100 Years from Now
Collingwood War Musical Returns to Simcoe Street Theatre
What will they think of us?
That’s the question asked by the characters of “100 Years from Now”, the original musical written by Collingwood’s Shipyard Kitchen Party band.
In “100 Years from Now”, two Collingwood brothers and the women they love tell the story of their triumphs and tragedies in the years surrounding World War I. As the MacIntyre brothers, their mother and Duntroon nursing sister, Mae Belle Sampson, exchange correspondence about their experiences, they tell the story of Canada’s participation in the great conflict that would change the country forever.
The show runs on November 8 to 10 at the Simcoe Street Theatre with daily matinees at 2 pm on Saturday and Sunday and evening shows on Friday and Saturday at 8 pm.
Accompanied by an original folk music score by the Shipyard Kitchen Party and archival imagery from the war period, the event is a musical journey from Georgian Bay to Vimy Ridge and beyond. The show debuted in Collingwood two years ago. It has since been selected for the juried showcase at the Ontario Contact Festival and has won the Robert G. Kemp award from the Blue Mountain Foundation for the Arts.
Tenor Craig Ashton stars as Frank MacIntyre, while Julie LeBlanc plays the role of his mother, Margaret. The show was written by Collingwood resident Jason Murphy, who, together with Shipyard Kitchen Party colleague John Eaton, also created the show’s music. Vocalist Sacha Law and multi-instrumentalist John Miller round out the cast of musicians.
“The Canada we know today was fundamentally shaped a century ago by the Great War,” says Murphy.
“Our show aims to tell that story in a new and deeply personal way, including by highlighting the critical contributions of women both on the battlefield and the home front.”
Of particular importance to the cast is the storyline about real life heroine, Mae Belle Sampson of Duntroon. Sampson was one of the first women to enlist in the Canadian Army Medical Corp at the war’s outbreak. She served until her tragic death near the war’s end in 1918. Many relatives of Sampson still live in South Georgian Bay today.
“Mae Belle’s story really inspired us,” says Murphy. “We’re hopeful that our show will help preserve her story for the next generation.”