Monday, December 2, 2013

Young theatre students breathe new life into old Mummers Play

Make room, make room!
The mummers play, in one form or another, has been performed in communities throughout Newfoundland and Labrador for over a hundred years. In many forms, it is a hero combat play, where King George fights the forces of evil. And if someone gets cut down, have no fear, there is generally a Doctor nearby with a bag full of tricks, ready to revive the fallen character.

This theme of rebirth is particularly appropriate, given that seasoned performers Julia Halfyard and Tim Matson have been working with the MAX theatre students to breathe new life to the old plays. Their students will be presenting their version of the MAX Mummers Play this Sunday afternoon at The Rooms, in cooperation with the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador’s Intangible Cultural Heritage program.

“MAX Theatre is delighted to partner with the Mummer's Festival in reviving the Old Mummer's Play,” says Halfyard, Director of Theatre and Celebrant of Ugly Sticks. “We are proud to explore Newfoundland and Labrador's theatrical history through our MAX Theatre program."

Matson is a theatre instructor with the program, and the person who took on the task of editing and directing the play for the students.

“Participating in the Mummers Play not only gives our students a wonderful and unique performing opportunity,” he says, “but it also puts them in touch, in a first hand way, with the heritage and traditions of our province.”

You can come see King George, the Villainous Knight, the Doctor, Pickedy Wick, and all their friends as the MAX theatre students bring tradition alive at The Rooms, on Sunday, December 8th. The play will be performed at 2:30pm and again at 3:30pm.

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