A&E » Arts

A tale like no other



WHO: The DuffleBag Theatre Company

WHERE: Our Lady of the Mountains Community Centre

WHEN: Saturday, March 17

Warning! If you enjoy traditional theatre with well-versed and seasoned actors, read no further. If you prefer a relaxing evening in your red plush theatre seat, stay home! The DuffleBag Theatre is bringing their hilarious, unconventional and interactive adaptation of Peter Pan to the resort.

Legend has it that this wacky quartet of troubadours – Rod Keith, Jim Doucette and Marcus and Michelle Lundgren – banded together in 1992 after a little Herald appeared under a tree outside the Duffle Bag Theatre in London, Ontario. He possessed a duffle bag of his own, full of magical costumes that transform anyone who wears them into part of the story. Before disappearing, the funny little man passed on the bag, making the group promise to travel far and wide spinning their tales. That’s just what they did, making The DuffleBag Theatre Company "nearly world famous".

As per the instructions of the Herald, members of the audience are plucked from their seats to become the stars of the show. So if playing Peter or Wendy isn’t on your agenda, sit at the back – waaaay at the back. But if you’ve always wanted to lead a fairy tale life, here’s your chance.

The show is led by a narrator who encourages the actors – professional and volunteer – to use spontaneity and improvisation to act out the story line. The audience, too, is encouraged to dictate the plot by shouting out suggestions. Each show is completely different from the last. All are entertaining and magical.

DuffleBag boasts a repertoire of 14 shows, from classical to contemporary. The troupe is completely versatile, prepared to perform inside or out, adapting their set and lighting to the environment. With a broad range of talent and a keen sense of audience sensitivity, they’ve entertained nearly 86,000 people, from office parties to school classes. The Whistler performance of Peter Pan is bound to delight the young and young at heart.

DuffleBag Theatre is part of The Whistler Community Arts Council’s Showcase 2001. Tickets are available from the Arts Council office next to the library. Adults: $18 advance, $20 door. Students: $7. Family of four: $40.