Separation and collaboration

Photo courtesy Spark Theatre.

Emma Anderson

Herald Contributor

When asked about acting, Karen Langlois smiles and responds “That’s my fun, that’s what I really love to do.”

Spark Theatre has cast Langlois to take on the role of Marg in the final Spark Theatre Production of the season: Marg Szkaluba (Pissy’s Wife).

Speaking with actor Karen Langlois and director Ian Dickson, one gets the feeling there is something particularly special about this play, despite its theme of separation, it has been built on a foundation of collaboration and partnership.

The play is the second time that Spark Theatre has partnered with the Mann Art Gallery for their final production of the season.

“I think it’s one of the biggest benefits of having this collaboration between the Mann Art Gallery and Spark Theatre … the awareness that the gallery is paying to the context of the shows that we’re bringing” says Dickson.

This is Dickson’s first time as lead Director for Spark Theatre and he is enthusiastic about it.

“It’s just such an important story,” he said.

The one-woman play centers on the story of Marg as she recounts her past, from the present.

She has been in an abusive relationship, but no longer; the audience meets her for the first time in a bar as the singer of the band.

When the audience greeted Marg on opening night yesterdy, they were entertained with decades of acting and musical talent.

Mike Langlois, Darcy Sander and Gary Johnson, provide the music for the show, playing guitar, drums and bass guitar, respectively.

Thinking about the music in the play, Karen Langlois said that it’s “something you are not going to get that often”.

When speaking of her role as Marg, the actress reveals perhaps a bit of what has kept her engaged in theatre for the past twenty years – its ability to tell stories that matter.

“I think it’s a story that’s very timeless because yeah that idea of having sort of that rough upbringing, getting into a bad marriage, not knowing it, having to get out of it … just keeps happening over and over, and I think it’s really important that we keep telling people, ‘it does happen, it doesn’t matter who you are or how much money you have, or whatever.’

“We have to keep telling people that ‘this does happen and you can get out.’ And I think that’s the most important part of Marg is that she does get out.”

Tickets for Marg Szkaluba (Pissy’s Wife) can be purchased from the E.A. Rawlinson Centre Box Office.

The play opened Thursday night and it runs today and tomorrow, with doors at 7 p.m. at the Mann Art Gallery.