Go Play Outdoors! An Interview with Summer Theatre Smiths Falls - theHumm August 2021
Go Play Outdoors! An Interview with Summer Theatre Smiths Falls - theHumm August 2021
It’s been about a year-and-a-half since we’ve been able to take in any live theatre, and although several local troupes have really stepped up their Zoom games, everyone seems pretty keen to get back to in-person productions. Fortunately for area acting aficionados, Summer Theatre Smiths Falls (STSF) is jumping back onto the boards — outdoors at the Heritage House Museum — with an intriguing and varied line-up. theHumm contacted STSF’s General Manager Roger Sands and Artistic Director Paul Griffin to find out more.
theHumm: How did Summer Theatre Smiths Falls come to be? Was it something you were contemplating pre-pandemic?
Roger and Paul: Summer Theatre Smiths Falls has actually been two years in the planning! Originally we were gearing up to open last summer and then the world shut down. Up until January of this year we thought we’d be able to mount our season with the same shows this year. However, there was so much uncertainty that we pivoted to create a season that would accommodate most twists and turns during Covid. It is very much a response to Covid’s toll. As we planned our season, we wanted to offer opportunities to a large cross-section of entertainers who haven’t been able to perform in a live environment for 16 months.
You’re kicking things off with two concurrent shows that our readers need to know about right away because they are running from July 29 to August 1. Can you tell us a bit about those two productions?
Certainly! Being Coloured/ful in a Black and White World is a one-woman show created and performed by Jacqui Du Toit about her life in South Africa before she moved to Canada. I originally saw it in the Undercurrents Festival in Ottawa and thought it would be a perfect fit for us. Jacqui is a magnetic performer and the play is incredibly engaging.
The second show is from Monica Bradford-Lea and Lauren Welchner, who make up the Ottawa-based theatre company Spicy Day. It’s called In Waking Life and it’s about two psychic sisters who fix all of your problems (and ignore their own). I originally saw it five years ago at the Ottawa Fringe and it most recently won Best of Fringe at the 2019 Toronto Fringe.
Your line-up gets even more varied with the events taking place on August 6, 7, and 20. Why did you decide to include stand-up comedy, live music and a drag show in your roster, and who will be performing on those dates?
We really saw this summer as an opportunity to see what audiences might be interested in seeing on a stage in Smiths Falls. Also, all areas of the performing arts were hit by the pandemic, so why not create a space for everyone? For the Comedy Night on August 6 we have two standups — Glenys Marshall and Christina Muehlberger — as well as The D.I.L.F Improv Duo made up of Sophie Hayes and Alice Howard.
On August 7 we are very excited to have renowned singer/songwriter Jim Bryson on our stage. I really believe this will sell out quickly as Jim is such a joy to see perform live. On August 20 we are delighted to have two drag shows, one at 7pm and the other at 9:30pm, and the performers are stellar! We will be welcoming Eve Anne Jellicle, Saltina Shaker, Aimee Yonce and Cyril Cinder, and we are excited to see what’s in store.
Last but not least, you’ve got a three-week run of Mindy Kaling and Brenda Withers’ play Matt and Ben opening on August 11. What can audiences expect from that production?
Matt and Ben will run from August 11 to August 29 with performances from Wednesday to Sunday each week. This play is a quick-paced comedy where Kaling and Withers use Matt Damon and Ben Affleck’s writing of Good Will Hunting as a device to explore male fragility and jealousy. And by having women play the characters of Damon and Affleck we get to see the whole world of celebrity in a new light. It’s hilarious, chaotic, subversive fun!
If things go well this summer, do you hope to return and/or expand the Summer Theatre program in the future?
We certainly hope so! We firmly believe this is just the start of great things, so please visit summertheatresmithsfalls.ca for all details!
Find more information online, and also check out PICNIC Smiths Falls smithsfalls.ca/experience for some terrific outdoor dining ideas!
Chris Lemaire — Powerful Art - theHumm August 2021
By Sally Hansen
Art… and Soul
It’s both refreshing and disconcerting when you encounter evidence that causes you to question your preconceptions (i.e., biases). So I was a bit surprised that a guy who describes himself as a redneck, worked as a heavy equipment operator, builds muscle cars and worked as a logger, creates artworks with the emotional clout and beauty that Chris Lemaire does.
Skies rule in his paintings. Lemaire credits the five years he spent in Newfoundland with his emergence as an accomplish......
To keep their dramatic brains busy during Covid, both Studio Theatre Perth and Kanata Theatre were recently offered opportunities to participate in 10-Minute Playwriting workshops facilitated by award-winning playwright Guy Newsham. The playwrights who took part learned how to quickly develop character, conflict and settings by getting creative and experimenting while cutting out extraneous details. Not an easy feat!
Under Guy’s tutelage, eight original plays came into being: four with Stud......
On Saturday, August 28, the Mississippi Madawaska Land Trust (MMLT) invites you and your school-aged children to The Festival of the Wild Child — Scavenger Hunts at High Lonesome Nature Reserve near Pakenham, Ontario.
This year’s themed scavenger hunts offer you the chance to share creative outdoor learning and play. It will be a day of woodland fun — a fantastic opportunity for families and “social bubbles” to enjoy the outdoors together while respecting O......
It’s been about a year-and-a-half since we’ve been able to take in any live theatre, and although several local troupes have really stepped up their Zoom games, everyone seems pretty keen to get back to in-person productions. Fortunately for area acting aficionados, Summer Theatre Smiths Falls (STSF) is jumping back onto the boards — outdoors at the Heritage House Museum — with an intriguing and varied line-up. theHumm contacted STSF’s General Manager Roger Sands and Artistic Direc......
Get Your Art Fix in the Valley! - theHumm August 2021
By Miss Cellaneous
Cornwall Comes to Burnstown
Bittersweet Gallery is gearing up to present the 49th Annual Show of Burnstown clay-relief sculptor Richard Gill.
The Coast of Cornwall in sculpted clay relief will open on August 21, outdoors on the grounds of the gallery. Richard and his wife Cheryl were captivated by Cornwall’s picturesque coast when they traveled there pre-Covid. A ceremonial county in the southwest peninsula of England, it is considered a Celtic nation and......
Magic Returns to Smiths Falls! OUTERBRIDGE – Clockwork Mysteries Shows Start on August 6 - theHumm August 2021
World-class magic show OUTERBRIDGE – Clockwork Mysteries is returning to The Station Theatre in Smiths Falls from August 6 through September 5, with shows on Fridays at 7:30pm, Saturdays at 2pm & 7:30pm, and Sundays at 2pm. Provincial guidelines will allow up to 70 people at each performance.
Critics across the globe have hailed Ted and Marion Outerbridge as “Champions of magic” (Bergedorfer Zeitung, Hamburg, Germany), described their performance as “A visual feast” (Jinhua Daily, Chin......
By Stephen Brathwaite
Back in 1974, Ian Paige and I met at Richard Gill’s summer pottery course in Burnstown. For me it was a graduation present to myself. I think for Ian it was an escape from working for Playtex in Arnprior and a desire for a career change. He became a potter! I had bought land near Pakenham the previous year and wanted to get to know the community. Ian’s response was: “If you want to know the people of Pakenham, cultivate ME!” I did and I did, and it worked. I felt welcomed and fell ......
Merrickville Festivalof the Arts - theHumm August 2021
The first Merrickville Festival of the Arts will take place on Saturday, August 28 and Sunday August 29, when residents and visitors are invited to celebrate summer by enjoying diverse art activities in various village locations. With its heritage stone and red-brick buildings, not to mention the Rideau Canal — a UNESCO World Heritage site — Merrickville provides a relaxed ambiance for visitors of all ages to discover.
More than 25 Merrickville Artists Guild (MAG) artists will display their pai......
Artist and Studio Tour in Perth - theHumm August 2021
Art Works! Perth is delighted to announce that their 3rd annual Artist and Studio Tour will take place in and around the beautiful town of Perth from August 27–29. Come out and meet many local talented artists and see their newest works, in the places in which they create! Make a day — or two — of it by treating yourself to delicious meals and snacks in excellent local cafés and restaurants. Look in on the many delightful small businesses inside the downtown core.
For a map of the tour, a directe......
Two creative business owners, who opened their doors in Perth just as the pandemic gripped the province, are collaborating in an exclusive one-night-only gallery event to mark the midsummer and to finally have their grand opening!
On Saturday, August 14, artist Katherine Muir Miller, in collaboration with Ranelle Larocque from Queen Bee Millinery, will roll out the red carpet for an exclusive event at the Katherine Muir Miller Gallery (22 Gore Street E.). Tick......
Always one of the most active live music venues in theHumm’s coverage area, The Cove in Westport is emerging from pandemic restrictions with a newly renovated patio and a full roster of outdoor music scheduled for August (and beyond!). We contacted manager Seamus Cowan to find out more about their plans.
theHumm: What kinds of renovations have you done to your patio in order to use it as a live music venue?
Semus Cowan: Due to Covid, we were able t......
By Colleen Gray
The billboard photo above is from the Artists Against Racism, Honour Project campaign. Six artists have work being featured on Pattison billboards across Canada for the next month. The artwork is designed to highlight the recovery of the bodies of children who have died in residential and day schools throughout the country.
This piece is titled “The Homecoming”. The story for it is as follows: A boy meets his Grandfather for the first time as the great homecoming begins. He lifts ......
Walkers and runners of all ages and abilities are invited to participate in this year’s virtual Run for AGH, sponsored by Canadian Tire Corp., Carleton Place, and taking place from Saturday, September 11 at 6am to Sunday, September 12 at 6pm. In order to ensure everyone’s safety, participants can complete their run or walk anytime during the weekend, choosing either one of the mapped out routes or to walk or run their own route.
New Gallery in Town! - theHumm August 2021
Some of the best art, the best music and greatest societal movements come during times of great struggle and strife. Is the middle of the pandemic the best time to open a new art gallery? The answer is most likely no, but Keith Busher seldom thinks “safe”. Keith saw the spike in the housing market, sudden lifestyle changes and a need amongst artists (with markets, comic cons and art shows on hold) as an opportunity to move to an art-rich community and open up a studio/gallery. His n......
By Chandler Swain
Seeing our beautiful oaks and apple trees regrowing a second set of leaves after the devastation of the LDD moth invasion earlier this summer, it seems like regrowth and regeneration are possible just when we need it. This theme is truly alive in many local farms providing us with wonderful local organic food. This month, Climate Network Lanark will focus on the Food Security aspect of addressing the Climate Crisis.
To get more insight on this topic I talked to Alberto Suarez-Esteban about Nature......
One of the best things about summer in Lanark County is the profusion of flowers that bloom — in gardens and in the wonderful wilderness. Almonte artist Linda Hamilton currently has a special celebration of local flora on display at the Mill of Kintail Museum, and the best part about her flowers is that they last forever! theHumm caught up with Linda to find out more.
theHumm: Your creations are so beautifully lifelike that it’s hard to be......
26th Annual Fibrefest - theHumm August 2021
It’s that time of the year again — when Almonte is normally crowded with fibre artists and fibre art enthusiasts. This year, however, due to the limits on social gatherings and with an eye towards public health recommendations, organizers have made the decision to cancel the in-person aspect of Fibrefest 2021, taking place from September 8–12. The market and shopping portion is postponed until September 2022, but there are new ways to participate in Fibrefest and support your favourite fibre......
Those Far Greener Pastures - theHumm August 2021
By Glenda Jones
My garden is no stranger to weeds. You might recall that a few years ago I suggested we hold Weedfest here. Alas, no one showed up, and our celebration fell flat. Weeding my own garden is a complete drag, but someone else’s always looks like it would be more fun to do.
Imagine, then, my delight in being able to work at a friend’s market garden, digging out weeds and planting stuff to my heart’s content. The earthy scent in the greenhouse is intoxicating as we watch seedlings maturing into prolific......
Weekends in Perth - theHumm August 2021
As pretty well everyone knows, small independent businesses have not had the easiest year-and-a-half of it. At the same time, tourism associations have had to balance public safety concerns with business interests. With the advent of Step 3 of the Roadmap to Reopen Ontario comes a loosening of restrictions and the opportunity to encourage folks to come on back — safely — and enjoy all that our charming small towns and rural areas have to offer. Perth Tourism is doing just that through their “W......
Food Sovereignty - theHumm August 2021
By David Hinks
Over 800 million people in our world regularly go to bed with an empty stomach. One in five children under five years of age in our world is stunted due to chronic malnutrition. Every day over 25,000 people in our world die from starvation. We pride ourselves in Canada as one of the most advanced nations on earth, yet according to Food Banks Canada over 1 million Canadians rely on Food Banks — over one-third of these Canadians are children.
What is the focus of our media? Lately, I have......
The Almonte Potters Guild (APG), now a not-for-profit co-operative, is an innovative member-run facility that has been an active part of the Mississippi Mills community for close to twenty years. It provides a friendly and creative environment for potters, both new and experienced, to develop their technical and artistic skills.
Classes have always been the lifeblood of this facility, allowing the APG to grow and thrive throughout the years. Unfortunately, like so many small businesses in Ontario......
Artist Showcase: Colleen Gray - theHumm August 2021
Heritage House Museum in Smiths Falls is excited to present a showcase of artist Colleen Gray’s work. Painting with ground mineral watercolours, Gray creates vivid and iridescent artworks that share Indigenous stories and experiences with the viewer. Rooted in Indigenous spirituality, learned and practiced over her lifetime and informed by her Cree Elders, Gray uses her art to teach about how to think Indigenously and how to understand the deep connection to the land that we all have,......
Open Houseat Camp Lau-Ren - theHumm August 2021
Big news! Camp Lau-Ren is planning an in-person Open House for September 4! No, this is not a dry, online virtual event with mute button or Wi-Fi connection issues. The only connection that matters is the connection between people and nature at the beautiful Camp Lau-Ren site.
Executive Directors Ron and Joanne Hartnett recently announced plans for the Open House to take place on Saturday, September 4 from 11am until 2pm. “Although we couldn’t open this summer, we are anxious to welcome back camp......
Middleville Museum has Re-opened! - theHumm August 2021
The fine folks at the Middleville and District Museum are so excited (and relieved) to announce that they are once again able to welcome you and all your friends and relatives. They are now open on Saturdays, Sundays and holiday Mondays from 12–4pm through to the Thanksgiving weekend, and also by appointment. All health regulations will be in place to keep visitors and museum volunteers safe, so please remember your mask and be prepared to provide contact information.
And, to welcome people back to the Museum, admission through August will be by donation! Everyone is invited to come a......
Breakfast with Soul — Write On! - theHumm August 2021
Are you a writer? A would-be writer? Not sure where to begin? Come to the next Breakfast with Soul Zoom meeting on August 15 at 9am and hear from this month’s special guest, Peter Occhiogrosso peterocchiogrosso.com . A member of the Authors Guild, Peter is the author of five nonfiction books, and is a coauthor, collaborator, or ghostwriter of twenty more, all for major publishers like Simon & Schuster, Penguin, Doubleday and Hay House. In recent years his books have focused primarily on spirituality, the nature of consciousn......
May 22 - Sep 5 Head Over Heels
Jul 12 - Sep 6 Eric Uren
Aug 2 - 31 Exhibit: Ghosts of the Highway
Aug 4 - 31 Jazz Night w/Spencer Evans Trio
Aug 11 The Tempest
Aug 12 - 14 Puppets Up! International Puppet Festival
Aug 12 Jeff Callery
Aug 13 - 14 Perth Lions Garlic Festival
Aug 13 Eric Uren on the Patio
Aug 15 Mellow Lily
- David Dunn — Doing What Comes Naturally
- Richard Gill’s Annual Show Burnstown Sculptor Sheds Light on 50-Year Career with Milestone Show
- Travel to Wonderland with Alice! Summer Fare at Smiths Falls Station Theatre
- Ghosts of the Highway New Exhibit at Perth’s Concave Gallery
- Calling All Hippies… To the Killaloe Craft and Community Fair!
- A Midsummer Night in Perth Landscapes Interpreted Through Art and Fashion
- MMLT Presents The Festival of the Wild Child Outdoor Family-Friendly Event is Better than Ever!
- Perth Garlic Festival
- 3 Galleries; 3 Shows
- Beautiful Art in Beautiful Westport!