Thursday, April 29, 2010

" W.W.J.P.? "

- Judy Steers

This blog is going to be written throughout the summer by all the members of the cast and the production team.  Today, I'm musing on the learning curve of being a producer.

It's hard to believe that this crazy adventure started as a 'let's dream big' conversation between me and Jenny while making gingerbread cookies in December, 2008.  It began as a 'what would we do if we could do anything?'  That dream took shape over the following 12 months and here we are, a few days before beginning production month and a summer of...well, who knows.  Something wonderful, something life changing, something based in a good solid story - sounds a bit like Good News.


During the last 12 months my role in all this has been emerging as 'producer'.  There's lots of things that a producer does in a typical production - arranging food and transportation, sorting out rehearsal space, hiring, contracts, insurance, airline reservations, and did you know how HARD it is to find an 11 passenger van for two months??  But there are other parts of my 'producer' role unique to this production:  Exploring theological reflection with the cast.  Keeping the company supplied with homemade bread.   Praying together.  Singing together.  Learning how to 'con-spire', that is, to breathe together.  Living and working together to become not just co-workers and colleagues, but to be a prophetic community.  

One of the things that I thought was going to be hard was to NOT accompany the troupe on the tour.  I will see some of the performances, especially the premiere, but I'm not going across Canada (I have other  ministries to focus on, and two adolescents at home!).  Somehow I'm really ok with that.  I didn't expect to be - I thought after all this preparation and planning and dreaming, I would really lament not being able to go with them.  But I like the feeling of empowerment.  Sending forth.  Hearing the stories.  Waving the troupe goodbye as they leave and then watching them on this blog along with everyone else.  Empowering (or producing) is about providing the tools and the space to create and to become, then letting go and watching it unfold.  

Ascension-tide is well timed.  I wonder how Jesus felt at that moment of saying "I've given you what I can, you have all you need, go and do it.... and, tell me from time to time how you're getting on !"  I wonder if we really know how much he believed (believes) in us?  

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Westminster Woot

Thanks to the Westminster College Foundation for helping fund our production.  We just heard from them yesterday that our application was successful and they have made a sizeable grant to help us meet the costs of the tour.  

Here's what they do:
Westminster College Foundation provides grants to charitable organizations whose programs advance and assist with education, health and/or spiritual care, focusing on youth and/or seniors. Programs or projects that demonstrate creative new initiatives are favoured.

We'd like to think that we are a 'creative new initiative' and apparently, they think so too!  Thanks Westminster College Foundation!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Production Month starts in a week!

The Cast is chosen, the house is booked, the van is rented, the rehearsal space found and we are ready to begin our production month on May 4th in London, Ontario.

Introducing:  (L to R) Michael, Melissa, Karyn, Magdalena, John-Daniel and Carolyn! (and below, our directors Jenny and Peter)

We have started to make bookings at venues across Canada.  Hats off to St. James and the Refinery in Saskatoon who have not only been super helpful, but have suggested many things to us to help in our planning - we're new at this!

We welcome to the team Beth Baskin who is our tour coordinator and will be getting in touch with everyone who wants to book us to come and perform in their space.  If you want to talk to Beth about a performance, write to her at beth(at)

Tour locations so far:
Halifax - General Synod on June 8th
St. John's, NL  - Parish of the Ascension and St Mark's
Sault Ste. Marie
Thunder Bay
Winnipeg - St Stephen's Church
Saskatoon - St James and the Refinery

Want to add your town to our tour?  Write to Beth!   Watch the blog for a detailed tour schedule as it becomes available in the next few weeks.