Kaitlin Williams as Lucy and Mack Gordon as Mr. Tumnus.

Alumni bring CS Lewis to UVic theatre

Show that toured BC with Pacific Theatre comes to Phoenix Theatre

University of Victoria theatre alumni who met at UVic’s Department of Theatre as fresh-faced first year students in 2004, return to the stage of the Phoenix Theatre with C.S. Lewis’ classic Narnia tale The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.

“I saw a production of it when I was really young, I think I was 12,” said Kaitlin Williams. “It was the first time I’d seen anything like that.”

The woman played a little girl, old woman and even male characters convincingly.

“Fast forward 15 years and I got to do it myself, which was a pinch me moment,” she said. “Then they cast Mack (Gordon) my husband and then we get to bring it back to UVic where we met. Oprah would call this a full circle moment.”

The two married in 2011 and were cast in 2012 for the two-actor Lion Witch and Wardrobe for Pacific Theatre and this month they bring it to UVic’s Phoenix Theatre.

“They let Mack and I bring it over here … so Mack and I are producing it ourselves, which is another challenge,” Williams said. “We worked together (at UVic) before we were married so we’re used to working together. We’re pretty good at it.”

This version of the story sees Peter and Lucy, now grown-up, return to the room and the old wardrobe where, years before, their adventures began. Here they relive their memories of Narnia, performing the roles of characters they met along the way, including Mr. Tumnus, the Beaver family, the evil White Witch and the mighty lion Aslan.

“It feels weird and exciting and fun,” Williams said of portraying all those characters. “There’s amazing sound design and technical supports, but it’s Mack and I. And the audience is another performer because they have to get into it. … We ask the audience to stretch their imagination and imagine you’re seeing a lion. Imagine you’re in a forest and it’s all winter.”

In 2013, the husband and wife duo played an engaged couple in Pacific Theatre’s Jessie-winning production of The Foreigner, and this past summer they were historical interpreters performing as a gold rush couple at Barkerville Historic Town.

“We joke that we are a two-for-one package and are always looking out for shows we can do together,” Williams said.

UVic’s Phoenix Theatre opens the season each year by celebrating the success of their theatre graduates with their Spotlight on Alumni.

“It’s our first time doing a show here in five years, since we were in school, so it’s fun to be back in that capacity,” Williams said. “I want to go to all my favourite little shops, visit Caddy Bay. Just be here and visit family and friends.”

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe runs Oct. 9 to 18. Visit finearts.uvic.ca/theatre/phoenix to ticket information.

Get your tickets to The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe:

Single Tickets: $16 Student/$20 Senior/$24 Adult/$24 Weekends at 8 p.m. (Preview $7, available after 5 p.m.) Season Subscription: $36 for 3 plays & $48 for 4 plays. Details at phoenixtheatres.ca Phoenix Box Office 250-721-8000.

Public Preview 8pm: Oct. 7 (Followed by talkback session)

Evening Performances 8pm: Oct. 9 (Opening Night), 10 (Q&A lecture), 11, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18 Matinee Performances 2pm: Saturday, Oct. 11 (with sign language) and Oct. 18 Special Events:

• Tuesday, Oct. 7 8pm: Public talkback session after the preview night performance.

• Friday, Oct. 10 7pm: Preshow Q&A discussion with Kaitlin, Mack and professor Jan Wood. • Saturday, Oct. 11 at 2 p.m.: Sign language interpretation with Deaf interpreter Nigel Howard.

 

Just Posted

Check out what’s happening in Greater Victoria this weekend

From swimming championships to Oak Bay Light Up, there’s plenty to keep you busy this weekend

VicPD chief rescues lost $10 bill in downtown Victoria

The note was promptly returned to its owner unharmed

Beloved local flower shop open doors at new location

Thorn & Thistle expand offerings in new, bigger space

Oak Bay teacher wins 91.3 the Zone’s Teacher of the Month

French teacher at École Willows School wins custom Converse from Baggins and Big Wheel gift cards

Island champion volleyball team heads for provincials Wednesday

What Oak Bay High lacks in volleyball experience the make up for in athleticism and competitiveness

Victoria Royals giving a boost to fund inspired by Tragically Hip singer

Downie Wenjack Fund recipient of funds raised starting at tonight’s WHL game vs. Seattle

BC Ferries vehicle traffic last summer was best ever

CEO says positive results reduce future pressure on fares

Dead rats on doorstep greets Summerland mayor

Two rodents have been delivered to Peter Waterman’s doorstep

False killer whale ‘Chester’ dies at Vancouver Aquarium

He was found stranded near Tofino in July 2014 and only had a 10 per cent chance of making it at the time

Panda picks Argonauts for the win

Giant panda at the Toronto Zoo picks Argos to win Grey Cup on Sunday

Black Friday fervour wanes as some consumers, retailers shun practice

Some businesses are choosing to opt out, while some shoppers are turning to buying online

Stay safe on B.C. roads this holiday season

RCMP warn drivers to plan a safe ride home or suffer the consequences this holiday season

Trudeau apologizes to excluded residential school students

PM makes statement to former students in Nfld who were left out of previous compensation, apology

Most Read