Volume 9 Week 3

Tuesday, Dec. 309


 

Updated March 18

Orléans Ward
Bob Monette

Updated June 1


This week:
Rob Jellett


Orléans Ward
Bob Monette

 

 

 



(Posted 7:30 p.m., June 3)

Orleans Older Players tackle tale of Robin Hood
By Fred Sherwin
Orléans Online

Prince John, played by Carolle Séguin, confers with the Sheriff of Nottingham, played by Sharon Gravelle, in the Orleans Older Players production of A Robin Hood Adventure on this week at the Orléans Theatre. Fred Sherwin/Photo


Members of the Orleans Older Players proved they are as adept at improv as they are at comedy Thursday night when a power outage forced them to stage their opening night performance of A Robin Hood Adventure on the sidewalk in front of the Orleans Theatre.

Members of the audience were just filing into the building when the power went down and the news was sent out that the play would be performed en plein aire.

Thankfully, the weather was conducive to an outdoor performance, although the passing traffic made following the dialogue a tad difficult at times.

Despite the ambient noise and lack of sound cues, the actors, several of whom are first-timers, did a marvellous job. In fact, if you didn't know before hand, you'd be hard pressed to guess which of the actors among the group were the newbies and which were the seasoned thespians.

De La Salle grad Dan Dicaire is wonderful as Robin Hood and Pierre Larocque, who returned to OOPS after playing the Emperor in The Little Bird last year, is hysterical as Queen Eleanor.

Other cast members include Lennis Poupore as Little John, Sheila Watts as Will Scarlet, Terry-Lynne Dodd as Maid Marion, Tina Chan as Friar Tuck, Heather Jamieson as Adam of the Rock, Carolle Séguin as Prince John, Sharon Gravelle as the Sheriff of Nottingham and Vintage Stock Theatre founder Susan Flemming as Dame Agnes of the Prune.

The chorus is made up of several of the actors' children including Sheila's son Gordon, Heather's daughter Louisa, Lennis' daughters Keri and Kaitlyn Poupore, Tina's daughters Samantha and Sabrina, Emily Ouelette and Jessice Laframbroise.

The Orleans Older Players is an offshoot of the Orleans Young Players Theatre School, which offers parents of students and other budding thespians of the mature variety a chance to learn some of the tricks of the trade and hone their theatrical skills. The class runs from September to June.

During the weekly sessions, class members learn everything from character develop.m.ent and proper allocution to set design and costume making.

While several members of this year's class were returnees from the inaugural OOPS class formed in 2003, there were several newbies in the group including Chan, who has two daughters in OYP and Séguin who hadn't acted since she graduated from high school.

Séguin joined OOPS to satisfy some sort of mid-life crisis.

"I thought what was the scariest thing I could do and I came up with acting again," said Séguin whose day job is the volunteer coordinator at the Orléans-Cumberland Resource Centre.

As it turns out, Séguin was first asked to join the class by Jamieson who is OYP's office administrator. At first she declined, but was then approached by friend and co-worker Sharon Gravelle. The two made a pact to join the class together and the rest is history.

Although she went into the exercise with a slight bit of trepidation, she came out of it thankful she joined and grateful for an audience willing to forgive the odd flaw or misread line.

"It was very scary, but very invigorating, especially when you see all those sympathetic faces in the audience encouraging you," said Séguin.

Chan joined OOPS to get a better understanding of what her daughters were learning at OYP and to overcome her fear of public speaking.

"I always wanted to do what they do, but was never able to," said Chan.

And how did she feel about the experience after the first performance... "It was the best thing I've ever done. It's really brought me out of my shell. I can hardly wait to do it again next year."

(This story was made possible thanks to the generous support of our local business partners.)

 

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Orléans Ward
Bob Monette



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