Don't miss this week's performance of the play 'To Shut the Mouths of Lions' at The Capitol Theatre in Port Hope, on Saturday, October 1.
This is one of two nights this piece is being re-mounted with the original cast (the other being Harbourfront Theatre in Toronto), and proceeds from this production will benefit Green Wood Coalition. Beyond being a great piece of theatre (funny, poignant, provocative) by talented Northumberland playwright Dave Clark, the underlying themes of disconnection and effects of trauma offer a different lens for viewing our community and possibly our relationships.
The brilliant cast of Lions includes Neil Torrie and Derek Cunningham (pictured here in a scene from the play), Sarah Foord, Jeff Caine, Nick Storm and Jan Crane.
We recently had the opportunity to have a conversation with the play's writer and director, Dave Clark:
To Shut the Mouths of Lions is a broad swath of real life with all of its hilarity and painful moments. Did you feel personally vulnerable in the writing of the play?
"I am more open on the page than I am anywhere else in life. I find it easy to open up and tell truth on the page. My ego disappears when I write and all I want to do is tell truths. This play is not about me or my family or even really about anything I know. I just followed the characters around and they provided the story."
It must have been difficult to cast some of the roles, especially the central character of William McBride.
"I was very happy to get Neil Torrie because he has such a natural delivery on stage and he’s also likeable so that when he takes on an unlikeable character like McBride, audiences somehow don’t mind when he says cruel things and espouses despicable attitudes and beliefs."
What’s the impact you’re hoping for with this play?
"I am thrilled that my writing can be seen as something that might work to heal people who have been scarred by past events they had little or no control over. When we share communally in art that mirrors life, people feel closer to one another and that to me is the reason for writing, or acting."
You're mounting this as a fundraiser for Green Wood Coalition—what’s the connection there?
"I think in many cases the play’s action made people feel exposed about past events in their own lives – which makes it such a good fit for Green Wood. The Green Wood community deserves to be supported because the work they all do and the difference you make in our town is often under-appreciated."