Sidekick kicks off all-Canadian theatre season with a mystery

A new murder mystery by Ottawa playwright John Muggleton helps kick-off the 22nd season for the Sidekick Players Club next week at the Tsawwassen Arts Centre.

Burn will be the opening production of a season of all-Canadian works for the local theatre company.

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In Burn, famous writer Tara Walters disappeared five years ago without a trace. Now her husband Robert has discovered a trove of her unpublished material, which he hopes revives his missing wife’s fame.

His friends David, a money hungry publisher, and Samira, a sharp lawyer, are suspicious of Robert’s motives. Meanwhile, Paul, another close friend and writer, has died.

At the start of the play, Paul’s mysterious daughter Eve is about to arrive and threatens to uncover a tangle of ugly secrets, which the friends have kept hidden for years.

Burn is currently having successful runs in Ontario and New Brunswick. Sidekick’s production will be its Western Canada debut.

“For this production, we have secured a truly outstanding cast of talented performers who are committed to creating a professional quality experience for the South Delta audience,” said director Patrick Truelove, adding the show features original music by local composer Quincy Chimich.

“This isn’t you classic murder mystery. There are layers of pretense and secrecy that the audience has to uncover, so it’s going to be quite an interesting journey.”

The cast includes Emma Young as Eve, Marci Chimich as Samira, Mark East as Robert and Jeff Pannell as David.

This is Young’s first production with Sidekick. She said she is thrilled to be working with the company.

“I just really liked the complexity of the character,” she said. “At first she comes across as a very innocent little thing, who just wants to know more about her father, but then she unravels more and more and as the play progresses, you can see that she knows more than she leads on. You never really know what she knows. I like playing that contrast of character.”

Pannell has been with Sidekick for a few years now. The Ladner actor just finished the Wild Guys, the final show of Sidekick’s 2017/18 season.

“Pat was working backstage on that production, so we got to talking and he needed another actor for this one, so I read it over and jumped in,” Pannell said. “It’s been a lot of fun. It’s great working with some different people.”

Rehearsals started in August. Truelove said it was a long process to find the right four people for the show.

“It’s asking a lot to take four adults and say this is the main thing you are going to be doing for the next three months of your life, and you will get really nothing except the experience of doing it, so I’m just overwhelmed by the commitment of these four,” he said.

Burn runs from Oct. 11 to Oct. 27 with shows Thursday through Saturday at 8 p.m. There will also be 2 p.m. matinees on Oct. 14 and 21. Tickets can be bought in advance by calling 604-288-2415.

The Tsawwassen Arts Centre is located at 1172-56th St.


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