Thursday, July 30, 2009

Ukrainian Canadian playwright taking Canadian history mainstream

According to a recent article, Ukrainian Canadian composer Danny Schur is determined to make Strike! a Winnipeg tourism mainstay. The story centres on locals caught up in the internationally significant 1919 Winnipeg General Strike.

The play debuted at Rainbow Stage four years ago, and was also performed in front of city hall two months ago, complete with a street mob, horses and a replica streetcar.

Since its Rainbow Stage debut, it's become a vastly different show according to the composer. The stage version is twice as long and much more intimate, the script and song lyrics have been revised, and the ending has changed.

The two-hour, 18-song production is showing through to Aug. 5 at the Canwest Performing Arts Centre at The Forks in Winnipeg.

Schur hopes the play will become an annual fixture at national historic site and as integral to Winnipeg tourism as the musical Anne of Green Gables is to Prince Edward Island.

Read the full (and excellent) article here.

For a viewer's personal perspective, there's a review of the 2007 performance here.

If you can't catch the live performance at The Forks this year, here's the trailer and a clip from the movie version (which you can buy here):

Proof of Concept demo trailer for the Strike! movie musical:



Demo trailer from the movie:

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