PLAYING WITH FIRE, THE THEO FLEURY STORY Opens Centaur's 49 Season

Centaur Theatre opens its 49th season with Playing With Fire: The Theo Fleury Story, an epic, reckless, and inspirational tale based on the life of one of Canada's most outstanding hockey players, running October 3 to 29, 2017. Directed by Ron Jenkins and starring Shaun Smyth in the one-man virtuous performance of a lifetime, the multi-award-winning Playing With Fire premiered at Alberta Theatre Projects in 2012 and has subsequently earned rave reviews and held both theatre goers and hockey fans spellbound in Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Saskatoon, Hamilton, Regina, and now Montreal.

Audiences don't need to know a thing about hockey to love the exhilarating, heart-breaking, and triumphant true story of courageous Canadian hockey legend, Theoren Fleury. With the odds stacked against him, considered too short to play hockey, the pint-sized Métis kid with huge ambitions from Russel, Manitoba, overcame crushing obstacles to become an NHL All-Star, win the Stanley Cup, represent Canada twice at the Olympics Games and earn an Olympic Gold medal. A top scoring hit performed entirely on ice!

There will be a rousing rendition O Canada sung by a different Montrealer before every performance to get audiences in the mood for a hockey night in Montreal like no other. Most of the performers entered Centaur's So You Think You Can Sing O Canada contest. Who knows, some of the cameo performers might end up at the Bell Centre!

Playwright Kirstie McLellan Day is considered the most successful hockey book writer in the world with an astounding five national bestsellers, including the #1 best-selling Playing With Fire. Ron Jenkins, who makes his Montreal debut with this production, won the first annual Calgary Critter Award and a Betty Mitchell Award for his direction of this unique story on ice. Shaun Smyth, who also took home a Betty for his captivating portrayal of the hockey star, created his Theo Fleury with Mr. Jenkins from the beginning stages of the play's development.

Set and lighting designs are by David Fraser, whose work has been seen on theatre, dance and opera stages across Canada. His set design for Playing with Fire won the production's third Betty Mitchell Award. Winnipeg-based Dean Cowieson, who designs lighting and sets for theatre and dance companies in various Canadian cities, is the Lighting Director. Projection and video designs are by Corwin Ferguson, who is the Co-founder/Artistic Associate of Awkward Stage Productions and an urban game designer/operator with Vancouver Mysteries. Sound design and original compositions are by Mathew Skopyk, who is also the Sound Supervisor for the Department of Drama at the University of Alberta. Shaun Smyth's authentic costume is designed by Juli Elkiw and Melanie Rogowski, who has worked on this production for three seasons, stage manages with assistance from Elyse Quesnel.

NEW Saturday Salons: Get to know Centaur's new Artistic and Executive Director, Eda Holmes, in casual conversation about this production and all things Centaur Saturday October 7th and 14th, following the matinee performance.

Sunday Chat-up: October 8th at 12:30pm. A popular initiative that never fails to enrich the theatre going experience, presented in collaboration with the Montreal Gazette. Join Editor in Chief, Lucinda Chodan, in conversation with Playing With Fire playwright, Kirstie McLellan Day.

Both the Salons and the Chat-ups are held in the Ted T. Katz Family Trust Gallery and are open to the general public. Admission to these enlightening activities is FREE and complimentary refreshments are served, courtesy of Bonaparte Restaurant.
Talk Backs: Following the evening performance on Thursday October 12th and the matinée presentation on Sunday October 15th, audiences are invited to stay after the show for a lively Q&A with actor, Shaun Smyth.


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