Theatre in Rosseau this Summer 2010

In Rosseau - Tuesdays from July 6th to August 31st, 2010

Shows start at 8pm - call 705 732 6356 (9am to 5pm) for ticket reservations or tickets are available at the door but in limited quantities.

Check out the write up in the Parry Sound North Star on Wednesday, June 9th, 2010...

BY ANDREW WAGNER-CHAZALON Special to the North Star SEGUIN TWP. Two years ago, Cameron and Mitchell Hookey spent the summer living with their parents in Rosseau and working as dishwashers and busboys. This year, they've got a summer job that's a little more exciting. The brothers are still living with their parents, but they're spending the summer performing Shakespeare. Or at least a version of it.

The Hookey brothers  including eldest brother Garrett  have decided to create their own summer job by putting on a production of The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged).

The project was inspired, not so much by the dishwashing jobs, but by another play that Garrett saw in Rosseau last summer. “He came up with the idea that we should do a show,“ said Cameron. “We figured what a great opportunity to get out there, make some money, and do something we enjoy.“

All three brothers have a strong b a c kg r o u n d i n t h e at r e . Th ey attended a high school in Palm Springs, California, where arts participation was compulsory until Grade 11, and they have performed together many times.

Th e c h o i c e o f p l ay, i n fa c t , was influenced by a high school production. “My younger brother Cameron and I did a version of this play in high school,“ said Cameron. “We knew it was fun, and energetic, and would attract a large demographic from little kids up to the elderly.“

They also knew it was a great fit for a Muskoka summer audience.
“People want to be able to go out to something fun and relax for the evening,“ Cameron said. “It fits the casual, Muskoka lifestyle.“

The high school production featured a large cast, but the show was originally written for a cast of three. It was a huge hit for The Reduced Shakespeare Company in the 1990s, running for years on the West End and later on Broadway.

The play is a madcap attempt to perform all 37 plays and 154 sonnets in a two-act play.
Naturally there's a fair bit of condensing and re-imagining going on. This version of Romeo and Juliette takes less than 20 minutes; some of the other plays are dispatched in 20 words. This is a play that pokes fun at all aspects of Shakespeare, from the impenetrability of some lines to the gravity of scholars who study Shakespearean arcana. And yet there is also a love of Shakespeare at the root of the play, and even one or two moments of seriousness that allow the 400-year-old material to ring out.

Mitchell and Ca meron both live in Vancouver, where they are students at UBC (Cameron is studying marine biology, Mitchell is in theatre.)

In April, they were joined by Garrett (whose degree is in kinesiology) for two weeks of intense rehearsals. Part of the process included a few days of workshopping with their high school director. “He was the one who really got us interested in theatre, so it was great to do that,“ Cameron said. Last week, the show opened for preview nights in Port Carling and Rosseau. There is one more preview planned for June 12 in Port Carling, and in July the heavy slogging begins with three shows a week for two months.

Are there other performances in the works? Cameron says that will depend on the audiences and the venues. “None of us is adverse to doing it every day if we can keep filling the theatres.“

T h e C o m p l e t e Wo r k s o f W i l l i a m Shakespeare (Abridged) is playing in Port Carling every Wednesday and Thursday through July and August. On Tuesday nights the show will play at the community hall in Rosseau.

Tickets are $20 for adults, $10 for students 12-16, and $5 for those under 12, and are available at the door. 

To view the complete magazine, please click on the link below or copy and paste into a new browser window.