Tough and Sassy Fundraiser

The closing play of this year’s Gabriola Theatre Festival, Light Sensitive, is also a fundraiser for Nanaimo’s Western Edge Theatre. “I think we may be one of the only theatre companies that raises money to put on plays by putting on plays,” says Western Edge artistic director Frank Moher, who directs Light Sensitive. “It’s just crazy enough to work.”

Written by American playwright and comedian Jim Geoghan, Light Sensitive is a tough and sassy comedy-drama about three unforgettable New Yorkers. Tom is a former photographer and cab driver, now blind and co-habiting with a scotch bottle in his shabby apartment. Lou is his boisterous buddy from the corner pub, who’s been taking care of Tom but now has plans to move to Vermont. So he brings over Edna — no-nonsense, Upper East Side Edna — to take his place, and soon Tom’s dark days are numbered. But what will he do when he finds out there’s something about Edna that Lou hasn’t told him?

Light Sensitive is a bracing play about courage and beating the odds. Says the Los Angeles Times: “Geoghan brings his audience to its feet cheering.” The play is produced under the aegis of Island Theatre, Western Edge’s fundraising arm. Its cast — veteran area actors Lorna McLellan, Mort Paul, and Vincent Wells — have all generously donated their time for the production, which allows the proceeds to be used for the company’s other work.

“We produce it under the Island Theatre name to distinguish it from Western Edge’s regular shows, for which artists are paid,” says Moher. “But for audiences, it’s pretty much all the same. Either way, they can expect a lively production.” Light Sensitive plays Sunday, August 22, 2010, at 7 pm in the Festival Tent next to Folklife Village on Gabriola Island. Tickets cost $17, on sale at Gabriola Artworks and online at http://gabriolatheatrefestival.ca. Package tickets for the Festival, running August 20 through 22, 2010, are also available.