A good chunk of Marnie Perrin’s year is spent creating a festival for children in Surrey, but her latest project has her focusing on the other end of the age spectrum.
She is the creator and producer of View From a Window, a play that “seeks to connect the generations through an exploration of the myths, realities and joys of growing older.”
The touring show, staged in Surrey on the afternoon of Thursday, Oct. 10, is the latest phase of a multi-year Seniors Create Project, which collected stories from seniors about life in today’s go-go, youth-centric world.
“When I was a theatre grad,” Perrin explained, “I did a show with seniors that toured elder-care facilities and I fell in love with seniors, their wisdom, and promised to do a show involving seniors in the future, and the timing for that was now.”
At its heart, View From a Window asks if we are ignoring the seniors of our society, said Perrin, who in 2016 began collecting stories from seniors – including one 104 years of age – on audio tape to create a script, with the help of Natasha Nadir and Gina Stockdale.
“The learning I’ve gained, I’m so proud be part of this project,” said Perrin.
“This is scripted, not storytelling, and each of the characters has a very full narrative with beginning, middle and end,” she added.
On a “mini tour” of Metro Vancouver this month, Stockdale will act alongside Bernard Cuffling, Yvonne Adalian and Tom Pickett, in a one-act play for audiences of all ages.
Following project-launch performances last year, Perrin said “the biggest feedback we got was that younger people need to see this play,” and a tour was organized.
“It’s for seniors and also everyone who hopes to be a senior, age 16 and up,” she said. “It’s a snippet of life lived as seniors right now. Seniors appreciate it because they get their stories told in an honest way, and there are lots of nodding of heads in the audience. But it’s also for younger audiences, to get that perspective. My hope is people take their family members to see this.”
The show’s current tour includes an Oct. 10 date at Surrey City Hall’s Centre Stage theatre, starting at 2 p.m. Show tickets range from $17 to $22 via tickets.surrey.ca, or call 604-501-5566.
Tour and other show details are posted to seniorscreate.wordpress.com.