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I sit here typing as policemen, escaped convicts, crooked politicians and crime reporters rush through the theatre at the GCTC. It’s a chaotic scene, filled with tear gas, bullets and laughter. Laughter? Oh yes, because, I am backstage with a cast of lawyers performing in the 13th annual GCTC Lawyers Play, His Girl Friday adapted by John Guare. The play is a culmination of thousands of non-billable hours volunteered by the lawyers, and thousands of professional theatre hours endured by the talented production team at the GCTC as they whipped us into somewhat respectable shape.
We performed our dress rehearsal for GCTC volunteers on Tuesday night, a preview on Wednesday night and we have three gala performances from Thursday to Saturday night. Tonight is the gala opening night and except for the fact that the Sens lost, it is going very well. Indeed, we are half-way through act two, my character has already committed suicide (in a funny way), and the crowd is laughing along with us - not at us. That is our sign that the show is doing well!
We’ve also got a great slew of cameos lined up for the run including Justice Rutherford and Justice Roy, Councillor Katherine Hobbs, MP Paul Dewar, MPP Yasir Naqvi and Senator Mike Duffy. Tonight Paul Dewar played the photographer and I can safely say he did a fine job as did Katherine Hobbs on preview night. They’ve set a high bar for the rest to follow. The cast includes lawyers (and a paralegal) who are just starting out in their careers up to and including senior members of the bar and judiciary, all united in doing our best for a great cause.
Not only are we raising substantial funds for the GCTC (this year we will have gone over the $1 million dollar mark for all the funds raised by the lawyer play over the years), but we also get to support a local charity. This year our charity partner is the Lawyers Zambia Project that is raising money to build a school in Zambia in memory of Iain Beaudoin, the son of Justice Beaudoin who is playing the mayor in the show.
On a personal note, I play Mollie Molloy a hysterical lady of the night with a heart of gold. Despite hurling myself out of a window each night, I am having a ton of fun. This is my 6th lawyers play, and hopefully, not my last. Each year gives me great memories, new friends and a chance to give back to the community through the medium of theatre. Thanks GCTC for enabling us to tread the boards for a great cause.