Play Readings

Several evenings during the month of October will be dedicated to public readings of previously unproduced and/or unpublished playscripts written by emerging playwrights.

The plays will be at various stages of development. Be part of one of the first audiences to experience the newest plays and works-in-progress and contribute your thoughts in a post-reading discussion with the authors and actors.

Doors open at 7:00 pm. Readings followed by audience discussion and social time. First come, first seated. Admission: $10 suggested donation.


October 1, 7:30 pm
The Best Brothers 
by Daniel MacIvor (Toronto, ON/Avondale, NS)
read by Daniel MacIvor & John Beale

Ardith “Bunny” Best has just died in an accident, leaving her sons Hamilton and Kyle to mourn in their very different ways. As each struggles to understand the other, the brothers begin to see more deeply into themselves and the unconventional woman who gave them birth.

Daniel MacIvor
Daniel MacIvor was born in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia in 1962. He is a stalwart of the Canadian theatre scene, having written and directed numerous award-winning productions including See Bob Run, Wild Abandon, 2-2-Tango, This Is A Play, The Soldier Dreams, You Are Here, How It Works, A Beautiful View, Communion, and Bingo! From 1987 to 2007 with Sherrie Johnson he ran da da kamera.  With long time collaborator Daniel Brooks, he created the solo performances House, Here Lies Henry, Monster, Cul-de-sac and This is What Happens Next.

Daniel has received a GLAAD Award and a Village Voice Obie Award in 2002 for his play In On It, the Governor General’s Literary Award for Drama for his collection of plays I Still Love You, Jessie Richardson Award for Best New Play (His Greatness) and in 2008, the prestigious Siminovitch prize in Theatre.

Currently, Daniel divides his time between Toronto and Avondale, Nova Scotia and he is playwright in residence at Tarragon Theatre in Toronto.  For additional information and to check out his weblog, please visit:

October 8, 7:30 pm
by Jordan Hall (Vancouver, BC)

Jordan Hall
Alone on a vast stretch of water, Annie Iversen recounts the strange chain of events that left her stranded in her son’s old kayak. A doting mother, Annie is blindsided when her son, Peter, falls in love with Julie, a passionate environmental activist, and finds herself struggling to keep Peter safe from the young woman’s dangerous world.

Jordan Hall is an emerging artist whose work has been dubbed “stellar, insightful” by Plank Magazine, “thoughtful” by CBC Radio, and “vivid, memorable” by NOW. Her writing for the stage includes her short works Red, The Second Last Man on Earth, Asleep at the Wheel, and The Possible Lives of Dolores Garcia Rodriguez, as well as her full-length play, Kayak, which recently won Samuel French’s 2010 Canadian Playwright’s competition.

October 11, 7:30 pm
Shannon/Joanna by
Andrea Dymond (Halifax, NS)

Raven and her best friend Shannon have always been inseparable… until something threatens their friendship.  Glenda thinks she knows what’s best for her daughter, Joanna.  The only problem is… Joanna doesn’t agree.  Shannon/Joanna explores the journey of two women whose lives intersect as each learns how to cope with the sudden death of a loved one.

Andrea Dymond
Andrea Dymond is a Halifax based playwright, actor, director and producer.  A graduate of both Queen’s University and the London Academy of Performing Arts, she has worked with many local companies including Neptune, Shakespeare By The Sea, Irondale, Bunnies (now 2b, which she also co-founded), Exodus, Forerunner and DaPoPo Theatres.  As a writer, she co-created Etiquette: A Clown Show, Eye Spy and Class Clowns with Bunnies (the latter two of which she also acted in), as well as ongoing scenes from Urban Mysteriez, which were presented at Café DaPoPo.  She has written a number of plays and this June, her 10-minute play Right Side Left Side was presented at a fundraiser by Once Upon a Time Theatre Collective.  A long time member and past president of PARC, she has also participated in their Colony and Home Delivery programs, as well as read excerpts from her work at their Cabarets.  A 20 minute version of her play Shannon/Joanna was first read at DaPoPo’s Live-In in 2010 and Andrea really wanted the Live-In to be the first place her full length draft of this play was read!

October 14, 7:30 pm

Madokht: Daughter of the Moon
by Aisha Sommer Zaman (Halifax,NS)

Aisha Sommer Zaman
This work, by one of DaPoPo's Acting Out! participants ("a fresh and formidable voice on the Halifax theatre scene” -The Coast: July 22, 2012), is about the tribulations a young woman living in Iran faces when she unintentionally outs herself to her strict father. She must confront her fears and decide whether or not breaking the sacred bond of a father and his daughter is worth the chance at a life with her soulmate. 

Aisha Sommer Zaman is new to Halifax's theatre scene. She first started playwrighting while attending a workshop at Dalhousie's “Dramafest”. She then furthered ventured into theatrical writing during DaPoPo's Acting Out! workshop. She has created two pieces that were performed as staged readings during The Queer Acts Festival at The Bus Stop Theatre.

October 15, 7:30 pm

All About Nothing by David Rimmington (Halifax, NS)
David Rimmington

A physics professor at a university has made a profound discovery.  He has proved, through a brilliant mathematical calculation that the universe does not exist.  There follow many dramatic and comic twists as people are forced to re-evaluate their beliefs about the meaning of existence.

David Rimmington has written a number of one act plays.  These have been performed at The Atlantic Fringe Festival (Dialogues for Maniacs, 2002), and at The King's Shorts Festival in Annapolis Royal, in 2007, 2009, and 2011.  His short play, Security Tabs, has been performed on the street by The Halifax Peace Coalition.  An actor in one of his pieces asked him if he'd ever written a two act play.  He replied that his mind was more geared for the short-story-play.  A month later he began to write the two act play All About Nothing.

October 17, 7:30 pm
Woyzeck, by Georg Büchner, new English translation by Eric Benson

An impoverished German soldier whose mental instability is pushed to a breaking point by the people around him, kills his common-law wife in a fit of jealousy and madness. Büchner’s 1837 script, unfinished at his death, is being interpreted and adapted for production by DaPoPo as a play with puppets. This early public reading will serve to introduce the text and help dramaturgically with the adaptation.

Eric Benson
Eric Benson has been a core member of DaPoPo Theatre since 2005, and is currently an Associate Director in the company. He has been a participant in the Michael Langham Workshop for Classical Direction at the Stratford Shakespeare Festival in 2011 and 2012. At the moment, he is developing Büchner's 'Woyzeck' into a puppet show, and Marlowe's 'Doctor Faustus' into a one-man production.

October 19, 7:30 pm
Galicia by Guillermo Verdecchia (Toronto, ON)

Read by the playwright  

A man falls down: A stand up lecture. Galicia is a work-in-progress about globalization and subjectivity, about eating one's way into the world, and the Centre for avant-garde geography.

Guillermo Verdecchia is a writer of drama and fiction as well as a director and actor. He is the recipient of a Governor-General's Award for Drama for his play Fronteras Americanas and a four-time winner of the Chalmers Canadian Play Award. His work, which includes the Governor-General shortlisted Noam Chomsky Lectures (with Daniel Brooks), the Seattle Times' Footlight Award-winning Adventures of Ali & Ali (with Marcus Youssef and Camyar Chai), A Line in the Sand (with Marcus Youssef), bloom, and Another Country has been anthologized, translated into Spanish and Italian, produced in Europe and the US, and is studied in Latin America, Europe and North America. As a director and actor he has worked at theatres across the country, from the Stratford Festival, where he directed Sunil Kuruvilla's Rice Boy to Vancouver's East Cultural Centre. An Associate Artist with Toronto's Soulpepper Theatre, Guillermo is also a theatre scholar, currently completing a PhD at the University of Toronto. He has published a number of articles and book chapters on aspects of intercultural theatre practice in Canada, and is a recipient of a Governor-General's Gold Medal for Academic Achievement.

October 22, 7:30 pm
Black Dragon Mountain by Roy Ellis (Halifax, NS)

Funny, racy, poetic and brash, a tragicomic road story about a young Chinese scholar whose search for physical perfection lands him in the court of a brutal Chinese Emperor. He soon discovers that in the Forbidden City of Peking, the games of conquest that men play are more severe. As betrayal, lust, power and threat of war begin to exert their influence on events, Shentong must answer the age old questions that all of us ask: who am I, why am I here, what should I do and how should I be in the world.

Roy Ellis
Roy Ellis is an actor, singer, playwright and therapist. His first play, "Malfunctions" was produced by a children's theater company in Thunder Bay, Ontario when he was all of sixteen. More recently Roy wrote and directed the musical comedy "General Hospital" which premiered at St. Matthew's United Church in 2009, followed by "They Came from Eekum Seekum", which played to sold-out audiences at Alderney Landing Theatre in May 2010. Roy can be heard from time to time on CBC's Mainstreet with Stephanie Domet where he opines as the preacher part of the panel,  "Poet, Preacher, Philosopher."

October 29, 7:30 pm:  DOUBLE BILL!
The Tragedy of the Manic Pixie Dreamgirl 

by Kristin Slaney (Halifax, NS)

Daniel is dealing with a case of writer’s block, a deteriorating relationship, and an unruly muse in fairy wings who bears more than a little resemblance to his current partner. When he begins to write a play about love, the lines between fiction and reality begin to blur, until the idealism he utilizes when writing female characters starts to reveal itself in his real life. Tragedy of the Manic Pixie Dream Girl is about what happens when art imitates life…and vis versa.


Abettor by Malcolm Murray (Stratford, PEI)

A play about murder and corpse disposal – explores the ease in which normal people can so quickly fall from grace by mere inertia. A bit comedic, but a bit creepy, too.

Kristin Slaney

Kristin Slaney is an actress and writer from Halifax, Nova Scotia. She is a core and founding member of Once Upon a Theatre Collective, who recently staged a production of her play Blue Moons & Waiting Rooms as part of the Atlantic Fringe Festival. This past July she co-wrote and co-directed a collaboration between Once Upon A Theatre Collective, wheelwright theatre, and the Halifax Music Co-Op orchestra this past July called What the Water Wrote. Kristin also attended the Writing With Style residency in September at the Banff Centre of the Arts to workshop the first chapter of an in-progress novel. Recently she completed a year-long short fiction workshop with novelist Heather Jessup, and she also did a playwriting class with Hans Boggild through Dalhousie’s Creative Writing program. Once Upon A will also stage an upcoming production of her play Poem for the Smallest Boy. Kristin is a recent graduate of Dalhousie University’s Theatre Studies program.

Malcolm Murray
Malcolm Murray has had two of his plays produced (“Chop Wood, Carry Water” and “The Philosopher”), has won the Prince Edward Island Playwrights award for “The Dancers,” has had two short stories published (“The Wheelchair Pusher” and “The Enlightenment Tour”), and has won two short story awards (“The Phantasmagoric Animal Bite Ward and Premonition Removal Clinic” and “Sandcastles”). In his day job as philosophy professor at the University of Prince Edward Island, he has published four philosophy books including The Atheist’s Primer. He is married and has one daughter.

October 31, 7:30 pm
Shadows on Oak Island 

by Garnet Hirst with Deborah Preeper (Nova Scotia)

Haunted by the loss of their son, an affluent Toronto couple retreat to Oak Island to save their crumbling marriage. Rene desperately tries to solve the mystery of the island believing that will reunite them with their son, while Jackson numbs his grief with alcohol. The island, and its resident self-professed expert, Wally, initially welcome Rene and Jackson... then everything appears to be conspiring against them and hard truths are revealed.

Deborah Preeper is a graduate of the Theatre Program at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia and of the Graduate Centre for Drama at the University ofToronto.  Her first play Perfidia, won top honours at the 1992 Theatre Antigonish One-Act Play Festival.  Her work has been seen throughout the Maritime Provinces. Deborah became obsessed with writing about  treasure and treasure hunters  while living near Oak Island in the 1980's.  Born and raised on Cape Breton Island, she now lives in Halifax.

Garnet Hirst is a member of the Writers Guild of Canada, has written over fifty TV scripts, and twenty plays. To date he has directed over one hundred productions, having worked at Toronto Arts Production, Young People's Theatre, Toronto Workshop Production, Columbus Centre, Nokee Kwee, Can-Asia Productions, Manitoba Theatre Centre, and was a regular writer for “Fred Penner's Place” on CBC. Garnet has received two nominations by the Writers Guild of Canada, for best new screenplay, Fiddle MacPhee and Galatea, the film adaptation of his hit play Grace and Lillian, which won the London Literacy Award. In 2006 his play Shadows on Oak Island won the Samuel French Canadian Playwrighting Award. He has written and directed a feature film Opus For A Miracle which is in postproduction and has also finished writing and directing the pilot for a TV series Slower you Move, Faster you Die, about a group of seniors unable to live on their pensions decide to commit a crime in order to end up in minimum security prison. He is presently directing a documentary Shared Care for the Collaborative Mental Health Care in Canada with CBC’s Dr. AJ, a movement that brings medical professionals and family members together to support their relatives with mental illness.

1 comment:

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