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live theatre for A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline

live theatre for A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline

Magnus Theatre Staging Live Outdoor Show in Waverley Park

THUNDER BAY, ONTARIO  ~~~~ August 22, 2020 (LSN)  Thunder Bay (August 21, 2020) – Magnus Theatre is welcoming back audiences to experience the joys of live theatre for A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline. Magnus is one of the first regional theatres in Canada to be staging a full run of a professional production since the gradual lifting of public gathering restrictions began this summer. The show will feature a talented cast of all local performers taking to the outdoor stage.  

While September has always marked the start of a new programming season for most theatres across Canada, this year is noticeably different. Limits on public gatherings and other initiatives to protect public health in the wake of a global pandemic means most theatres have had to stay closed, or to reimagine their seasons.

Magnus Theatre has consulted with the Thunder Bay District Health Unit and the City of Thunder Bay to map out its capacity for live performances and will be following all provincial guidelines in an effort to protect the safety of patrons, volunteers, staff, and actors.

“When we got the news that we would be able to have performances outside for audiences of up to 100 people, I knew that A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline would be the perfect show under these conditions,” says Magnus Theatre Artistic Director Thom Currie, who is also directing the play.

A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline will be staged in Waverley Park, in the open air adjacent to Magnus Theatre’s auditorium. The musical will run for 12 performances over two weeks. Audience capacity will be limited to 100 people per performance. Patrons will be seated in household/social “bubbles,” distanced at least two meters apart. There will be one entrance and one exit point, and Magnus Theatre will be encouraging ticketholders to wear masks in a further effort to promote public safety. 

This year’s production will be the third time that Magnus has staged A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline. The widely popular show is written by Dean Regan and previously ran at Magnus in 1992 and 2012. Set during a radio broadcast celebrating Cline’s rise to stardom, radio DJ Little Big Man guides the audience from Cline’s humble beginnings as a country singer playing honky-tonks in her native Virginia to achieving pop music level stardom and performing at the legendary Carnegie Hall in New York City.

“One of the reasons I chose this show is that it could be cast with 100% Thunder Bay talent,” Currie continues.  “Not only do we have an award-winning Patsy Cline, but the entire band from the 2012 Magnus production is available to reunite for this special production.”

Thunder Bay based actor and singer Amy Sellors hits the Magnus stage as Patsy Cline.  Sellors is one of the few performers approved by the Patsy Cline estate to portray this legend of country music, which she has done to great acclaim across the country, notably in record breaking productions at the Globe Theatre in Regina and the Stephenville Theatre Festival in Newfoundland. Thunder Bay native Andrew Cecon stars as radio DJ Little Big Man. No stranger to the Magnus stage, Cecon has previously appeared in Bang Bang and Miracle on 34th Street.

Local music legend Danny Johnson is back at Magnus as the production’s Musical Director and playing piano in the band. Danny performed this role at Magnus in the 2012 production of the play. The band members are returning players also - Martin Blanchet on bass, Rob Jardine on pedal steel guitar, Chris Plater on drums, and Dan Zadkovich on guitar.

A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline is a touching theatrical musical experience that delivers over 20 timeless songs and promises to delight audiences with its roster of brilliant local performers.

A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline runs at Magnus in the Park from September 3rd to September 13th. Showtimes are 7:00 pm, with 2:00 pm matinees on Saturday and Sunday.  Tickets go on sale on August 25th at $40 each and are available online at www.magnustheatre.com or by phoning the Box Office at 807.345.5552. This is a licensed event and beverage services will be provided. Patrons are asked to bring their own lawn chairs to the event.

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