November 21 will be the last performance of the Thorold Community Theatre (TCT) play Money Matters, a farce by Michael and Susan Parker, for the first time in Canadian theatre. Directed by TCT member John Dickout, the comedic play is a hilarious two hours for theatre lovers of all ages.
The Thorold Community Theatre was founded in 1986, and aims to be an active participant in the flourishing Niagara Region by using the arts as an entertaining force in the community.
The theatre is a nonprofit organization that is able to stay active in the community with the help of ticket sales and the support of local businesses who sponsor the theatre group each time they put on a new play.
The Community Theatre was presented with the “Citizen of the Year” award in 1998 from the Thorold Chamber of Commerce, and it is an accolade they are extremely proud to hold onto.
While the Theatre group may seem small, they are a bit of an undiscovered gem in the Niagara region. They have been known to produce almost professional quality plays; the sets are second to none, the actors are experienced and talented – some of which list television and film credits in their bios. After 28 seasons, it’s clear that the Thorold Community Theatre knows how to produce a compelling play. The 1,000 to 1,200 patrons that come out to each show, over its typically eight-performance run, are a testament to that. The current play, Money Matters, is no exception to the group’s knack for entertaining members of the Niagara region.
The play was a delight from start to finish, garnering continued laughs from the audience throughout. Each of the actors and actresses played their parts with an air of professionalism, never breaking character once or messing up their lines.
Considering the Thorold Community Theatre Group works out of a local church, Trinity United Church, the set for this seasons play was impressive. It was large and very detailed, and it functioned perfectly for its intended uses.
The comedic farce features only six characters, each one’s role as important as the next.
The play is about the late Mr. Hammond, who spent twenty years printing counterfeit $20 bills on a printing press he built in the basement of Monet Manor. After his death ten years ago, his faithful retainer George and his daughter Annie continued the family business for Mr. Hammond’s widow who recently passed away.
Contrary to her promise to leave the manor and all her assets to George and Annie, she has given the manor to a stranger, Mr. Bud Davis. They offer to buy the manor from him, but he is set on turning it into a retirement home for ladies.
Determined to keep the manor, Annie invites an old friend and sorority sister, Charmaine Beauregard, to play the role of a ghost, to help convince Bud that the manor is unsuitable for a retirement home because it is haunted. Annie invites her neighbour, Marilena Contesa de Buzau de Severin, a self-proclaimed psychic from Transylvania, to hold a séance later that evening.
The play features twists and turns, which elicited multiple gasps from audience members, who played along eagerly with the show’s silly antics and jokes.
Playgoers seemed to thoroughly enjoy the hilarious characters of Charmaine Beauregard and Bud Davis in particular, as each humorous line they delivered was greeted with loud laughter and applause.
Thorold Community Theatre President Rob Goslin had a starring roll in the play as George, and has been involved with the TCT for about 20 years now, and plans to bring his experience and love for theatre to the group for as long as they will let him.
The play also starred Krissy Neumann as Annie, Lou Bradley as Marilena, Lily Groulx as Charmaine, George Doros as Bud, and Ryan Lunn as Bernard.
Be sure to check out the remaining two showings for Money Matters on Friday November 20, and Saturday November 21. The farce promises lots of laughs and will have you on edge for its 120 minute run, waiting to find out the ending’s big surprise twist.
For more information about the Thorold Community Theatre, check them out online at thoroldtheatre.ca
Assistant Arts & Life Edito