TAINTED JUSTICE by Don Nigro
March 2 to 24, 2018
Director: Victoria Shepherd
All production photos by Dave A. Fitzpatrick
Click to play. Trailer by Rhys Fulton-Doyle, music by John Stuart Campbell
Watch director Victoria Shepherd talk about the play….
“This play has everything: greed, lust, murder, family secrets. And Shepherd and the cast do a great job weaving past and present, memory and dream, and complex relationships in this true Canadian crime drama.”
“It always amazes me what this theatre can do within the confines of such a small space. The entire cast come off extremely professional, utilizing Alexis Chubb’s stage design to the fullest … Kudos to the amazing women who put this all together, producers Theresa Arneaud and co-producer Diane Ku1pers, as well as Director Victoria Shepherd.”
“Chris O’Bray … is much more devilishly charming than Mr.Dicaprio … a very versatile actor! / Dennis Mockler, who is so good at his part he could impersonate Stephen Harper for a living / Peta Mary Bailey was lovely as Maudie / Katherine Anne Fairfoul … gives a standout performance in a role not often given to women: that of a well respected, lecherous cad / hats off to her [director Victoria Shepherd] for this achievement.”
About the play…
Drawn from facts surrounding a real murder mystery on Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia – with flashbacks to the Klondike – Tainted Justice is a compelling drama by the author of Ravenscroft (a hit of our 2008-9 season.)
Pearl, a troubled young woman, is haunted by doubts about who actually murdered her father in the dark woods by the cranberry bogs at twilight one August evening in 1913. Her cousin, an eccentric attorney obsessed with seeing Buster Keaton movies, defended the accused murderer. Her uncle, who loves mine shafts, was the accused man’s friend. Her mother is a beautiful and enigmatic woman from whom she has become painfully estranged. The accused murderer is a charming liar who is fascinated by antique doorknobs and insists that he once nearly married Emily Bronte in Moose Jaw.
As Pearl confronts these people, she is pulled deeper and deeper into a dark labyrinth of desire, lies and ambiguous betrayals. By turns funny, haunting, and frightening, this intricately plotted investigation into what can truly be known about other people and their motives weaves memory, testimony, and scenes of twisted confrontation into a compelling tapestry of darkness and light.
“Lures you into its web of intrigue with the appeal of a finely crafted mystery.”
~ Los Angeles Times
About Don Nigro, the playwright…
Audiences may know Don Nigro as the author of Ravenscroft on which the 1999 Peter O’Toole film The Manor was based. Nigro is among the most frequently published and widely produced playwrights in the world, with over four hundred plays, of which Samuel French has published 187. He has continued to build a diverse body of dramatic literature, employing a wide variety of dramatic conventions and styles of presentation. He has written monologues and epics, spare realistic dramas and surreal homicidal puppet farces, plays with music and verse plays. His work has been translated into French, Italian, Spanish, German, Polish, Greek, Russian, Dutch, Lithuanian and Chinese, winning countless international awards.
About Victoria Shepherd, the director…
A drama graduate from the University of Toronto, Victoria lives in the Bloor West/Junction neighbourhood, so she’s very much ‘at home’ directing at Village Players. The last plays she directed for us were the charming Canadian drama Queen Milli of Galt in 2013 and the Canadian comedy Real Estate in 2011.
As a director-in-demand, she has also directed August: Osage County, The Tale of the Allergist’s Wife, and Tennessee Williams’ Summer and Smoke for Alumnae Theatre, while her directing credits for Amicus Theatre include Les Liaisons Dangereuses, Scotland Road, and Moonlight and Magnolias. Victoria has also directed for the InspiraTO Festival, the New Ideas Festival, the Toronto Fringe Festival, Poculi Ludique Societas, and for several independent theatre companies.
As a director, Victoria sees herself as a facilitator. “I’m about instinct. I want it to come from the actors,” she says, “I want the characters to come from the gut.”