Port Dover’s Lighthouse Festival Theatre’s production of Where You Are opens with sisters Suzanne and Glenda sitting on their front porch on Manitoulin Island.
By Sharon Grose | Ontario Farmer Magazine
July 27, 2023
Lighthouse Festival Theatre’s summer production of Where You Are (by Kristen da Silva) opens with sisters Suzanne (Melanie Janzen) and Glenda (Susan Henley) sitting on their front porch on Manitoulin Island. Suzanne is bemoaning the fact that she doesn’t need a rooster to be her alarm clock. Glenda can get up at the crack of dawn with the rooster and chickens if she wants but Suzanne would just as soon sleep in until noon. Glenda just returned from church and Suzanne itching to find out the all the town gossip- why else does one go to church in a small town?
Sisters Glenda and Suzanne live a quiet retirement lifestyle selling homemade jam and hawthorn berry jelly on Manitoulin Island. This summer, their focusing on trying to orchestrate sightings of their handsome veterinarian neighbour and prepping for the visit of Suzanne’s grown daughter, Beth (Caroline Toal). But the things are complicated by a secret the sisters can no longer contain. Glenda and Suzanne apparently aren’t the only ones keeping secrets. When Beth lands on the island and admits to having some secrets of her own the three women realize it’s time to face things that will change the course of their lives. Secrets can no longer be secrets.
Suzanne and Glenda are totally devoted to each other and manage to share a house despite their different lifestyles. Suzanne raised her daughter – single handedly but continues to struggle to find the balance between mothering and smothering her daughter. Beth and Suzanne constantly clash. Suzanne is judgmental and critical of everything Beth does. They have a strained mother- daughter relationship. Glenda widowed, is a doting beloved Aunt to Beth and tries to keep the peace between mother and daughter which is not an easy task.
Then there is the cute guy who lives next door – the young veterinarian named Patrick (Gaelan Beatty) who is still getting over being left at the alter by his fiancé. There are some interesting connections between Beth and Patrick due to common denominators – both are rebounding from a recent break up, both are doctors – although one treats people while the other treats animals. Their various roles in the medical field make for some humorous moments. Will something develop between Beth and Patrick- only time will tell. If the two sisters have anything to say about it – definitely yes. But the two women have more things to deal with than budding relationships. Suzanne and Glenda start experimenting with weed – for medicinal purposes. The two are higher than a kite when they are discovered by Beth. Some candid discussions about life, love and mortality follow.
There is an interesting mix of funny and somber moments in this play. Simple lessons in life that gets you to thinking about appreciating people and the importance of family and community.
You won’t want to miss seeing this Canadian play at Lighthouse Festival Theatre. It is on n stage in Port Dover at Festival Theatre until Aug 5th and then on stage at Roselawn Theatre in Port Colborne from August 9th to August 20th.
Lighthouse Festival Theatre company was formed in 2022 bringing Port Dover’s Old Town Hall theatre and Port Colborne Roselawn theatre together as one theatre family.
Ontario Farmer readers can also attend two other Lighthouse Festival productions A Pack of Thieves by Norm Foster (Aug 16-Sept 2nd at Port Dover, or Sept 6-Sept 17 at Port Colborne, and Opry Gold with The Wayward Wind Band (Sept 5th-Sept 16 in Port Dover, Sept 20-Sept 24 in Port Colborne).
Tickets any of the show can be ordered by calling Lighthouse Festival Box Office 1-888-779-7703 or online https://lighthousetheatre.com/tickets/