What is your role in/on this production? I am the Assistant Stage Manager for Walterdale’s production of Shatter. I communicate between creative departments and help keep track of the actors during performance. The Shatter creative team has been incredibly collaborative, and I feel privileged to have analyzed the play with the performers in rehearsal. My favorite part of being the Assistant Stage Manager is bringing Jordan Campion coffee.
What is your background in theatre? At Walterdale? My first acting role was tree 1 of 3, in my grade three class production of Hansel and Gretel. However, it was my fifth grade after school drama class production of A Christmas Carol and my role as Ghost of Christmas Past that truly inspired my love of theatre. I have since grown to become a theatre and humanities educator with Edmonton Public Schools. I have worked creatively in theatre as an actor, designer, director, and now assistant stage manager! Shatter is my first Walterdale production and I have loved exploring the space and getting to know the wonderful group of people who make theatre magic happen!
What brought you out for this show? I attended the University of Alberta with the director of Shatter, Josh Languedoc. Over our time in university, Josh and I collaborated on many artistic projects, including attending the Indra Congress in Derry/Londonderry Northern Ireland. When Josh expressed that he was looking to build his creative team for this production I jumped at the opportunity to work with him again. I have wanted to work on a play with Walterdale for many years and I had a chance to finally bring my dream to fruition.
What do you think audiences will take away from this show? Why should they come and see it? Shatter is a poignant and relatable story to our current socio-political climate. Opening on the 100th anniversary of this major Canadian tragedy, Shatter reminds audiences that we haven’t come quite as far as we would like to think we have. In the face of danger and disaster, fear can still blind us and make us distrust our neighbors. As a social studies teacher, I believe that we study the past to find connections between the past and our present while making predication about our future. I hope that audiences will reflect on the mistakes Canadians have made before and think about how they as individuals can influence our future. I think audiences should come and see Shatter because Trina Davies’ story is truly captivating and will deepen their understanding of a terrible Canadian tragedy.
Shatter deals with a major event in Canadian history that Canadians today might not know too much about. Are there any other major events in Canadian history that you feel we should know more about than we do?
I think that a lot of young Canadians don’t know a lot about the 1970 October Crisis. The Front de liberation du Québec (FLQ) kidnapped British diplomat James Cross and provincial cabinet Minister of Labour Pierre Laporte, declaring them political prisoners. The FLQ forced CBC to broadcast their manifesto, and a letter of captivity from Pierre Laporte. Laporte was eventually executed by the FLQ, his body found strangled in the trunk of a car.
There were multiple bombings through out Quebec, primarily in Montreal, detonated by FLQ members. Pierre Elliot Trudeau invoked the War Measure Act and had military enforcement patrolling the streets of Quebec. The October Crisis is the only time in Canadian history the War Measures Act has been invoked during peace times.
I think it is important that Canadians understand the October Crisis for a number reasons. One good reason to know about this part of Canadian history is to know how our fellow Canadians have responded to political unrest. The October Crisis is a bloody, vulgar, and shocking part of our not so distant past.