‘The December Man’ commemorates lives lost in Polytechnique shooting


MONTREAL, December 3rd, 2019. On December 7 at 7:00pm at Dawson College Theatre, Imago Theatre in association with the Dawson College Peace Centre will present a reading of Colleen Murphy’s The December Man with a renowned Canadian creative team to commemorate the 14 lives lost in the École Polytechnique shooting and fundraise for the women’s shelter Chez Doris.

The December Man focuses on the lives of Jean Fournier, a young engineering student who witnessed the Polytechnique massacre, and his parents, Kathleen and Benoît, as they struggle to cope in the aftermath of a violent hate crime. The December Man is an intimately human story about family, courage, survival, the depths of love and the scar tissue marks of hate.

Praise for 2009 production of The December Man:

“Micheline Chevrier has assembled a dream cast, each and every one of them not only capable of, but fully prepared to, take the most miniscule elements of daily life and use them to create a compelling portrait of humanity. That the portraits thus created so heart-breakingly ordinary only adds to the power of this extraordinary work.”
The Toronto Sun 

“Touchingly honest dialogue.”
– The Gateway, Edmonton, Alberta 

“Playwright Colleen Murphy turns tragedy into powerful, emotional theatre with her post-crisis account of a school shooting.”
The Gateway, Edmonton, Alberta

Director Micheline Chevrier has invited two of the original cast members – Jeff Irving (Jean) and Brian Dooley (Benoit) – from the much celebrated past performances of The December Man (produced by Canadian Stage and the Citadel Theatre in 2009) to be a part of the reading. A decade later, the artists’ revisiting of this text is important in honouring the survivors and victims of the shooting, while being symbolic of the cyclical damage of public violence and hate crimes. Joining them is Award-winning actor Rosemary Dunsmore, playing the role of Kathleen.

The December Man boasts a creative team of Canadian theatre royalty led by Imago’s Artistic Director and the director of The December Man, Micheline Chevrier. Micheline is an award-winning director and has worked at several theatres and festivals across Canada such as the Shaw Festival, NAC, Theatre Calgary, Canadian Stage, Centaur Theatre, Manitoba Theatre Exchange and the Citadel among others. Playwright Colleen Murphy is a two- time Governor General award-winning playwright, recipient of the Enbridge Playwrights’ Award, a finalist for the Susan Blackburn Award and two-time recipient of the CBC Literary Competition. Her work has been presented across both nationally and internationally. Selected credits and awards for actor Brian Dooley include work with the CBC, BBC, and many theatres across the country; a Gemini nomination for Best Supporting Actor in the acclaimed The Boys of St. Vincent, along with three prestigious award nominations for his role in The December Man. Rosemary Dunsmore received the ACTRA Award in 2009 for Best Female Performance, as well as a Masque Award, a Dora MAvor Moore Award and an Earl Grey Award. She has also been part of five seasons at the Stratford Festival and is best known for her roles in Anne of Green Gables and The Road to Avonlea. Jeff Irving has spent 11 seasons with the Shaw Festival and has worked across Canada in theatres such as Buddies in Bad Times, Mirvish, Canstage and The Globe Theatre. The reading will also feature Canadian dramaturg and translator Maureen Labonté, former co-director of the Banff Playwrights’ Colony, and a translator for over 40 Quebec plays into English. Katey Wattam, alumni of the Black Theatre Workshop and MAI mentorship programs, will be assistant director on The December Man.

Dec. 7, 2019 at 7:00pm
The performances will take place at
Dawson Theatre
2000 Atwater St.
Get directions here.

The performance will be followed by a talkback with playwright Colleen Murphy, Director Micheline Chevrier, and the cast. Moderated by Diana Rice from the Dawson College Peace Center.

All tickets are available through a suggested $10 donation made by via Canada Helps. Debit accepted through PayPal or credit cards. All proceeds will go towards supporting Chez Doris, an organization connected to supporting women survivors of gender-based violence.
Get your ticket here

Visit www.imagotheatre.ca for more information
Find the Facebook Event for The December Man here.

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