John/Yoko Bed Piece, Dec 2009
John/Yoko Bed Piece takes the audience on a psychedelic trip back to 1969,into rooms 1738 and 1742 at the Queen Elizabeth Hotel in Montreal, where John Lennon and Yoko Ono held their historic Bed-In for Peace. Focusing on the political atmosphere of the time, the play features characters based on personalities such as Al Capp, Dick Gregory, Timothy Leary, Bobby Seale, Tommy Smothers, and Derek Taylor. Above all, John/Yoko Bed Piece is about two people using non-violent ways to protest wars and promote peace.
In keeping with draft89’s mandate to collaborate with artists in a variety of mediums, John/Yoko Bed Piece is an installation piece, which combines performance, film, music and visual arts. Part of the proceeds of the show will go towards Yoko Ono’s Dream Power Project.
Written and Directed by Risha Yorke
Original Music by Graham Porter
Set and Costume Design by Samantha Brown
Lighting Design by Mark Lavell
Production Management by Rick Talbot
Stage Management by Christine Pellerin
Assistant Stage Manager, Samantha Aylsworth
Videography by Dave Delouchery
Marketing by Darcy Hoover
Dec 16, 2009 - Jan 2, 2010
Toronto Centre for the Arts
5040 Yonge Street
Sharon is delighted to once again reprise the role of the great Yoko Ono. She’d like to especially thank the dedicated cast members who came back to join her in this second journey, and the very talented new cast. Also thanks to Risha, Christine, Todd and Graham. (And special thanks to her other half, the BMac, always). A proud graduate of the Acting Program from Montreal’s National Theatre School of Canada, Sharon’s completing her Certification for Arts Administration from NYU’s School of Continuing and Professional Studies. She will be appearing next in the comedy showcase “Wicked Love II” by The Actor’s Project NYC at the Abingdon Main Stage Theatre in New York.
Graham Porter is a composer, conductor, and performer currently living in Toronto. After a childhood studying Royal Conservatory and Anglican liturgical music, Graham studied composition at Simon Fraser University under Rodney Sharman. During this time he began collaborating with members of the theatre department as an actor, director and composer. Recent productions include The Problem (2000), Tragic Eccentrics (2001), FOE (2007), The Demise of Ordinary Objects (2008), In Short / Brief (2008) and Tell Me Another (2009).
Todd is very excited to help bring this amazing time in Canadian history to life for audiences here in Toronto. Having studied drama at Glendon College, improv with the Second City conservatory, and having had a passion for music from a young age, the John/Yoko Bed Piece is a fantastic chance to unite all of Todd’s favourite disciplines. He would like to thank Draft89, his wonderful family and friends, and most of all, his lovely and supportive wife, Sally. When not on stage, Todd is performing as an occasional teacher with the Peel District School Board.
From the tropical waters of Jamaica to the Artic winters of Canada arises a talented actor, model, singer, dancer, poet, pianist, guitarist, acrobat, recorder player, who reigns supreme over the performing arts community with modesty.
Andy is thrilled to be joining such a friendly and talented cast. Working on this show has been a tremendous experience for him and he is extremely excited to be performing in it. Selected credits include A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Hart House Theatre), The Goodbye Rounds (Toronto Fringe), Taming of The Dude (Rose Theatre) and Lion in the Streets (Ryerson Theatre School). Andy would like to thank the cast and crew for all their hard work.
Tarah is an actress based in both Toronto and Los Angeles. She is one of the originating members of the Canadian Stage Company’s GYM program where she has shared the stage with some of Canadian theatre’s elite artists. She has also been a member of the Second City National Touring Company where she developed and performed in The Best of Second City, Abbreviation Nation, and Big Bad Wolf. Film and television credits include: Dan for Mayor (CTV), The Ron James Show (CBC), Howie Do It starring Howie Mandel (NBC), Plastic Makes Perfect (Slice), Run Robot Run!, Train48 (Global), ZooZoo (BBC Kids), as well as lending her voice to such animated series as Best Ed (Cartoon Network), and Superwhy! (PBS Kids). Most recently, she’s the voice of Butch Butane on the upcoming prime-time Teletoon series, Crash Canyon. Her theatre credits include: the critically acclaimed Canadian premier of Mikel Rouse’s Dennis Cleveland (LuminaTO), John/Yoko Bed Piece (Draft89), Goodnight Amherst (Teatro Comunque), The Vagina Monologues (VDay), Taking Chance (London Fringe), Tony n’ Tina’s Wedding (Second City), The GRRRLZ Show and One Night Only (Bad Dog Theatre). Upcoming: Feature Film Running Mates, where she stars alongside Henry Winkler, Graham Greene and DJ Qualls.
In this vdeo segement from the show, 1960s social activist Jerry Rubin speaks about the need for revolution.
Mark is undulating with excitement over this incredible show. Thanks to my family and my wonderful friends for coming to support us and for generally existing, and to Risha, Graham, and the rest of the cast for being a continual source of inspiration and creative energy. Stay in bed! Grow your hair! Hi, Mom. Hi, Natalie. :)
Geoff Hendry is a Toronto-based actor, writer, comedian and producer. Recently, he can be seen in “Word On the Street” for OMNI Television and “Ghostly Encounters” for the W Network. He has co-written several plays for the Feast Dinner Theatre in Prince Edward Island, and performs regularly as both a sketch and stand up comedian across Canada. He delighted to be reprising his role as Rabbi Feinberg in “John Yoko Bed Piece”.
Caitlin Morris-Cornfield is a creator/performer who completed her training in theatre performance at Humber College in 2006, and is currently delving into the world of circus, training on Ariel silks and dancing on stilts. She is a founding member of the Kadozuke Kollektif, a Toronto-based company that develops and produces large-scale experimental work rooted in classical themes. Selected past credits include: The Children`s Hour, and A Midsummer Nights Dream (Upper Canadian Repertory Company), The Blackheart Princess (Sunnyleo), The Land of I Told You So, Dog Days, The Emperors New Clothes and The Man in the Moon (Shrimp Magnet), Gaggle (Hysteria Festival 09) The Nightwood (Back Burner/Luminato Festival 09), The Gulliver Project, The Sandman, and Figaro, His Marriage and the Fine Art of Dressmaking (Kadozuke Kollektif – creator/performer). Upcoming work: Codex Nocturno (Kadozuke, August 2010) and The Bird (Union8/Buddies in Bad Times, Jan 2011).
Michael O'Hara is happy to be joining the cast of John/Yoko Bed Piece for this remount. Michael has been working for the past 3 summers as part of The Festival Players of Prince Edward County, with his most favourite role being Hank Williams, in "Hank Williams: The Show He Never Gave". Personal career highlights: singing onstage with Patti LaBelle at the Molson Amphitheater, and singing "My Girl" with The Funk Brothers, the legendary Motown house band. Love to family and friends.
Monica is honoured to be part of John/Yoko Bed Piece in its second run. She would like to thank the cast, crew and production team for their talent and hard work! Lots of love to her family and friends for their constant support! Peace and love.
Thomas Patrice provides the voice of comedian and activist Dick Gregory in a recreation of his visit with John Lennon.
For draft89: debut. Elsewhere: A Midsummer Night’s Dream and A Streetcar Named Desire with the Upper Canada Repertory Company, Charlotte’s Web and A Boy’s Own Jedi Handbook East Coast Tour with Theatre New Brunswick and Taming of the Shrew with the Brampton Flower City Theatre Festival. Next on the agenda for Trevor is the role of Doctor Joseph Cardin in The Children’s Hour with the UCRC and a workshop of Troilus and Cressida.’
In this clip from the show, Black Panther leader Bobby Seale speaks at a rally.
Jane Smyth is thrilled to be performing at the Toronto Centre for the Arts for the first time. Past performances include: Mother of Two in FOE (draft89), Andromache in Troilus and Cressica (Hart House/PLS), Constance/Bear in Bluffer's Moon (Cliff Hang Productions), and Mrs.Smith in The Bald Soprano (Tantramar Theatre). As a member of the collective, Jane has acted, production managed and directed for draft89. Thanks go to draft89, our cast, crew, the TAC, and you, who make the whole thing worthwhile.
Alexandra is delighted to be playing a hippie in the John/Yoko Bed Piece. She was last seen as ensemble in Hart House Theatre's recent remount of Jerry Springer the Opera. Other credits include Heidi/Freddie in Smile (Randolph Academy) Doctor # 5 in Killing Game (Randolph Academy) Audrey in Little Shop of Horrors (LCVI), and Minnie in West Side Story. Alexandra is a recent graduate of the Randolph Academy for the Performing Arts.
Margaret Thompson is a graduate of The Central School of Speech and Drama (London, UK) and Concordia University’s BFA Theatre Performance program. Selected credits include Iphigenia in Iphigenia at her Funeral (Alumnae Theatre), Rosalind in As You Like It (Shakespeare in the Square), Cassandra in The Trojan Women (Canopy Theatre Company), Juliet in Romeo & Juliet (by Alexander Marine of the Moscow Art Theatre) and Joyce in Possible Worlds (Mountview Theatre London, UK). Margaret would like to thank her friends & family for their untiring support of her work over the past year.
Selected Theatre Credits: (in short), a one woman show (Draft 89), Jerry Springer the Opera (Hart House Theatre), Beauty and the Beast (SACT), Pride and Prejudice (Grant MacEwan Theatre), Footloose (SACT). Selected Directing Credits: The Lies We Tell Ourselves and Other People (Revolution Productions), Dear Edwina (The Bravo Academy of Performing Arts), The Wiz (SACT), Snoopy the Musical (SACT). "Identification of the human mind with the field which is infinitely unified in itself—that is the formula for world peace.” - Maharishi Mahesh Yogi
Devin Upham is reprising his role of cartoonist Al Capp. He is a versatile actor, performing anywhere from improv comedy to psychological horror. Devin has his Masters in Drama from UofT and has trained with the Second City Conservatory Program. Devin is a founding member of Doppelganger sketch comedy, and Winchester: Mind Over Body side show, where he performs feats of pain resistance and fire eating.
Jan Yorke & Mike Fairfield
Toronto Centre for the Arts