When Stephen Torrence and Karen Golden moved from the Lower Mainland to Qualicum Beach last year, it didn’t take long for them to establish a theatre company.
The couple had long been involved in community theatre on the Lower Mainland, so when they found Qualicum’s ECHO Players were accepting entries for their annual One Act Play Festival, the duo created Hair of the Dog Productions.
“When we decided we were going to move over here, we knew it was going to be a big change in our lives and we said to each other and to ourselves, ‘Well, we’ll just ease into theatre,’” Golden said. “Well there was no easing in – we jumped in. Before we knew it, we were heavily committed to a whole bunch of projects.”
From March 6 to 9 Hair of the Dog is staging its first full-length production, Nora and Delia Ephron’s Love, Loss and What I Wore, at Nanaimo’s Harbour City Theatre.
The play is made up of a series of vignettes centred around five women in different places in their lives and the significance of the clothing they wore at the time. Torrence will direct they play, while Golden is part of the cast.
It’s a play that they’ve long wanted to mount since first reading the script. Golden said it immediately “jumped out” at them.
“I think whenever you can tell stories that maybe are difficult or poignant or meaningful, but tell them in a way that draws people together and even makes them laugh, I think you’ve got something special,” Golden said.
Added Torrence, “Every woman would be able to relate to it, of all ages, but as a man directing five women, I also can because I have sister and I had a mother and I have a wife and so I’ve observed and experienced and lived alongside people who were making this journey and it spoke to me the first time I read it.”
Although Torrence and Golden are new to the area, they said the mid-Island theatre community has been friendly and welcoming towards them. Golden said the play has brought her closer to her cast mates.
“The work unites you,” she said. “Even if you don’t know each other, the excitement of the project breaks down those initial barriers and you get to know each other pretty quickly.”
WHAT’S ON … Hair of the Dog productions presents Love, Loss and What I Wore by Nora and Delia Ephron at the Harbour City Theatre from March 6 to 9 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets $18 online or cash only at the door.