‘An incredibly gifted young guy’: cast impressed with blind Stratford actor

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There’s a pretty unique actor about to take the stage as Tiny Tim in an upcoming modern-day adaptation of A Christmas Carol.

His name is Jonah Manley. The Stratford resident acts, sings and plays the piano.

And he’s blind.

“This is not something that happens all the time where, at 12 years old, you get to go on stage with these titans of Canadian theatre,” Blyth Festival artistic director Gil Garrat said Friday. “And to do it further with the challenges that he has, it’s a really amazing thing to witness.”

A Huron County Christmas Carol, a new take on the Charles Dickens classic by Garrat set in Blyth and the surrounding backcountry, stars Randy Hughson as Scrooge and Marek Norman as Jacob Marley.

“He’s an incredibly gifted young guy,” Norman said Friday during a break in rehearsals. “We’re thrilled with him.”

Manley has enjoyed learning from the well-known names in the room.

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