alysa for constant encouragement, enduring optimism and love. “And Michael Hollingsworth for inspiration and genius.”

Second season: Acting ensemble, The War of 1812. Stratford: The Merchant of Venice (Salerio), King Lear. Elsewhere: The Great War, The Red River Rebellion (VideoCabaret); Festen, A Whistle in the Dark (Company Theatre); The Eco Show, Half-Life (Necessary Angel); Ring Round the Moon, Twelfth Night (Soulpepper); The Lion King, Death of a Salesman (Mirvish); The Fighting Days, The Price, Waiting for Godot, Mating Dance of the Werewolf, The Beauty Queen of Leenane (MTC); Sherlock Holmes, Dinner with Friends (Aquarius). Film/TV: Goon, You Are Here, Casino Jack, The Five Senses, The Firm, Lost Girl, The Listener, Heartland, Republic of Doyle, Murdoch Mysteries, Flashpoint. Training: National Theatre School of Canada. Upcoming: Speaking in Tongues (Company Theatre/Belfry).


Andrew Dollar

Stratford debut: Playwright and director of The War of 1812 and the play cycle known as The History of the Village of the Small Huts. Elsewhere: Co-founder and Artistic Co-Director of VideoCabaret. Awards: Four Dora Mavor Moore Awards and many nominations for Outstanding Play and Direction; Silver Ticket Award, 2011.

Seventh season: Acting ensemble, The War of 1812. Stratford: The Tempest (Ariel), Love’s Labour’s Lost (Moth), Noises Off (Tim), Sticks and Stones (Will), The Merchant of Venice (Salarino), Twelfth Night (First Officer), London Assurance (Joseph), As You Like It (Forest Lord/Youth), many others. Birmingham Conservatory: King Lear (Oswald), As You Like It (Touchstone). Elsewhere: Twelfth Night (Aguecheek, New York Shakespeare Exchange); Russian Play/Essay, The Drowsy Chaperone, The 39 Steps, Billy Bishop Goes to War (Thousand Islands Playhouse); The Life and Times of Mackenzie King (Vince/Bennett/Hitler – VideoCabaret). TV/Film: The 99 (animated series), Urban Legends (A&E), Guns and Waffles (independent). Training: National Theatre School, Birmingham Conservatory (Stratford Shakespeare Festival), Second City Conservatory. Et cetera: Jacob is honoured to return to Stratford and dedicates his work this season to the loving memory of his friends and mentors William Hutt and Richard Monette.

Astrid Janson

12th season: Costume designer of The War of 1812. Stratford: A Delicate Balance, Harlem Duet, The Seagull, Richard II, Macbeth, The Cherry Orchard, Death of a Salesman, Sweet Bird of Youth, Long Day’s Journey Into Night, The Stillborn Lover, Othello, HMS Pinafore. Elsewhere: Otello (Norrlands Operan, Sweden); Alice in Wonderland (Augsburg Ballet, Germany); seven seasons with Soulpepper, most recently Doc; Fernando Krapp (Canadian Stage). Other theatres include the National Ballet, Canadian Opera Company, Citadel, National Arts Centre, MTC, Houston Ballet, Paris Opera Ballet. Eleven Village of the Small Huts history plays for VideoCabaret, most recently The Life and Times of Mackenzie King. Many films for TV, most recently Nureyev. Awards: Thirteen Dora Mavor Moore Awards, Silver Ticket Award for lifetime achievement, Gemini Award (Shadow Pleasures), Toronto Drama Bench Award.

Jim LeFrancois

Stratford debut: Producer of The War of 1812. Elsewhere: Jim is an award-winning artist and producer of contemporary Canadian theatre. Credits include 10 seasons at Buddies in Bad Times Theatre (leaving the post of Artistic Producer in 2009); numerous shows for VideoCabaret (The Life and Times of Mackenzie King, The Great War, The Mackenzie/ Papineau Rebellion, The British, New France and The Life and Times of Brian Mulroney). Awards: Dora Mavor Moore Award (Outstanding New Musical, ArtHouse Cabaret, co-devised with David Oiye), the inaugural Leonard McHardy and John Harvey Award (2008) and a Harold Award. Et cetera: Jim is also writing/composing a new musical; the soundtrack and virtual storyboard will be released in the fall. “Many thanks to Michael and Deanne for inspiration – in life, and art.”

Melanie McNeill

Stratford debut: Assistant costume designer of The War of 1812. Elsewhere: Spelling 255 (set and costume designer, Carousel Players); The Night of the Iguana, Macbeth, Bullet for Adolf, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, High Fidelity (Hart House Theatre); Doc Wuthergloom’s Haunted Medicine Show, Madhouse Variations (set and costume designer, Eldritch Theatre); The Last Days of Judas Iscariot (costume designer, Birdland Theatre); Andromache, Hamlet (assistant costume designer, Necessary Angel); The Last Five Years (set designer, Angelwalk); and seven seasons with VideoCabaret. Film/TV: Todd and the Book of Pure Evil (assistant costume designer, SPACE). Awards: Dora Mavor Moore Award. Training: Ryerson Theatre School.

Laurie Merredew

Stratford debut: Assistant stage manager of The War of 1812. Elsewhere: Assistant/apprentice stage manager: The Life and Times of Mackenzie King, The Great War (VideoCabaret); The Tempest (Theatre by the Bay). Apprentice stage manager: The Great Gatsby (The Grand Theatre); Our Town, The Time of Your Life (Soulpepper Theatre Company). Training: BFA in theatre production and design, York University. Et cetera: Laurie would like to thank Deanne, Michael, Andrew and everyone at VideoCabaret for welcoming her into their family and bringing her along on this amazing journey! Laurie would also like to thank her parents for their constant support and encouragement.


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ANTONI CIMOLINO General Director

DES M ANUFF Artistic Director

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Andy Moro

Stratford debut: Set and lighting designer of The War of 1812. Elsewhere: Andy is the founding co-director (with partner Gabriela Caruso) of Kensington Market’s Red Pepper Spectacle Arts, which facilitates multidisciplinary community arts projects across Ontario and into the far north. The two also facilitate the Production and Design Program at the Centre for Indigenous Theatre. In addition to his 17 years with VideoCabaret, Andy has designed sets, projections, lights and/or sound for da da kamera, Topological Theatre, Cabaret Company, Dancemakers and Halfbreed Productions. Recent works include Waawaate Fobister’s Agokwe at Buddies, Sky Gilbert’s The Situationists, Native Earth’s Free as Injuns and Beyond the Cuckoo’s Nest at YPT. Awards: He is a multi-awardwinning designer and twice recognized in NOW’s top 10 Toronto theatre artists.

Marylu Moyer

32nd season: Production stage manager of the Studio Theatre. Stage manager of The Best Brothers. Stratford: As part of the stage management team since 1986, Marylu has worked on 40 different productions in the Festival, Avon, Tom Patterson and Studio theatres and also as Production Stage Manager of the Avon and Tom Patterson theatres and the 2010 and 2011 Michael Langham Workshop for Classical Direction Directors’ Workshop Presentation. Elsewhere: Recently Marylu stage-managed A Christmas Carol for Theatre Calgary and Shakespeare’s Will for the Globe Theatre. Elsewhere she has worked for theatre companies across Canada and as far away as Singapore, stage-managing shows such as Anne of Green Gables, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Harry Chapin: Lies and Legends, Hedda Gabler, Into the Woods, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Our Town, Passion, Syringa Tree and The Phantom of the Opera. Awards: Marylu was the recipient of a 2009 Tanya Award.

Alice Norton

Stratford debut: Wigs for The War of 1812. Elsewhere: The History of the Village of the Small Huts (VideoCabaret, 2003 to present); Andromache, Hamlet (Necessary Angel/Theatre Babel), El Numero Uno (Young People’s Theatre), e-dentity (Theatre Gargantua/Mirvish), ArtHouse Cabaret (Shadowland/BIBT), Opera to Go (Tapestry New Opera). Performance Art: In Pursuit of Happiness (Tanya Mars). Dance: Spinster’s Almanac (Susie Burpee). Film: Dr. Theo’s Travelling Medicine Show (Amnon Buchbinder/Shadowland). Training: Bruno’s School of Hair Design, Liverpool School of Architecture. Teaching: Haircuts by Children (Mammalian Diving Reflex). Et cetera: Alice’s background in carnival and parade and her penchant for caricature have been essential ingredients in the success of her collaboration with Astrid Janson and VideoCabaret. She also runs her own salon, House of Big Hair, on Toronto Island. “As for Alice Norton’s wigs – well, just imagine if Frank Gehry were a hairdresser!” NOW, 2007.

Linda Prystawska

Second season: Acting ensemble, The War of 1812. Stratford: Antony and Cleopatra (Octavia), Troilus and Cressida (Helen of Troy), The Taming of the Shrew. Elsewhere: This marks Linda’s fifth show with VideoCabaret, following The Life and Times of Mackenzie King, Laurier, The Great Pacific Scandal and The Red River Rebellion. Born in Luzern, Switzerland, and raised in Ottawa, Linda divides her time between acting and teaching. For the last two years, Linda has enjoyed life in the quaint town of Lębork, Poland, as an English teacher. Favourite Canadian theatre credits include Angels in America, Trainspotting (Canadian Stage); George F. Walker’s Adult Entertainment, Escape from Happiness (Factory Theatre); Claudia Dey’s Beaver (Passe Muraille); Macbeth, A Midsummer Night’s Dream (YPT). Et cetera: Many, many thanks to Linda’s parents, Walter and Viki, for their love, support and generosity and to Michael and Deanne for their unwavering vision. 13

Anand Rajaram

Second season: Acting Ensemble, The War of 1812. Stratford: Rice Boy (various). Elsewhere: Five seasons with VideoCabaret; Cowboys and Indians and Communist ’Til Payday (@N@f@N@); Reloaded, Bird Flu Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Tip of the Melting Iceberg (Toronto Second City); Flock of Flyers and Nuit Blanche (Corpus); Rice Boy (Canadian Stage). Film/ TV: Horses of McBride (CTV), Men with Brooms (CBC), The Dating Guy (Teletoon), Suits (USA Network), The Listener (CTV), Calcutta Taxi, You Are Here, Certain Prey, Suck. Training: University of Waterloo. Websites:, www., Et cetera: Anand is thrilled to be back with VideoCabaret for their Stratford debut. He occasionally teaches shadow puppetry in schools and is always on the lookout for tips about raw food recipes. If you have any, he’d love to hear from you.

Michaela Washburn

Stratford debut: Acting ensemble, The War of 1812. Elsewhere: The Rez Sisters (Factory, Theatre North West); White Biting Dog (Soulpepper); Such Creatures (Passe Muraille); Salt Baby, Death of a Chief, Dreary and Izzy, The Unnatural and Accidental Women (Native Earth); Spirit Horse (Roseneath); Three Little Birds (Workshop West); Quilchena (halfbreed productions); The Saskatchewan Rebellion (VideoCabaret); FareWel (Magnus). Film/TV: Breakout Kings (A&E), By the Rapids (APTN), The Thaw (Anagram), Rez Bluez (APTN, Sun TV). Awards: Nominated for the 2011 K.M. Hunter Artist Award – Theatre; Dora nomination, Such Creatures. Et cetera: Upcoming this fall, Michaela’s first play, Water Under the Bridge, co-written with Carrie Costello, premières with Carousel Players, while she sets off on tour with Theatre Network in Where the Blood Mixes. Michaela is grateful to her partner, Michelle, for her incredible love and support.

Deanne Taylor

Stratford debut: Associate director of The War of 1812. Elsewhere: Cofounder and Artistic Co-Director of VideoCabaret; playwright and director of City For Sale, Canada or Can’t, Hummer for Mayor and many other plays, musicals and mock-news cabarets.

Patrick Wilkie

Stratford debut: Toronto production assistant for The War of 1812. Elsewhere: This is Patrick’s seventh show with VideoCabaret; his credits with the company also include The Life and Times of Mackenzie King, The Great War, Laurier, The Red River Rebellion, The Canadian Pacific Scandal and The Saskatchewan Rebellion.

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War of 1812 - Stratford Programme  

from VideoCabaret's The War of 1812 at The Stratford Festival, Summer 2012

War of 1812 - Stratford Programme  

from VideoCabaret's The War of 1812 at The Stratford Festival, Summer 2012