Theatre: Swallows And Amazons

Gallery 7 Theatre Celebrates Imagination with Canadian Premier of Arthur Ransome Classic

This March, Gallery 7 Theatre of Abbotsford is inviting adventurers of all ages to join in on the fun as they present the Canadian premier of Arthur Ransome’s classic tale, Swallows and Amazons, adapted for the stage by Helen Edmundson with music by Neil Hannon.

“Families are in for a real treat,” says Gallery 7 Theatre’s artistic director, Ken Hildebrandt. “People of all ages will delight in the exploits of the Swallows as they seek adventure on the high lake waters of northwest England. It’s a great way to celebrate the arrival of spring and a perfect spring-break activity for the entire family!”

When John, Susan, Titty and Roger are granted their wish to camp on an island, they eagerly look forward to a summer full of adventure and fun. Fueled by their imagination and a desire for new experiences, they set sail in their trusty boat, Swallow. When they meet Nancy & Peggy, the self-proclaimed Amazon pirates, and the cantankerous Captain Flint, their adventure turns in an entirely new and exciting direction.

“Based on Ransome’s classic stories for young people and set in the Lake District of northwest England during the 1920’s, Swallows and Amazons celebrates the importance of imagination and creativity,” explains Hildebrandt, who is also directing the show. “Our entire production is built around this central idea. We’ve employed some clever theatrical devices to recreate some of the central props and we’re using live Foley for the sound effects. The result should be a super-fun and engaging theatre experience for everyone.”

While the play’s central characters are children, they will be played by a talented team of adult performers from across the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley. Emily Talma, last seen as Luisa in The Fantasticks, plays Titty Walker while Adriel Brandt takes on the role of John Walker, the eldest brother. Their younger siblings, Susan and Roger are played by Bethany Caldwell and Michael McIntyre respectively while Hazel Godley and Elizabeth Seaman play the roles of the spirited Amazon pirates, Nancy and Susan Blackett. The cantankerous but misunderstood Captain Flint is played by Glen Pinchin, who last played Morrie in Gallery 7’s production of Tuesdays with Morrie. Rounding out the cast are Kaile Khonje, Mark Klausen, Forest Shuster and Tim Warkentin.

Hildebrandt has directed numerous productions for Gallery 7 Theatre including The Diary of Anne Frank, The Importance of Being Earnest and the award-wining Driving Miss Daisy. He is supported by a talented team of design artists: musical direction is by Tony Funk, choreography is by Andrea Loewen, set & lighting design is by Jay Havens, costume design is by Catrina Jackson and sound design is by Charlene Crawford. The stage manager is Kenzie Hall and the production photographer is Dianna Lewis of Creative Memory Studio.

“Swallows and Amazons is more than just a fun-filled children’s story,” concludes Hildebrandt. “It transcends age and encourages both young and old to re-engage their imaginations, to seek healthy adventures that inspire joy and lift us out of mundane, everyday living. What a great way to welcome spring, the season of new life.”

Swallows and Amazons runs March 8 & 9, 14 – 16, 21 – 23, 2013 @ 7:30 PM with additional discounted matinees on March 9, 16 & 23 @ 2:00 PM at the MEI Auditorium, 4081 Clearbrook Road, Abbotsford. Tickets for evening performances are $20 Adults, $18 Seniors and Students, $17 Groups (8+) and $12.00 Children (12 & under). Matinee performances are $15 General and $12.00 Children. They can be purchased at the House of James, 2743 Emerson Street, Abbotsford or by calling 604-852-3701 or 1-800-665-8828. To order tickets online, or for more information about the show and Gallery 7 Theatre, please visit

Swallows and Amazons
March 8 & 9, 14 – 16, 21 – 23, 2013 @ 7:30 PM
Matinees: March 9, 16 & 23 @ 2:00 PM

Special rates available for groups of 8 (eight) or more!
Performance Venue
MEI Theatre
4081 Clearbrook Road, Abbotsford, B.C.

Box Office Information
House of James
2743 Emerson Street, Abbotsford

Store Hours: Monday to Saturday, 9:00 AM – 9:00 PM
Phone Orders: 604-852-3701 or 1-800-665-8828 (Have VISA or Master Card ready)
Tickets are also available online at

Ticket Prices
$20.00 Adults, $18.00 Seniors & Students, $17.00 Groups (8+), $12 Children (12 & under)

Gallery 7 Theatre Website

Photo: (left to right) Bethany Caldwell, Michael McIntyre, Adriel Brandt and Emily Talma perform in Gallery 7 Theatre’s production of Swallows and Amazons, Photo by Dianna Lewis, Creative Memory Studios.

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