Book of Ruth a ‘young adult’ take for Bumbershoot

Ruth finds solace in drawing elaborate pictures, which transport them far beyond the confines of their prison.

Bumbershoot Children’s Theatre Company will introduce a more serious theme as it launches the first of its new Theatre for Young Adult productions from April 17 to 27.

The Book of Ruth, which is set in a Nazi internment camp, tells a poignant tale of love between generations as Hanna and her granddaughter Ruth assist each other through daily struggles.

Five leading Kelowna area actors head the cast including Tia Hatley-Webster as Ruth and Josephine Stebbings as Hanna, together with Antony Knight, Brad Hull and Richard Knight.  The play is described as touching and thoughtful and Bumbershoot artistic director Tracy Ross encourages parents to call and ask about content and appropriateness for their children.

As with all Bumbershoot productions this year there will be a community involvement partner, in this case, the Kelowna Museum. The Community Night program at 6 p.m. on Friday, April 11 will feature a reading of an excerpt of the play by Tracy Ross followed by a discussion by representatives of the Museum.  Everyone interested is welcome to attend this event, which will take place at Bumbershoot Theatre, #125, 1295 Cannery Lane.

The Book of Ruth will run from Thursday through Saturday evenings at 6.30 p.m. and Saturday matinees at 2 p.m. from April 17 – 20 and 24 – 27.  There will also be Sunday afternoon matinees at 2 p.m. on April 20 and 27. Tickets are available at the Bumbershoot Box Office at the theatre or by calling 778-478-0142.

In the play Hanna and her granddaughter Ruth are separated from the rest of their family and struggle in the internment camp to preserve their humanity, culture and each other. While Hanna perpetuates her spirit by sharing her many treasured recipes with Ruth, Ruth finds solace in drawing elaborate pictures, which transport them far beyond the confines of their prison.

Written by Deborah Lynn Frockt, the play won the prestigious AT&T ‘On Stage’ award where it was described as ‘deeply moving and ultimately uplifting’.

An additional feature of The Book of Ruth will be the participation of legendary actor Jeff Hyslop (Phantom of the Opera) who will work with Bumbershoot on this production as well as the upcoming A Year with Frog and Toad which will be presented from May 15 to 25.  Along with working with the casts, Hyslop will lead a series of workshops and can be booked for private sessions.  For more information the private sessions and workshops, contact Bumbershoot Theatre by calling 778-478-0142.

The 2014 Bumbershoot productions are complemented by a new Passport Program which offers children special pre and post show activities that they can bring to each production, inspired by the theme: ‘Oh, The Places You’ll Go…’.  Additional information is available on the Bumbershoot website

Bumbershoot, which was launched in 2009, is a non-profit registered charitable theatre company dedicated to introducing Okanagan youth and children to the magic of the theatre.

In addition to its live theatre performances the children’s theatre company also offers a full selection of drama workshops and classes. Another activity is its residency program, which is done in conjunction with participating Okanagan schools. The residency offers a week-long in-school program which immerses students in a drama workshop as part of the school’s curriculum. After gaining first hand drama knowledge and experience the students host a performance for parents with the proceeds going to the school. Full information on the new Bumbershoot season as well as its other activities can be found on their website:


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