REVIEW: 1837: The Farmers’ Revolt gets special homecoming from Blyth Festival

Heather Boa Blog

“Blyth Festival Artistic Director Gil Garratt brings the play 1837: The Farmers’ Revolt home to the theatre where it was born.  Yet this is the first time it’s actually been performed on this stage for an audience. What a special homecoming,” says reviewer Mary Alderson in her online publication, Entertain This Thought.

“1837: The Farmers’ Revolt was developed in Blyth 45 years ago. Rick Salutin and a collective of actors from Theatre Passe Muraille descended on Huron County in 1973 to continue the good work they had done in 1972 with The Farm Show.  They used the Blyth Community Hall (now the theatre) while they were acting out the story of the farmers’ revolt, which was later written down.  The Community Hall was in such a state of disrepair, that the actors were asked to sign waivers saying they wouldn’t sue if the roof caved in on them.  When the troupe finally had 1837: The Farmers’ Revolt put together it was shown in other venues throughout the area and then across the province.  Last year, it was part of the Shaw Festival’s repertoire.  So it is only fitting that it finally comes home to Blyth again,” she said.

Read her full review here.

 

Photo:

William Lyon Mackenzie (Matthew Gin), with help from his assistants Marcia Johnson (left) and Parmida Vand uses his magical deck of cards to explain the relationships in the Family Compact, in 1837: The Farmers’ Revolt at the Blyth Festival. Directed by Gil Garratt. Creative team: Beth Kates, set, projection and lighting designer; Gemma James Smith, costume designer; and Deanna H. Choi, sound designer and music composer. Production stage management: Heather Thompson and Katerina Sokyrko. It runs until Sept. 15. Photo credit: Terry Manzo