Shaw Festival at Niagara-on-the-Lake
What do you think of when you think of Niagara? If you live outside Canada probably not George Bernard Shaw. More likely a lot of water, tightropes and barrels. But Canadians know that Niagara doesn't just have a waterfall but wineries, the prettiest village in the country and a top-class theatrical festival. I've wanted to come to the Shaw Festival at Niagara-on-the-Lake since I emigrated to Canada five years ago but somehow have only just made it. I'm not disappointed.
Eight shows in four days is our aim and we've notched up four so far. But instead of driving to a theatre and braving city traffic we are in a village where the show ends with a stroll home in the balmy evening heat. Tonight a fellow walker on our tree-lined street asked us what we'd seen. We raved about the musical The Light in the Piazza and he left us with a "Oh I'm glad you liked it. I'm seeing it in two weeks."
It really is a uniquely Canadian experience - this much good theatre crammed into such a tiny village. Tonight we loved Patty Jamieson for her moving performance as Margaret Johnson and show-stealer Jeff Irving as Fabrizio Naccarelli. Just a few hours earlier we watched Lady Windermere's Fan, the Oscar Wilde classic with lines such as "I can resist everything but temptation" . The tale of Victorian morals was enhanced with some clever use of music, extra Wilde quotes and an amazing shrinking-stage effect.
|Our B&B : 340 Gate|
|The locals seem to have a lot of style|
|Scone testing at the Irish Tea Room|
|More acting - this time on the main street.|