BLACK COMEDY THE DANCE OF DEATH BEGINS PREVIEWS AT THE SHAW, First August Strindberg work to be seen at the Festival in almost 30 years

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First August Strindberg work to be seen at the Festival in almost 30 years

Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON (July 12, 2016) — The Dance of Death, August Strindberg’s groundbreaking play in a new version by renowned Irish playwright Conor McPherson, begins previews on July 13 at the Shaw Festival’s Studio Theatre. Under the direction of acclaimed actor/director Martha Henry, this deliciously sardonic look at the endless “dance” that is marriage features a trio of The Shaw’s most accomplished actors – Jim Mezon, Fiona Reid and Patrick Galligan.

Isolated on an island in a reclaimed fortress, Edgar (Jim Mezon), a tyrannical army captain, and his wife Alice (Fiona Reid), a former actress, relish their well-honed verbal sparring. Over the course of a quarter-century together, they have perfected the art of tormenting each other – instinctively knowing where to prod to provoke the most satisfying reaction. When Alice’s cousin Kurt (Patrick Galligan) appears for an unexpected visit, they quickly draw him into their intimate game.

Designer William Schmuck’s glorious domestic arena provides the perfect forum for these martial war games. Lighting design by Louise Guinand and original music and sound design by James Smith heighten the inescapability of the proceedings.

The Dance of Death is on stage at the Studio Theatre (10 Queen’s Parade, Niagara-on-the-Lake) from July 13 to September 10 (opening July 23).

This Shaw Festival production is sponsored by Paradigm Capital Inc.

Casting (in alphabetical order):

Landon Doak
Patrick Galligan
Jim Mezon
Fiona Reid

Creative & Production:

Martha Henry
William Schmuck
Louise Guinand
James Smith
Allan Teichman
Leigh McClymont
Lighting Designer
Composer & Sound Designer
Stage Manager
Assistant Stage Manager

The Shaw Festival’s 2016 season is on stage April 9 through October 30. The playbill features Alice in Wonderland, A Woman of No Importance, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, Uncle Vanya, “Master Harold” …and the Boys, The Adventures of the Black Girl in Her Search for God, Our Town, Mrs Warren’s Profession, Engaged, and The Dance of Death. Tickets for the Shaw Festival’s 2016 Season are available through the Box Office at 1-800-511-7429 or online at


About the Shaw Festival

The Shaw Festival is a theatre company inspired by the work of Bernard Shaw. The Festival produces plays from and about his era along with contemporary plays that share Shaw’s provocative exploration of society and celebration of humanity.


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