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The Farm Show: Then & Now

The First Farm Show (and Origins of the Blyth Festival) Reviewed by Lauren daSilva The Farm Show: Then & Now, is a love-letter to rural Ontario. This adaptation of one of the most influential plays in Canadian theatre, The Farm Show, is a beautiful reimagining that sheds light on the process of creating The Farm Show, while maintaining the essence of the original work. First produced in 1972 in a barn outside of Blyth, The Farm Show was responsible for the founding of the Blyth Festival three years later. Playing from June 12th to August 4th at Blyth Festival’s outdoor Harvest Stage, The Farm Show: Then & Now is an expertly-done revisiting that reminds audiences of the impact that the original production left on Blyth, and then the world. The Farm Show: Then & Now follows the original actors of The Farm Show in their initial research on farmers and rural families from the Clinton area on the 15 mile line. While The Farm Show: Then & Now introduces new characters, it remains true-to-story with depictions of the original stories that captivated Canadian audiences. This adaptation includes fragmented scenes that illustrate the lives, triumphs, and struggles of rural Ontarians, while inserting modernized scenes throughout. The show begins with the “actors” exploring Ontario farms and the unique communities built within. The “actors” then seamlessly transition into the characters they would eventually portray to convey the original stories told in The Farm Show.  The Farm Show: Then & Now is truly a sensational piece of Canadian theatre. The show was a beautiful commentary on the community built within the Blyth area, and how agricultural contributions have shaped our nation. Each character was a delightful reminder of someone every Ontarian has met at church, hockey, or just passing through. The familiarity of each ...
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Mary's Musings

This Day in Sports

What? Audience Participation is Welcome? by Mary Alderson When I go to the theatre, I want the audience to be quiet. No talking, no loud whispering, no phones buzzing. The great musical theatre star Patti LuPone has actually halted Broadway shows when audience members were making noise, calling them out for their lack of theatre etiquette. But I have just heard that there will be a show upcoming at the Globus near Bobcaygeon, where audience participation is encouraged. Sure, the Globus is famous for their murder mysteries where the actors visit the theatre-goers at their dinner tables and chat with them, but this is different. For Father’s Day Weekend, the Globus is presenting something new. On stage will be the creators of a popular podcast called This Day in Sports, Sandy Jobin-Bevin, Matt Kippen, and Mike Shara. They will be recording their usual podcast, but it will be in front of a live audience and they will be looking for audience members to respond. So, just to be clear, they haven’t turned their podcast into a play; the theatre audience will be part of a real podcast which will be aired sometime in the future. The trio have been doing This Day in Sports for about a year and a half. Shara, a self-admitted sports trivia nerd, picks a date in history and researches obscure, interesting and preferably funny sports facts. Then the three discuss the various topics, and invite guests to join them. It can be any sport – maybe hockey or baseball, the ones we Canadians know lots about, or it could be another less popular sport, and they will do their best to educate the listeners. And here’s why this podcast is working: These guys are funny! And they know funny! Sandy Jobin-Bevans has a history with ...
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