# 28 - PlayME - The Fall of Andrew Allen

August 4, 2016

The Fall of Andrew Allen - by Eric Koch
Featuring Barbara Budd

This is a work of fiction about the real Andrew Allen, former head of radio drama during the golden age of radio from 1943 to 1955. He oversaw the work of some of the finest talents of the day - writers and actors such as Lister Sinclair, Mavor Moore, W.O. Mitchell, Jane Mallett, John Drainie, Barry Morse, Christopher Plummer, James Doohan, and many others.


Eric Koch - Writer

 

Eric Koch who was born in Frankfurt in 1919, lives in Toronto. His grandfather was a court jeweler and his father was an officer in the German army in WWI. Eric was deported to Canada, interned as an enemy alien during WWII. On his release, he remained in Canada, making his career at the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. He also is the author of 14 works of fiction and five works of non-fiction.


Barbara Budd - Actor


As Co Host of AS It Happens for 17 years,  Barbara Budd's  voice became familiar to listeners around the world, hearing her on CBC Radio, on  over 90 stations of American Public Radio,and  on Sirius Satellite.  Before she took her place behind the mic, she was an accomplished actor appearing  in major theatres across Canada.  For  five seasons at the Stratford Festival  she played leading roles  in a total of 23 productions in the company of Dame Maggie Smith, Brian Bedford, Peter Ustinov , William Hutt and Jessica Tandy.


She has appeared numerous times  as host and narrator  with the major symphony orchestras of Canada. (Toronto, Montreal, National Arts Centre Orchestra, Vancouver, Winnipeg, London, Kitchener-Waterloo, and The Niagara Symphony.  And is featured on 4 award-winning cd's on the Classical Kids Label.


For 8 years at Roy Thomson Hall -and  then at  Harbourfront Centre she hosted  monthly family concerts for Jeunesse Musicale.  She has appeared with Ben Heppner, Sylvia Tyson, innovative percussionist Bev Johnston and two- time Tony Award Winner Len Cariou as part of Stratford Summer Music.


At the 2015 Pan Am Games in Toronto Barbara  hosted huge open-air Cultural events on the Nathan Phillips Square and The Distillery District stages and she  is a frequent host and MC  of Corporate Events,  Fundraisers, and conferences. (e.g. Canadian Liver Foundation,International Conference of  Opera Producers,  American Psychologists Association, Pollution Probe,  LEAF, TTC, York University, Water For Africa @Massey Hall.

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#27 - PlayME - A Classified Heart

July 28, 2016

A CLASSIFIED HEART

By Sophie Holdstock, featuring Lisa Ryder-Cohen

There is bourbon and beers and bar stools. There is a Sombrero, and also a flute. There is longing and lust and loneliness. And fearlessness. And perhaps naughtiness. We do not know where to start. Perhaps here in the classified heart.

Sophie Holdstock - Writer

Sophie Holdstock is an actor and writer living in Toronto. She originally hails from the lush Vancouver Island and came to Toronto after graduating from The National Theatre School of Canada. She has been seen on stages on both coasts, and perhaps on TV if you haven't blinked too quickly. She does not call herself a writer, although she "writes" - which her friend pointed out is the definition of a writer. She wrote a piece once that made her mum laugh - that was a good piece indeed.

Lisa Ryder-Cohen - Actor

Lisa Ryder Cohen is an actor and writer based in Toronto. Acting credits for theatre include Zadie's Shoes (Factory Theatre), Possible Worlds (Theatre Passe Muraille) and the continuing world tour of Helen Lawrence (Canadian Stage). Television credits include five seasons as a lead on Gene Roddenberry's Andromeda and guest appearances on Killjoys (Syfy), and Remedy (Global). A public reading of Lisa's new play, A Blow in the Face, will be held at the Tarragon Theatre in August 2016.

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#26 - PlayME - Betting On Death

July 13, 2016

Betting on Death
By Vera Constantineau
Featuring Tony Nappo

Fonso Morelli likes to bet on horses but always loses. He is in line for an inheritance but his Zia Gena refuses to die. 

Vera Constantineau is an Internationally published short story writer and poet. Her work appears in online journals as well as print journals and athologies. She is a member of the Sudbury Writers' Guild, The Manitoulin Writers' Circle and the Writers' Community of Durham Region. In May 2016 Vera won Second Place in the Elora Writer's Festival Contest and earned an Honorable Mention in the Skugog Literary Contest. 

Tony Nappo's stage work includes: Tarragon’s Mustard, The Summoned,The Golden Dragon,TheRealWorld?; Mirvish’s God of Carnage; Soulpepper’s Twelve Angry Men; Peggy Pickit Sees the Face of God; Canadian Stage The Seagull

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#25 - PlayME - House

July 6, 2016

House

By Chris Nash
Featuring Barbara Budd

What if the walls could speak? House tells the story of a home and the people who have lived there.

Chris Nash is a retired psychologist, short fiction writer and poet from Sudbury Ontario. She published her novel “Temperance Lloyd: Hanged for Witchcraft in 1682", on the 330th anniversary of that execution. Her novel, “Priest Hole” awaits publication. She is married to Canadian poet, Roger Nash.

As Co Host of AS It Happens for 17 years,  Barbara Budd’s  voice became familiar to listeners around the world, hearing her on CBC Radio, on  over 90 stations of American Public Radio,and  on Sirius Satellite.  Before she took her place behind the mic, she was an accomplished actor appearing  in major theatres across Canada.  For  five seasons at the Stratford Festival  she played leading roles  in a total of 23 productions in the company of Dame Maggie Smith, Brian Bedford, Peter Ustinov , William Hutt and Jessica Tandy.

She has appeared numerous times  as host and narrator  with the major symphony orchestras of Canada. (Toronto, Montreal, National Arts Centre Orchestra, Vancouver, Winnipeg, London, Kitchener-Waterloo, and The Niagara Symphony.  And is featured on 4 award winning cd’s on the Classical Kids Label.

For 8 years at Roy Thomson Hall –and  then at  Harbourfront Centre she hosted  monthly family concerts for Jeunesse Musicale.  She has appeared with Ben Heppner, Sylvia Tyson, innovative percussionist Bev Johnston and two- time Tony Award Winner Len Cariou as part of Stratford Summer Music.

At the 2015 Pan Am Games in Toronto Barbara  hosted huge open-air Cultural events on the Nathan Phillips Square and The Distillery District stages and she  is a frequent host and MC  of Corporate Events,  Fundraisers, and conferences. (e.g. Canadian Liver Foundation, International Conference of  Opera Producers,  American Psychologists Association, Pollution Probe,  LEAF, TTC, York University, Water For Africa @Massey Hall )

For 9 seasons she has been the narrator of the popular Mighty Ships series aired around the world on Discovery, and the Smithsonian channels.

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#24 - PlayME - Benji Hayword

June 29, 2016

Benji Hayward
By Jennfier McKinley
Featuring Raoul Bhaneja


A father’s obsession with the tragic death of a Toronto teenager leads to his daughter’s public humiliation. Family roles blur when he takes LSD at Ontario Place.  
 
--
Jennifer McKinley is a writer, producer and performer from Toronto. Select productions include The Underpants, New Ideas Festival (Alumnae Theatre); Jacqueries, Part 1 (Jacob Niedzwiecki/SummerWorks), recipient of the Buddies In Bad Times Award For Risk And Innovation. Jennifer has performed clown, sketch and stand-up comedy and she has presented stories at storytelling nights and competitive literary readings. Jennifer performed excerpts from her upcoming solo show,Operation SUNshine, at CRAPSHOOT! (Theatre Passe Muraille) and the 2016 Feminist Art Conference Residency (Artscape Gibraltar Point). 

Raoul Bhaneja- A graduate of The National Theatre School, since moving to Toronto twenty years ago, Raoul has performed extensively in television, film and theatre. Last year he was nominated for a Dora Award for his musical Life, Death and The Blues and most recently appeared on stage (and co produced) the box office breaking play Disgraced as part of the Off Mirvish season.
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#23 - PlayME - The Timekeeper

June 22, 2016

The Timekeeper

By Roy Lee Rabideau
Featuring Eric Peterson

The Timekeeper is a dark, quirky comedy about a man who fears he is running about of time.

Roy L. Rabideau holds degrees in Visual Arts and Education from the University of Windsor. He is a multidisciplinary artist who has exhibited both here at home and abroad. He is the author of two novels, "The Long Short Summer" and his soon to be published second novel, "The Timekeeper, a Dale Evans mystery". You can find him on his Facebook page, "We'll Fly Press".


Eric Peterson has been an actor in this country for the last forty-five years. Noted for co-creating and originating Billy Bishop Goes To War on stage, as well for television and feature film, his stage career includes hundreds of plays on most major stages across Canada, as well Broadway, London’s West End, the Edinburgh Festival and the Melbourne International Theatre Festive.  

His work in Canadian film and television includes such credits as Peter Moss’s mini-series Best Laid Plans, Jerry Ciccoritti’sTrudeau, Deepa Mehta’s Earth, guest star appearances on series such as What Would Sal Do, Slings and Arrows, DaVinci’s Inquest, Murdock Mysteries, Dan For Mayor, The Republic of Doyle, and Cracked, as well as series regular roles: Leon Rabinovich in Street Legal, Judge Malone on This Is Wonderland and Oscar Leroy on the long running, Corner Gas.

He was the recipient of the Gordon Pinsent Award of Excellence in 2009 for his theatre work, as well as, the Earle Grey Award, a lifetime achievement award for his film and television endeavors. He holds an honorary doctorate from the University of Saskatchewan, is a recipient of the Governor General’s Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award (Theatre) and a member of the Order of Canada.

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#22 - PlayME - Bonus Interview with Norman Yeung

June 15, 2016

Bonus Episode: Interview with Norman Yeung

Chris talks with the playwright of Theory, Norman Yeung about a broad range of topics including diversity and race in theatre, liberalism, censorship and the fine line between the legal and illegal in graffiti art.

Norman Yeung - Playwright


Norman works in theatre, film, and visual arts.

His play “Theory” won First Place in the Herman Voaden National Playwriting Competition in 2015. “Deirdre Dear” premiered at the Neil LaBute New Theater Festival in St. Louis. "Pu-Erh" premiered at Theatre Passe Muraille in Toronto and was nominated for four Dora Mavor Moore Awards, including Outstanding New Play. "Pu-Erh" was a Herman Voaden finalist in 2009. He was a member of Canadian Stage's BASH! artist development program, fu-GEN's Kitchen Playwrights Unit, and Tapestry New Opera’s Composer-Librettist Laboratory. He is featured in the book "Voices Rising: Asian Canadian Cultural Activism" by Xiaoping Li.

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#21 - PlayME - Theory - Episode 3

June 9, 2016

#21 - PlayME - Theory - Episode 3


“You’re so blinded by your tolerance that you don’t see your offence.”


Isabelle is a young, liberal professor of film theory. She creates an Internet discussion board for her class as a learning tool and encourages them to speak freely. A mysterious student posts questionably offensive comments and videos, testing Isabelle’s open-mindedness. When the student starts sending her racially and sexually charged emails and videos - she tries to shrug it off. But when someone leaves an open knife at her front door, she reports the student to the university. The harassment intensifies and becomes more violent until Isabelle stops goes to class to escape her tormentor. She soon realizes there is nowhere to hide.

Theory was written was Norman Yeung. It features Sascha Cole, Ash Knight, Starr Domingue, Qasim Khan, Kyle Orzech, Darrel Gamotin, Audrey Dwyer. The original production was directed by Joanne Williams, and the workshop production was directed by Esther Jun.

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#20 - PlayME - Theory - Episode 2

June 2, 2016

"Wouldn't want to piss off the wrong student nowadays. They have a tendency to surprise."



When Isabelle, a young liberal professor of film theory sets up an Internet discussion board for her class, a mysterious student starts posting derogatory material on the board. Students demand she intervene, but it isn't until she starts receiving racially and sexually charged emails that she reluctantly decides to block the student from the board. She reports the student's offense to her department head who questions if she is the one being offensive. He tells her if she keeps pushing her liberal agenda, eventually someone is going to push back.


 
Theory was written was Norman Yeung. It features Sascha Cole, Ash Knight, Starr Domingue, Qasim Khan, Kyle Orzech, Darrel Gamotin, Audrey Dwyer. The original production was directed by Joanne Williams and the workshop production was directed by Esther Jun.



Norman Yeung - Playwright

Norman works in theatre, film, and visual arts.


His play “Theory” won First Place in the Herman Voaden National Playwriting Competition in 2015. “Deirdre Dear” premiered at the Neil LaBute New Theater Festival in St. Louis. "Pu-Erh" premiered at Theatre Passe Muraille in Toronto and was nominated for four Dora Mavor Moore Awards, including Outstanding New Play. "Pu-Erh" was a Herman Voaden finalist in 2009. He was a member of Canadian Stage's BASH! artist development program, fu-GEN's Kitchen Playwrights Unit, and Tapestry New Opera’s Composer-Librettist Laboratory. He is featured in the book "Voices Rising: Asian Canadian Cultural Activism" by Xiaoping Li.


As an actor, Norman's film and television credits include a supporting role in "Resident Evil: Afterlife" (Sony/Screen Gems), a series regular role in "Todd and the Book of Pure Evil" (SPACE/CTV), and roles in “Rookie Blue” (ABC/Global), “Murdoch Mysteries” (CBC), and “King” (Showcase). He recently performed in the Canadian Premiere of “Chimerica” at Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre and Canadian Stage.
He holds a BFA in Acting/Theatre from the University of British Columbia and a BFA (Honours) in Film from Ryerson University. Norman grew up in East Vancouver and lives in Toronto and Los Angeles.

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#19 - PlayME - Theory - Episode 1

May 25, 2016

Episode 1 of Theory - By Norman Yeung

 

How can you remain progressive when progress becomes dangerous?

 

Isabelle is a young, liberal professor of film theory. She creates an Internet discussion board for her class as a learning tool and encourages them to speak freely. A mysterious student posts questionably offensive comments and videos, testing Isabelle’s open-mindedness. Isabelle abides by her principles and refuses to censor. Amid backlash from her students and urging from her wife, Isabelle must decide on whether to take action against the online offender. She becomes obsessed with this game of cat-and-mouse where she and her tormentor blur the lines between predator and prey. The harassment becomes increasingly vicious and bizarre, attacking Isabelle’s personal and professional life, dismantling her ideal of liberalism.

 

Theory features Sascha Cole, Ash Knight, Starr Domingue, Qasim Khan, Kyle Orzech, Darrel Gamotin, Audrey Dwyer. The original production was directed by Joanne Williams and the workshop production was directed by Esther Jun.

 

Playwright's Notes:


The political spectrum of Left versus Right is not linear but circular. The poles meet. Both the extreme Left and extreme Right have produced similar dictators and agony. The two sensibilities are separated by the thinnest membrane – any one person is capable of committing acts that are “liberal” and “conservative”. This membrane is the irony, the hypocrisy. One nation that espouses liberty to live however we want – freedom – can invade another nation because they live their lives differently. People who censor themselves for the sake of political correctness and fairness in public can joke about skin colour among friends in private. Yet they are not racist. My society considers itself progressive in every manner, from how we conduct our lives to how we communicate through technology, yet we can be unaware of how dangerous our idea of progress can be. If we force our progressiveness upon those who do not want it, they will fight back. I have always been bothered by people forcing their thought upon me. I have been guilty of doing the same. Liberal irony. I believe myself to be as progressively minded as one can get; fellow liberal people ought to be aware of the agony we can inflict. We have been warned.

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