Beyond the Sea

Where and How to Find Your Soulmate

Reviewed by Mary Alderson

Billed as a romantic comedy, Beyond the Sea seems to be more about grief. The Festival Players of Prince Edward County are presenting this new play by Kristen DaSilva on the outdoor pavilion stage at the Eddie Hotel and Farm. I say it’s about grief, but I laughed out loud throughout the show.

Love and loss are woven skillfully together in this endearing play. Gwen (Jane Spence) and Theo (Jeffrey Wetsch) are thrown together for an afternoon which turns out to be actually life changing. Gwen is under-employed, selling tickets on the dock for a “Ghost Boat Cruise”, for which she supplies some sound effects for the ghost story. Theo arrives to meet a blind date to take her on the cruise, but she’s late and he misses the boarding. Gwen and Theo start up a conversation, with the two trading barbs and clever comments. Eventually we learn Gwen is mourning her late husband’s death. Despite what she says, we learn that she hasn’t handled the grief very well. Theo is also grieving his divorce and the loss of what was a promising relationship. They share some rather personal stories, based on the assumption they will never see each other again. The play is both heart-wrenching and heartwarming.

A husband and wife couple in real life, Jane Spence and Jeffrey Wetsch bring the two engaging characters to life. I wonder if I would have been so enamoured with them, if this couple didn’t have such powerful chemistry. Both Spence and Wetsch have impressive bios. Spence has been in theatres across Ontario, performing in shows such as Mirvish’s Calendar Girls and in various Shakespearean plays at the Stratford Festival and elsewhere. Similarly, Wetsch has performed across Ontario, including Mirvish’s Dirty Dancing and six seasons at Stratford Festival. Their skills as both dramatic and comedic actors are quite evident as they appeal to the audiences’ emotions.

The outdoor pavilion stage has been well used again this summer, after being constructed as a Covid necessity last year. This play, set on a dock by a lake in a summer tourist town, is just right for the outdoor setting in Prince Edward County. The play contains Ontario references which fit perfectly.

Beyond the Sea is well written, filled with clever dialogue and recognizable personalities. The two actors bring those characters to life, providing a full range of emotions. We laughed, we cried, but more importantly we learned about relationships, new and old. This sweet story presented by these brilliant actors who draw you into their emotional journey, is a must-see. It will charm you, no matter your age or where you are when it comes to relationships.

Beyond the Sea continues with the Festival Players of Prince Edward County at The Eddie Hotel & Farm, Bloomfield until September 4. For tickets, visit

Photo: Jeffrey Wetsch as Theo, Jane Spence as Gwen. Photo by Sarah Kirby.

Beyond the Sea
By Kristen DaSilva
Directed by Derek Ritschel
Performed by Jane Spence and Jeffrey Wetsch
Produced by Festival Players of Prince Edward County
Eddie Hotel & Farm, Bloomfield
August 24 to September 4, 2022
Reviewed by Mary Alderson


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