Lighthouse Festival set to Welcome Patrons Back Next Summer with Seminal 2023 Playbill 

2023 Season Poster
The 2023 Season Poster

Tickets are on sale now for the new season of summer comedies.  Written by Canadians, about Canadians, and for Canadians. 

PORT DOVER & PORT COLBORNE, ON (Nov24,2022) – During a visit to Lighthouse Festival in the summer of 2022, veteran theatre critic Gary Smith described Lighthouse as, “the home of Canadian theatre comedies.” A badge the Festival wears proudly.

“To all comedy and theatre lovers across Ontario and beyond, we can’t wait to welcome you back home,” shares Lighthouse Festival Artistic Director Derek Ritschel. “Lighthouse Festival has put together an exhilarating and diverse lineup of comedies for the summer of 2023. Written by Canadians, about Canadians, and for Canadians.”

Tickets are now on sale for a new season of laughter that truly sets itself apart from other summer theatre festivals for one simple fact: most of the shows, you can’t see anywhere else. As part of their Play Development Program, Lighthouse Festival has commissioned and developed three world premieres for this season that Lighthouse patrons will be able to see before other theatres even have an opportunity to stage them. The opportunity to bring new works to the stage is a point of pride for Ritschel, who shares, “part of our commitment to supporting Canadian theatre is to give Canadians a chance to share their stories and ideas. A lot of work goes into writing a good comedy with heart. It doesn’t matter if it’s a seasoned writer or an aspiring playwright with an interesting idea; we’re here to use our resources and virtuosity in theatre to take their creativity from the page to stage.”

The Season:

Come Down From Up River by Norm Foster (May 17 – June 18)

Norm Foster’s signature writing brings us a hilarious yet poignant tale of a woodsman from Northern New Brunswick trying to reconnect with his estranged niece and her wife in the big city.

On The Air by Ephraim Ellis (June 7 – June 28):

World Premiere – Lighthouse favourite Jane Spence directs this world premiere that sees a rag- tag group of amateur radio broadcasters use diversity to their strength and embrace chaos to save their small-town radio station on Lake Kashagakaganee.

Sakura: The Last Cherry Blossom Festival by Terry Watada (June 28th – July 30th)

World Premiere – A charming and humorous true story of Japanese Immigrant Kobi Kobayashi, who settles in Port Dover in the 1930s and inspires us all to be good members of our community. This uplifting story is not one to be missed.

For Immediate Release

Where YouAre by Kristen Da Silva (July 19 – August 20)

Lighthouse staple Kristen Da Silva brings us a story of quiet retirement turned hectic family reunion in this story filled with family, humour, and heart.

A Pack Of Thieves by Norm Foster (August 16th – September 17th)

World Premiere –This is an unrelenting comedy, get ready for some big laughs. Don’t miss out on being the first to see a new Norm Foster production.

The season wraps up in September with a concert in the form of Opry Gold with The Wayward Wind Band. This musical blockbuster, created by Leisa Way, showcases former and current kings and queens of country music while celebrating the history of Nashville’s iconic Grand Ol’ Opry.

Tickets for performances start at $42 with savings available in the form of a Lighthouse Festival subscription, allowing patrons to see each production this season with up to 15% in discounts. Full ticket information can be found at

Destination For Laughter:

Lighthouse Festival is a charitable organization that has been a top tourist destination in Norfolk County for almost half a century, regularly welcoming over 60,000 patrons from all over Ontario through their doors each summer. Now, with a location in Port Colborne at the Roselawn Theatre, Lighthouse laughter spreads along the shores of Lake Erie boosting local tourism, community spirit, and Canadian arts in two beautiful lakeside towns. Our theatres operate on a central hospitality, accessibility, and affordability policy for all. With over 50% of patrons travelling 40km or more to get to their theatres, theatregoers are encouraged to utilize the “Visit” section at to explore the amazing restaurants, shops and more in our wonderful communities.

To arrange an interview with Artistic Director Derek Ritschel, or for more information please contact: Ryan Daly, Marketing & Communications Officer. | 226-922-7905