As theatres sit dark around the world, there’s a glimmer of light this summer in Guelph. Guelph Museums re-launches McCrae House Backyard Theatre with limited runs of two shows: Sons of ‘17 and Keeping the Homefires Burning.
“The McCrae House backyard provides an intimate outdoor theatre setting like no other,” says museum manager Tammy Adkin. “Because it’s such a versatile space, we can reconfigure the seating for each show, ensuring the necessary physical distancing for individual and family or social circle seating.”
Back by popular demand, Sons of ‘17 will run from Aug. 13 to 15 with performances at 7 p.m., as well as a 2 p.m. matinee performance Saturday, Aug. 15. Sons of ‘17 debuted at McCrae House during the summer of 2016 and was performed in Belgium and France during Guelph Museums’ “In the Footsteps of John McCrae” tour commemorating the 100th anniversary of the passing of Lieutenant-Colonel John McCrae. Performed by Mike Ford (Moxy Früvous) and Murray Foster (Moxy Früvous, Great Big Sea), an unlikely pair of musicians meets in Guelph during the spring of 1917 to rehearse songs for soldier recruitment, all while revealing home front emotions, opinions and diversions of the time.
Keeping the Homefires Burning will run Aug. 20 to 22 with performances at 7 p.m., and a 2 p.m. matinee performance Saturday, Aug. 22. From the home front to the trenches, Ian Bell presents songs, stories, and instrumental music from the First World War era. Bell has performed across North America, on his own and with many ensembles. A musician with a Celtic flair, Bell’s repertoire includes traditional Canadian music and many original compositions.
Following health and safety guidelines provided by Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health, the Museum has introduced enhanced cleaning protocols and new measures to keep guests, performers, and staff safe. Individual and family/social circle seating will be assigned, respecting physical distancing protocols.
Tickets are $25 + HST each, or $40 + HST for both performances. Tickets are available at guelphmuseums.ca or 519-836-1221. Capacity is limited, advance booking is encouraged.
McCrae House is located at 108 Water St. For more information, click here.