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Lighthouse Festival launches summer season with Norm Foster comedy

Norm Foster’s comedic hit Doris and Ivy in the Home kicks off the 2024 summer season at Lighthouse Festival in Port Dover.

May 19, 2024

The Stratford Beacon Herald

By Postmedia Staff

Directed by Lighthouse Artistic Associate Jane Spence, the production runs from May 22 to June 8 in Port Dover, followed by shows in Port Colborne from June 12 to 23.

The play is a heartfelt comedy that examines friendship, age, and the transitions of life in a retirement home setting.

“Norm foster’s writing, rich with humour and poignancy, reminds us of the importance of seeking out meaningful connections at whatever stage of life we find ourselves,” Spence observed. “Through Doris and Ivy, we witness a dynamic and touching journey of self-discovery and companionship.

“Our talented cast brings a wonderful blend of authenticity and warmth to their roles, embodying the essence of Foster’s characters with grace and charm.”

Actor Ian Deakin portrays a charming retiree named Walter.

“I’ve known playwright Norm Foster for decades and have appeared in several of his productions,” Deakin explained. “My character in Doris and Ivy in the Home is an eccentric and heartfelt role, but essentially fulfills the playwright’s promise of lots of laughs too.”

Actress Melanie Janzen stars as the wise and witty Doris.
“Doris is very much ‘what you see is what you get.’ I like her brashness and her confidence. There’s no beating around the bush with Doris,” Janzen shared. “I could stand to be a little more like her!”

Brigitte Robinson portrays the ever-optimistic Ivy, and said she was drawn to the role for the chance to work again with director Jane Spence with whom she had acted in Calendar Girls at the Mirvish Theatre in Toronto, and with Janzen whose work she admired in their days together at the Shaw Festival.

“I thought Doris and Ivy in the Home was Norm Foster at his best,” said Robinson. “Not only is it very funny but it shines a light on the lives and relationships of women and men as they age.”

Tickets are available now at lighthousetheatre.com, by calling the box office at 1-888-779-7703 or by visiting the theatre.