By Eric Bourque
As they were heading into the final seven days before the debut of Évangeline – to be presented eight times in the Father Maurice LeBlanc theatre in Tusket, starting Tuesday, July 22 – a spokesperson for the show said everyone was excited about the production.
Acknowledging that the days leading up to the first of those eight performances promised to be “pretty intense,” Joanne Surette said cast members were “very enthused, can’t wait for opening night.”
A presentation of the Conseil des arts de Par-en-Bas, the show is a musical by Paul Taranto and Jamie Wax, based on Longfellow’s epic poem.
Part of a cast consisting of close to 40 people, Surette describes the production as a multifaceted one that features various art forms.
Those who come out to see the show, she said, “can look forward to an experience of the poem written by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow represented in music, in acting and in (other) arts – in painting, in dancing.”
The production is a bilingual one but mostly English, she said, featuring lots of music but dialogue too.
The cast includes three different sets of actors representing different times in the lives of Évangeline and Gabriel – as children, as teenagers and as adults.
The cast itself covers a wide spectrum of ages, from young children to senior citizens.
Performance dates are July 22, 23, 24, 26, 29, 30, 31 and Aug. 3 in the Father Maurice LeBlanc theatre, part of the community centre at the Par-en-Bas school. Showtime for all but the last of them is 7:30 p.m. The Aug. 3 presentation is a Sunday matinee scheduled for 2 p.m.
Organizers hope the production will appeal to both locals and visitors, Surette said.
The production has been a community effort, she said, in terms of how people have come together to help out in one way or another, and not just in the Par-en-Bas (or Municipality of Argyle) region.
The theatre was a busy place on Tuesday, July 15, as cast and crew were getting ready for a rehearsal, with opening night precisely a week away, but Surette said things were falling into place.
“We’ll be ready,” she said.