The 1930s: a desperate time on the Canadian prairies, where a multi-year drought and the Great Depression make life almost impossible for Jen, an Irish-born war bride, and Bill, an English-born blacksmith. Like today’s pandemic and environmental crisis, the bad times seem to have no end, and the temptation to take desperate measures is strong— but how do you distinguish between inspiration and madness? As Bill says, “Hare-brained ideas, don’t seem so when you are desperate.
Production Photos, Drayton Arms Theatre, July 2022
Kevin Longfield, Playwright
Kevin Longfield’s path to theatre went through a degree in mechanical engineering and a career in manufacturing before earning a theatre degree and acting, producing, and writing plays. His play Going Down the River appears in the anthology Canadian Mosaic: 6 plays and was on the curriculum at Matej Bel University in Slovakia. Prospects and Pigeon Pie is one of four plays he completed during the pandemic. He is delighted to be on this program with fellow Dramatists in Dotage member Lynn Martin. Thanks to Kay Brattan and the folks at Little Lion for producing this event, and to Yvette Nolan for early dramaturgical advice.
Ronja Siljander, Director
Ronja Siljander is Finland born and London based theatre director, drama facilitator, pedagogue and performer. Her visual, powerful and movement-based directing is often conducted with witty, arrogant and sincere spatial and emotional understanding of contemporary theatre meeting classical text. She always seeks to find ‘the fun’ out of injustice and disarray in arts. Her core strengths as a young practitioner are in devised and physical theatre as well as work with youth and emerging artists.
After finishing her BA degree in drama-based pedagogy, facilitating and applied theatre at Turku Arts Academy in Finland she graduated with distinction from Masters program of theatre directing at East 15 Acting School in 2020. She’s worked as a theatre director, assistant director, drama teacher and ensemble member in Finland, UK and internationally, including GITIS, Russian Institute of Theatre Arts and Zurich University of Arts ZHdK. She’s deepened her understanding in physical performance through dance, circus, clowning, mime and puppetry. In 2022 she developed her own devised, original work with a grant from Arts Promotion Centre Finland and worked as drama facilitator in primary schools for various companies in the UK.
In life she’s inspired by gender and opportunity equal approaches that leave no one with physical, mental or social obstacles in marginal. She’s a passionate roller derby skater, a film nerd, morning yogi and closet poet who will never say no to a nice piece of cake and a cup of coffee or an invitation to join for a day in an amusement park.
Daniel Cristofori has been an award-winning actor in Toronto Canada for over a decade, working in film, TV, theatre and commercials. He now lives in the UK with his wife and little baby boy. He is happy to work with Little Lion Theatre Company once again after previously playing the title role in their 2020 production of Mustard. He holds a Masters degree in Acting from East 15 Acting School and has attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York. Imdb.me/danielcristofori www.spotlight.com/0212-7830-7977
Shea Wojtus, Jen
Shea Wojtus is a London-based actor and clown from the icy tundra of Northern Canada, with bountiful experience in physical comedy. She completed three years of training at Humber School of Creative & Performing Arts in Toronto, before moving to Paris to continue her studies at Ecole Philippe Gaulier. Since moving to London she has performed extensively in stage, comedy and immersive performance, working for companies such as COLAB Productions, Secret Cinema, Darling & Edge, and MashUp! Productions. Most recently she performed as The Chief in Schematic Theatre’s immersive production Viper Squad. She is an associate practitioner with SpyMonkey, and can often be found performing across comedy stages in London.
Alexander Osborne, Mack
Alexander (Alex) Osborne is a Canadian actor based in East London, and is thrilled to be part of this showcase. He’s been living here for almost 3 years now. He’s an honors graduate from East 15’s MFA International Acting Program. He is also a BA graduate from York University’s (Toronto) Theater Studies Program, and a graduate of The Second City Toronto Longform Conservatory Improv Program. While studying at East 15 he was in productions of A Christmas Carol, Asian Exclusion Act (The Corbett Theater), Incognito (Bridewell Theatre), Much Ado About Nothing (The Globe Theater) and wrote and performed his solo piece Who is Van Helsing (The Corbett Theater). He has also done various projects that include theater, film and voiceover in both Canada and the UK. Some of Alex’s credits include Pascal’s Pals (Short Film, Brighton), Intravene (Darkfield Entertainment), Deathbed Confessions: My Son Was a Stolen Baby (P1 Productions, Audiobook), Life is a Dream (Red Sandcastle Theatre, Toronto), Assembly Tuesdays (Social Capital Theatre, Toronto) and The Breakfast Club (Glendon Theatre, Toronto).
Jed McLoughlin, George
Jed is a London Based actor, writer and cabaret artist who trained at Kingston School of Art.
Theatre Credits: The Taming of the Shrew (Drama Imapct, 2022) ; The Polar Express Train Ride (South Devon Railway, 2021) ; Two Noble Kinsmen (The Show Must Go Online, 2021) ; Alice in Wonderland (Lights of London, 2021) ; Henry VIII (The Show Must Go Online, 2020) ; Kingston's Got Talent Cabaret (Nonsense Theatre, 2020) ; Upon The Heath (Rose Theatre, 2019) ; Season's Greetings (No Small Parts Theatre, 2018) ; Cinderella (Aggro Pantos, 2018) ; The Lower Depths (IYAF Kingston, 2017) Wuthering Heights (Theatre Royal Plymouth, 2014)
Film: Nuclear Waste (NFTS, 2021) ; SHE (Shared Human Expereince, 2020)
He is very excited to be joining the cast of Prospects and Pigeon Pie