Michael Healey's New Work 1979 to Begin This Weekend at Shaw Festival

Michael Healey's New Work 1979 to Begin This Weekend at Shaw Festival

After making a stop in Ottawa, Michael Healey's razor-sharp politically charged satire 1979 begins previews in Niagara-on-the-Lake on May 20. Several unplugged performances of the Eric Coates-directed production are scheduled at the Court House Theatre and Royal George Theatre before the production settles in the Jackie Maxwell Studio Theatre beginning October 1.

As one of Canada's most prolific playwrights, Healey's ability to skewer and elevate his subjects simultaneously results in a sympathetic and affectionate portrait of Prime Minister Joe Clark, one of Canada's least celebrated leaders.

Taking place over the course of 48 hours after Prime Minister Clark presented his first budget to the defeat of his minority government, 1979 examines Clark's costly miscalculation and its impact on the era's political machinations. 1979 features Sanjay Talwar as Prime Minister Joe Clark, alongside Marion Day and Kelly Wong as a variety of notable Canadian political players of the day.

The PMO's office in the Langevin Block and the sounds and fashions of the late 1970s are meticulously reconstructed by Steve Lucas (set, lighting and projections), Jennifer Goodman (costumes) and Keith Thomas (sound).

Michael Healey's 1979 is a Shaw Festival co-production with Great Canadian Theatre Company. The Jackie Maxwell Studio Theatre is sponsored by Paradigm Capital Inc.

Cast: (in alphabetical order)

Marion Day
Sanjay Talwar
Kelly Wong Actor A
Joe Clark
Actor B

Creative & Production:

Eric Coates, Director
Steve Lucas, Set, Lighting and Projection Designer
Jennifer Goodman, Costume Designer
Keith Thomas, Composer and Sound Designer
Michael Healey, Playwright
Allan Teichman, Stage Manager
Katherine Dermott, Assistant Stage Manager (to May 21)
Théa Pel, Assistant Stage Manager (from May 16)

The Shaw Festival's 2017 season is on stage April 5 through October 15. The playbill features Me and My Girl, Saint Joan, Dracula, 1837: The Farmers' Revolt, Androcles and the Lion, Wilde Tales, The Madness of George III, Dancing at Lughnasa, An Octoroon, Middletown, 1979 and Secret Theatre.

Direct bus service from Toronto to Niagara-on-the-Lake on the Shaw Express began April 5. Patrons can choose to come for one day or stay for the weekend with a round trip costing $25. A ticket to a 2017 Shaw Festival performance is required to access this service.

Tickets for the 2017 Festival season and Shaw Express are available through the Box Office at 1-800-511-SHAW and online at www.shawfest.com.

The Shaw Festival celebrates the life and spirit of Bernard Shaw by creating theatre that is as entertaining and provocative as Shaw himself. For more information, visit www.shawfest.com.

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