Mary Poppins, TorQ and Trudeau part of 20th HSF season
By Sue Tiffin
Published Nov. 22, 2018
Beloved magical nanny Mary Poppins is coming to Haliburton next summer, opening the 20th season of the Highlands Summer Festival with a musical the whole family will enjoy.
The line-up for the Highlands Summer Festival, which begins next June, was announced on Nov. 18 at McKeck’s Tap and Grill in Haliburton.
“Guaranteed to steal your heart, this tune-filled musical will be a must see for everyone in the family,” said Scot Denton, artistic director, of the Mary Poppins announcement. “Like the fabled nanny herself, you’ll fall in love all over again with the practically perfect classic songs like ‘A Spoonful of Sugar,’ ‘Chim Chim Cheree,’ ‘Let’s Go Fly a Kite,’ and the tongue-twisting ‘
ious,’ as they come to life in the beloved musical.”
Youth tickets for all three matinee performances of Mary Poppins will be offered for $20, giving those 18 and under the chance to see the show at a reduced rate. Matinees will be held July 1, 5 and 7 at 2 p.m. Evening performances will be held June 30, July 2 to 4 and July 8 and 9 at 7:30 p.m.
In mid-July, the focus will switch from singing to dancing, with Richard Alfieri’s Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks taking the stage.
“The show pairs a gay dance instructor with the elderly wife of a Baptist minister in a Florida setting,” said Denton. As the lessons play out, personalities clash and sparks fly until the surprising conclusion of the show, which opened in Los Angeles before moving to Broadway. Performances take place July 15 to 18 at 7:30 p.m., July 19 and 21 at 2 p.m. and July 22 and 23 at 7:30 p.m.
“And if dancing is not your thing, perhaps a round of golf has appeal,” said Denton, introducing The Ladies Foursome, the third production of the Highlands Summer Festival. The play, written by Norm Foster, features three friends who head out to the links for a memorial round, following the funeral of their golf partner. Filling the missing spot is another acquaintance of the deceased, who is unknown to the other three. As they chat their way through 18 holes, surprises, secrets and confessions come to the surface during what the HSF press release says is a hilarious and heartwarming round of golf.
Performances of The Ladies Foursome run from July 29 to Aug. 1 at 7:30 p.m., August 2 and 4 at 2 p.m., and Aug. 6 to 8 at 7:30 p.m.
“We have some interesting offerings in our town concert slots,” said Denton. “Trudeau Stories is a one-woman show written and performed by Brooke Johnson.” Johnson became friends with Pierre Elliot Trudeau in 1985, and gives personal insight into their surprising friendship. The story has been receiving acclaim throughout the country. Trudeau Stories will be featured in the evening on July 10 and 11, and for a matinee on July 12.
TorQ percussion quartet, one of Canada’s premiere percussion ensembles, will make some noise on the stage on July 24, 25 and during a matinee on July 26. The quartet is committed to making percussion music accessible to audiences that span generations.
“We have crafted a varied and entertaining mix of productions this season and we think the program will appeal to a broad cross-section of our community,” said Denton.
Passes for the 20th season of the Highlands Summer Festival are now on sale for $160 for all five productions. Single ticket prices are $37.50. Passes can be ordered by calling 705-457-9933 or 855-457-9933, or online through a secure ticket portal at highlandssumerfestival.on.ca. Performances are held at the Northern Lights Performing Arts Pavilion in Haliburton.
“There is something here for everyone and we look forward to seeing you at the theatre,” said Highlands Summer Festival president Jack Brezina.