MAINSTAGE Engaged

About the Play

Written by W. S. Gilbert​
Directed by Jeannette Lambermont-Morey*​
A Farcical Comedy in Three Acts.

“… a whimsical, satirical, exquisitely humorous extravaganza.” ​

(The Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News, 1877)​

Offering witty social commentary on the state of love and marriage, William Gilbert’s absurdist burlesque farce appeals to our cynical 21st century taste for satire. This mock-heroic play exposes the sham and pretension of a society where the motive for marriage is always money. Entangled in a legal quibble, the characters manoeuvre their way toward their financial goals with delicious efficiency. Having inspired Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest and GB Shaw’s Arms and the Man and Man and Superman, Gilbert’s play stands tall in English theatrical history. 

DIRECTED BY Jeannette Lambermont-Morey*

A photo of director Jeannette Lambermont-Morey

​Jeannette Lambermont-Morey has directed for theatres across Canada and the United States, including 8 seasons at the Stratford Festival. She was Artistic Director of the New World Theatre Project (now Perchance) in 2012/13, served as Executive Director of the Shakespeare Globe Centre of Canada from 1999 to 2015, and is currently Artistic & Managing Director of Xchange Theatre Works in St. John’s. 

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Jeannette has worked extensively in college and university theatre programs as a director and instructor, including the Juilliard School in NY, and has directed the annual Period Study at George Brown Theatre School in Toronto for the last 20 years. Jeannette is passionate about new work and, as a dramaturge, has developed a number of works including an adaptation of Goethe’s Faust with music by Leslie Arden, several independent new musicals with YES Theatre (Sudbury), and numerous plays by up-and-coming Canadian and American writers in various stages of development. ​

 

Creatives

Michael Panich
Michael Panich*, Stage Manager

George Brown Theatre School: The Corsican Complaint, Love & Information, The Witch of Edmonton, Three Sisters & Co, Metamorphoses, Planet Munsch, You Never Can Tell, Munsch Goes to School, Munsch-o-Mania, Munsch All Over, A Midsummer Night’s Dream.  Elsewhere: Suddenly Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Shakespeare in Action), The Rainbow Fish, Stella-Queen of the Snow (Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia), Stories from Ovid’s Metamorphoses (Theatre Smith-Gilmour), The Hound of the Baskervilles (Lighthouse Festival Theatre), Canada in Love, Remember that Song, The Legend of Dan McGrew (Smile Theatre). Michael graduated from Concordia University’s theatre program in 2008. In addition to stage managing, Michael is also a production manager, actor and set/light designer.  

 

Jackie Chau
JACKIE CHAU, SET & PROPERTIES DESIGN

Jackie has worked as a set and costume designer and her work has toured internationally. In addition, she is a production designer and art director for film and television. Selected theatre design credits include: Sexy Laundry (Theatre Aquarius) Annie Mae’s Movement, Almighty Voice and His Wife, Tombs of the Vanishing Indian, From Thine Eyes, HUFF (NEPA), Antigone Insurgency, Talking Masks, Charge of the Expormidable Moose, Ubu Mayor, S/W (One Little Goat), Gas Girls (New Harlem Productions), Romeo and Juliet (TD Dream in High Park/Can Stage), Zadie's Shoes, Lady Sunrise (Factory Theatre), Brown Balls (Fu-Gen), The Swearing Jar (Prairie Theatre Exchange), Fish Eyes Trilogy (GCTC), Canada 300 (Watermark Theatre), Cannibal the Musical (Starvox Entertainment),Twist Your Dickens (Second City Chicago/Toronto), Mini Me Makeover – Designer and Co-host (CBC Kids/Expect Theatre), Moment, Dissidents, Oil (ARC Theatre), Cowboy Versus Samurai, 39 Steps, Oraltorio (Soulpepper) and The Komagata Maru Incident (Stratford Festival). Jackie was named in NOW magazine's Top 10 Theatre Artists of 2009, nominated for the Virginia and Myrtle Cooper Award in Costume Design, nominated for a Saskatoon Area Theatre (SAT) award, 2 Broadway World awards and has received 8 Dora nominations for outstanding set and costume design. This is Jackie's 14th year designing for the George Brown Theatre.

 

Ina Kerklaan
Ina Kerklaan, COSTUME DESIGN

Ina is delighted to be designing costumes for Engaged for the 4th time with George Brown. Ina is educated in both Fashion Design through Ryerson Polytechnic University and Costume Cutting through Red Deer College in Alberta. Ina has worked primarily as a cutter and stitcher in theatre wardrobe since 1999. She has worked with The Banff Centre, The Citadel Theatre, Mirvish Productions, The National Ballet Company, the Canadian Opera Company, Soulpepper Theatre Company, The Canadian Stage Company and Young People’s Theatre Company.  Ina joined the George Brown Theatre School in the Fall of 2013 as the Head of Wardrobe.

 

Photo of Siobahn Sleath
SIOBHÁN SLEATH, LIGHTING DESIGN

Siobhán is happy to be back at George Brown Theatre to design Engaged. She’s also worked with the School on 3 Sisters & Co.,The Learned Ladies, Caucasian Chalk Circle, Machinal, Calvalcade, Lady Windermere’s Fan and three Munsch Shows.

Other recent shows include: Ann (Arkansas Rep Theatre);The Horse and His Boy,Wilde Tales (Shaw Festival); Miracle on 34thStreet, A Year with Frog and Toad, Shrek and The Addams Family (Neptune Theatre); Steel City Gangster andOn a First Name Basis (Theatre Aquarius);Les Liaisons Dangereuses and Avenue Q (Sudbury Theatre Centre; and Elegies: A Song Cycle (Acting Up Stage). She is the Associate Lighting Designer on the Canadian production of Come from Away.  

More information can be found on her website: www.siobhansleathdesign.com

 

Steafan Hannigan
STEAFAN HANNIGAN, VIDEO DESIGN

Steafan was born and raised in Belfast, Northern Ireland and moved to Canada nearly 12 years ago with his wife Saskia and 3 children Oisin, Eile and Ayisha.

He has a background in theatre and has held many interesting positions: Technical Director, Musical Director, Head of Props, Head Carpenter, Lighting Designer, Sound Designer, and actor. Previously he worked as a Technical Director for many companies including Jumblies Theatre, Education Arts Canada and Festival Players.

He has also had an interesting career as a musician having composed the music for a 24-episode animated series which aired worldwide in 2015, worked with a diverse range such as Bjork, Depeche Mode, Loreena McKennitt and AfroCelts He has also appeared on MTV, BBC and CBC. Along with his wife Saskia, he was hired to work on developing the hit theatre show “Come from Away”.

And yes rumours are true, he arranged music for and appeared on the hit T.V. series “Friends” – the one with Ross’s wedding, acted in Canadian show “Coppers” and been a session musician on “Black Harbour”, “Relic Hunter ” and “Earth Final Conflict”.

He has played or produced over 200 albums, toured in over 30 countries and still has a recording studio and a collection of over 800 musical instruments. He is an author of “The Bodhran Book” and “The Low Whistle Book” both best sellers in their genre. He and his family also formed a band called Clan Hannigan

He regularly volunteers for ArtsCan Circle, working with Indigenous communities in Northern Ontario, specializing in working with the Pikanjikum First Nation and Project Journey.

 

Stephan Ermel
Stefan Ermel, Musical Director

Stephan Ermel is the vocal music instructor for George Brown and a music director, musician, actor and educator. He is the Resident Music Director of YES Theatre in Sudbury, a graduate of the George Brown Theatre School, and holds an Associate Diploma from the Royal Conservatory of Music.

George Brown: Planet Munsch; Talk is Free: Mahagonny Songspiel; Hart House: Legally Blonde; YES Theatre: James and the Giant Peach, Mamma Mia, The Sound of Music, Merrily We Roll Along, Violet, Beauty and the Beast,

 

Cast

Photo of Aaron Clapperton
Aaron Conrad Clapperton - Major McGillicuddy

Aaron Conrad Clapperton (he/him) is a gay multidisciplinary theatre artist, specializing in acting, dance/ physical theatre, and creation. His personal and artistic philosophy is always joy, compassion, and fulfillment! Aaron’s passion for live performance is inspired by musical theatre, political theatre, queer theatre, surrealism, and movement storytelling. GBTS Scene Study: Dunois in Saint Joan; Playwright in An Octoroon; Simon in Scorched. Elsewhere: Performer in The Classical Theatre Slam (Hart House Theatre); Snake in The Trouble with the Garden (New Ideas Festival); Male Ensemble Swing in The Producers (The LOT).

Photo of Lucy Ellis
Lucy Ellis - Maggie

Lucy is thrilled to be given the emotional challenge of playing Maggie in this production of Engaged!

Her favourite roles at George Brown include The Countess in Marriage of Figaro and Blanche in Widower’s Houses. Alongside three years of training at GBTS, Lucy has also done courses on classical and contemporary performance at Stratford and Shaw, and in London at RADA, and LAMDA. She also recently appeared as Irene Robbins on Murdoch Mysteries. Lucy has been playing piano since she was six, and especially loves classical and jazz standards. In her spare time, she also sings, composes, and posts the music she makes on her youtube channel.

 

Photo of Rashaun Ellis
Rashaun James Ellis - Cheviot Hill

Rashaun James Ellis is a Third year student who’s excited to be taking part in telling this incredible story. He hopes you enjoy the show!

 

Photo of Nate Iwanochko
Nate Iwanochko - Belvawney

Nate Iwanochko (he/him) is a multidisciplinary artist who is resoundingly excited to be part of the George Brown Graduating Class of 2022. Before attending George Brown he spent 2 years attending York University in their Devised Theatre Program and brings that same mindset of collaborative creativity to his work here at the school. Nate likes to spend time enjoying his favourite TV Series’, going for adventures with his dog and spending quality time with friends; including the never ending impromptu comedic routines with friends that bring people together.

When outside of the theatre, Nate loves to get lost in spending time at his home studio playing with sound design, experimenting with and creating soundscapes as well as hybrid orchestral “mock ups”. He also loves creating characters that come from all walks of life through the endless possibilities he finds with recording his own voice acting. Nate hopes you enjoy the show and have as much fun enjoying it as we, the ensemble, did bring it to life!

Photo of Naomi Jijina
Naomi Jijina - Mrs. MacFarlane

Naomi Jijina (she/her) is a Persian-Canadian multidisciplinary actress and performer based in Milton, Ontario. Growing up, Naomi enjoyed participating in performance classes, workshops, and showcases including the International Presentation of Performers in Los Angeles, California. As a child, Naomi dreamed of becoming a performer and was determined to one day share her stories with the world, on stage and screen.

Naomi is looking forward to playing the role of Per Gint in George Brown Theatre School’s production of Per Gint: A Sort- of- Adaptation of Peer Gynt, directed by Eva Barrie. She also looks forward to portraying Mrs. MacFarlane in W.S Gilbert’s Engaged, directed by Jeannette Lambermont-Morey.

Naomi’s favourite GBTS Scene Study credits include: Jennifer Dubedat in The Doctor's Dilemma; Lady Wishfort in The Way of the World; Janine in Scorched. During her GBTS training, Naomi had the pleasure of working alongside directors such as Jeannette Lambermont-Morey, Kwaku Okyere, Ali Momen, Aaron Willis, Sue Miner, and Eva Barrie. In her free time, Naomi enjoys dancing carefree around her house, painting, playing with her dog Zeus, and spending time with her loving family.

Photo of Billy Keefer
Billy Keefer - Angus Macalister

Billy made his first debut in Oshawa Little Theatre’s production of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest during the winter of 2019 and continued to pursue his career in theatre working as an actor and stage manager for 2 years at Theatre On The Ridge, working on productions such as Wind in the Willows & Peter Pan. Billy is currently cultivating his own art dipped in surrealist and absurdist themes and now tries his hand in classical theatre having played the lead role of Mirabell in The Way Of The World during his second year Period Study and now in this year’s production of Cymbeline as part of his classical theatre training.

Grace Lamarche
Grace Lamarche - Parker / Train Passenger

Grace is thrilled to be part of the GBTS 2022 season. Her favourite roles played during her time at GBTS include Millamant in William Congreve’s Way of the World and Gloria from George Bernard Shaw’s You Never Can Tell. She is excited to utilize her final year of theatre school to focus on building her skills/exploring the universe of directing and playwrighting and would like to give a special thanks to her mother, who continues to inspire her creative work every day.

Photo of Eōin J. Leahy
Eōin J. Leahy - Musician / Guest / Waiter

Eōin J. Leahy is a mixed (Indian-Canadian), queer artist from Sault Ste. Marie, currently in his third and final year at George Brown Theatre School. He has played notable roles such as Cherubino in The Marriage of Figaro, and Simon in Scorched, and has also had the opportunity to create and direct projects, like an adaptation of Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book, and That Sweet, Thin Line - an original Dadaism piece showcased during the Third Year Test Piece. Eōin’s goal as an artist is to help tell stories- through acting, through writing, through directing, and everything in between.

Photo of Sophie Lefebvre
Sofie Lefebvre - Musician / Guest

Sofie Lefebvre (She/Her) is a queer actor, singer, and dancer from Toronto Ontario. Sofie’s highlight GBTS scene study credits include Mrs. Higgins in Pygmalion (dir. James Simon); Zoe in An Octoroon (dir. Kwaku Okyere); Foible in The Way of the World (dir. Jeannette Lambermont-Morey). Other highlighted productions include Purgatory, a short thriller film releasing this October. Sofie has been acting since she was thirteen years old when she was cast as Tinker Bellin her school's production of Peter Pan. In her spare time Sofie enjoys sewing, painting her nails, reading, and dancing like nobody’s watching.

 

Photo of Mya Leworthy
Mya Leworthy - Belinda Trehearne

Mya Leworthy is excited to help bring Per Gint and Engaged to the stage alongside the class of GBTS22. Some of her favourite roles over the past two years have been Susanne in the Marriage of Figaro, and Eliza Doolittle in Pygmalion. She hopes to see you in the audience. 

Photo of Julian Murphy
Julian Murphy - Mr. Symperson

Julian Murphy is an actor with a long standing love of the theatre. He has come a long way from the community theatre pantomimes he once performed in, and is excited for what the future beyond school holds. He is a stage combatant with a passion for martial arts from around the world, and throughout history; from Muay Thai and Jiujitsu, to longsword and rapier. Julian is also a writer and musician, where he channels his creative drive when it isn't occupied by the theatre. Julian is honoured to work with such engaging artists, and looks forward to the opportunity to create more art as an ensemble.

 

Photo of Sullivan Nash
Sullivan Nash - Musician / Guest

Proudly born and raised in Toronto, Sullivan is honoured to be a part of the GBTS 2022 graduating class, alongside fellow actors and creators. After developing a love for theatre and acting at a young age, Sullivan performed in Le Petit Prince and La Crèche in high school before studying at George Brown College. George Brown scene study credits include: William de Burgh Cokane in Widower’s Houses, Captain Robert de Baudricourt in Saint Joan, Rolly in Criminal Genius, The Count in The Marriage of Figaro. Sullivan would like to thank his friends and family who have supported him throughout his journey thus far.

 

Photo of Katie Pearson
Katie Pearson - Musician / Guest

Katie is thrilled to perform at George Brown. Some of their previous work includes Legally Blonde and the Who’s Tommy; both produced by Brock Musical Theatre. Katie has their Bachelor of Arts for Women and Gender Studies from Brock University, and their love for the stage brought them to George Brown where they have had the privilege to play characters like Dierdra in Dreary and Izzy, and Emmy in Shaw’s The Doctor's Dilemma. 

Photo of Marijke Reinink
Marijke Reinink - Minnie / Train Passenger

Marijke Reinink is a Toronto born multidisciplinary artist. Throughout her training she has focused on acting, singing and dancing and choreography. Theatre highlights include Vivian in Legally Blonde, Wendla in Spring Awakening and Veronica in Heather. George Brown acting highlights include Vivie Warren in Mrs. Warren’s Profession, Dido in An African Cargo and Gina in Office Hours. For all their support, Marijke sends all her love and appreciation to her wonderful family and friends, especially those she’s made along the way at George Brown.

 

Credits & Acknowledgements

Production Staff​

  • Properties Master: David Hoekstra
  • Assistant Stage Manager - Sarah Flanigan
  • Streaming Tech Coordinator: Steafan Hannigan
  • Set Carpenter: Andy DeVries
  • Set Painter: Paul Boddum
  • Wardrobe Assistant: Jennifer Jakob
  • Stitcher: Victoria Banjavcic ​
  • Fight Director/Movement Coach: Jack Rennie​
  • Choreographer: Bob McCollum
  • Voice Coach: Christina Pastor​
  • Speech Coach: Geoffrey Pounsett​
  • Alexander Technique Coach: Victoria Heart
  • Dramaturgical Consultant: Sturla Alvsvåg
  • Musical Director/Vocal Coach: Stephan Ermel​​
  • Social Media Coordinator:​​ Naomi Jijina

Staff for George Brown Theatre

  • Chair: Trent Scherer​​
  • Program Coordinator: Sue Miner​​
  • Support Coordinator: Michael Longstaff​​
  • Production Manager/Technical Director: Scott Banks​
  • Assistant Technical Director: Andrei Mamal
  • Head of Wardrobe: Ina Kerklaan

Special thanks to our generous donors​

  • The William & Nona Heaslip Foundation  
  • Sonja Koerner and the Women’s Art Association  
  • Loretta Bogert-O’Brien  
  • Esther Farlinger  
  • Larry LaForet  
  • Audrey J. Murdoch  
  • Ray Wares  
  • Lu-Ju Chou
  • George Brown Seniors’ Association  
  • Cindy Larable
  • Debbie Read 

Thank you to our friends in the community​

  • Corey MacVicar, and Soulpepper Theatre Company, Megan Woods

*The participation of these Artists is arranged by permission of the Canadian Actors’ Equity Association under the provisions of the Dance.Opera.Theatre Policy (DOT).​