We present a wide range of children’s programming, music, cabaret, poetry, dance, dinner and show packages, staged and full cast readings of new plays and works-in-progress. Join us!
Click on Show Titles for Synposes, Biographies and Photographs!

  • Eins, zwei, drei, Boum!
    Friday May 17, 8 p.m. @ Factory163
    Mary Pitt & David Warrack- A fun Cabaret in three languages; Un cabaret excentrique en trois langues; Ein lustiges Kabarett in drei Sprachen.
  • Gabaret  with Gabi Epstein
    Saturday May 18, 10 p.m. @ Factory163
    Named “Top Cabaret Act of 2012” by the Times Square Chronicles, Gabi Epstein tells stories of love, loss, success, and failure (but mostly success) through song. Often poignant but always funny, Gabi will show you a true cabaret performance!

Children’s Fun- up to 7 years old ♥

  • Razzmatazz for Kids
    Saturday May 11, 10 a.m. @ Stratford City Hall Auditorium  &
    Saturday May 18, 10 a.m. @ Factory163
    This show will get you hugging someone you love, clucking like a chicken, riding a bumpy bus, or performing on stage with them. Their interactive children’s music has won many awards, including an East Coast Music Award for “Children’s Recording of the Year”.


  • ONEymoon (A honeymoon for one)–  Comedy Show @The Church Restaurant
    Danna Nicole Fashion Show & Dinner
    Friday May 10, 8 p.m. Fashion Show & Dinner with ONEymoon at 9:30 p.m.- Enjoy the whole experience or ONEymoon only!
    A “solo” comedy about a woman who marries herself. Don’t miss the hit touring show created & performed by Christel Bartelse. 2011 Canadian Comedy Award nominee “Best One Person Show”… “A human fireball” See magazine.***** (Victoria Times Columnist)

    ONEymoon Christel Bartelse Comedy  Danna Nicole

  • Significant Me-
    Saturday May 11, 4 p.m. @ Stratford City Hall Auditorium
    Creator of ONEymoon & award winning performer returns with the continuation of her unique premise. Meet or (rejoin) Caroline Bierman, three years later after her marriage- to herself. A comedy about the pursuit of the “perfect” relationship. “Wildly funny, ultimately touching journey toward self-discovery” ***** Hamilton Spectator… “rare originality and theatrical zest” ***** Edmonton Journal

Dance  dance star

    • The Pixie Project and Waves
      Friday May 17, 6 p.m. & Saturday May 18, 4 p.m. @ Factory163
      The Pixie Project: Pixies! Two of these vicious, amoral, fun-loving beasts to take you on a ride of mini manic mayhem toward a cataclysmic collision with Human Fate.
      Waves: A spectacle of imagination and athletic dance erupts from employees trapped in their 5×5 office cubicles, nine to five work-days, and the need to escape.

    • The Animals (and other stories about Fate)
      Thursday May 16, 10 p.m. & Sunday May 19, 6 p.m. @ Factory163 

      Lucy Rupert and Blue Ceiling Dance: Wild, brutal, animal instinct evolves from a sleek dark urban world in two solo dances united on a theme of fate. “like an orchid blossoming in a bed of forget-me-nots. It is hard to take your eyes off her” *****Toronto Star

Dinner & Shows @ The Church Restaurant dinner iconComedy 

Comedy Comedy

  • ONEymoon (A honeymoon for one)–  Comedy Show @The Church Restaurant Danna Nicole Fashion Show & Dinner
    Friday May 10, 8 p.m. Fashion Show & Dinner with ONEymoon at 9:30 p.m.- Enjoy the whole experience or ONEymoon only
    A “solo” comedy about a woman who marries herself. Don’t miss the hit touring show created & performed by Christel Bartelse. 2011 Canadian Comedy Award nominee “Best One Person Show”… “A human fireball” See magazine.***** (Victoria Times Columnist

    Danna Nicole

    Dine while being entertained with the latest fashions from Danna Nicole. With colour blocking, vibrant prints, and leading designers you will be sure to be inspired for any occasion this spring and summer!

    Music and Text  songs and text

  • Kate Ashby-Craft & Gail Selkirk Retrospective Concert & Dinner @The Church Restaurant
    Saturday May 18, Dinner at 8 p.m. followed by a concert at 9:30 p.m.- Enjoy both or Show only!
    Award nominated singer/songwriter Kate Ashby-Craft takes you on a musical journey through three decades of her original music. Songs include: pop, rock, country and folk, plus behind the scenes stories of the various recordings. The multi-talented Gail Selkirk is on piano.


  • Sandy Greenberg Concert & Dinner @The Church Restaurant
    Friday May 17, Dinner at 8 p.m. followed by a Concert at 9:30 p.m.- Enjoy both or Show only!
    With her “Joan Baez-like alto”, finger-picking and flat-picking her vintage Martin guitar, Sandy performs folk and blues songs, poignant and funny, old and new.

Music and Text  songs and text

    • Festival Gems II
      Sunday May 12, 10 a.m. with coffee/tea & “crumpets” & Sunday May 12, 8 p.m. @ Stratford City Hall Auditorium
      Brad Rudy, Marion Day, Christina Gordon, and Eileen Smith share original songs and text commissioned for the Stratford Festival over its illustrious history.

    • Three Little Maids: Musical Revue
      Thursday May 9, 8 p.m. @ Stratford City Hall Auditorium &
      Sunday May 19, 8 p.m. @ Factory163
      Starring Barbara Dunn-Prosser, Debora Joy, and Janet Martin! “Everything is a source of fun” as these three soprano friends follow the path of their performing careers in a potpourri of classical, musical theatre, and popular songs.

Theatre: Young Audience- Family 

  • Fairy Tale Ending: The Big Bad Family Musical
    Thursday May 9, 6 p.m. @ Stratford City Hall Auditorium &
    Thursday May 16, 6 p.m. Friday May 17, 10 a.m.  & Saturday May 18, 2 p.m. @ Factory163
    Join Jill as a “line up” of characters is questioned about the sudden changes occurring in their fairy tales. A topsy-turvy yet touching tale of a young girl coming to grips with loss and the reality of growing up. With catchy songs like “I, like, totally don’t even give a care” and “You don’t know Jack”.

Theatre at SpringWorks

Theatre: Plays and Staged Play Readings   new play reading

  • Confessions of a Fairy’s Daughter
    Thursday May 16, 8 p.m. & Sunday May 19, 2 p.m. @ Factory163
    Alison Wearing’s true story of growing up with a gay father. Balancing intimacy, history and downright hilarity, this fascinating story is a celebration of love.

  • Forgiving Peter Pan
    Sunday May 12, 2 p.m. @ Stratford City Hall Auditorium  &
    Tuesday May 14, 8 p.m. @ Factory163
    An adaptation of JM Barrie’s haunting novel, by Marion Adler and Scott Wentworth whose award winning work has been produced in the West End and off Broadway.

  • I Was Born
    Saturday May 11, 2 p.m. & Sunday May 12, 2 p.m. @ Stratford Perth Museum
    Masks and storytelling to share the stories of ordinary women who began their lives at the turn of the century in rural Ontario; extraordinary women who lived through some of the most dramatic changes of any generation.

  • Judith
    Friday May 10, 6 p.m. & Saturday May 11, 12 noon @ Stratford City Hall Auditorium & Friday May 17, 2 p.m. @ Factory163
    Inspired by Judith, the award-winning Canadian novel: a brawling, passionate play about hope, fears and courage, with live music and many pigs. (Suitable 16+).

  • Salome’s Clothes
    Saturday May 11, 2 p.m. @ Stratford City Hall Auditorium
    A family saga that speaks to globalized crisis. Are we trading our children’s future for worthless trinkets?

  • Stories About Storytellers
    Saturday May 11, 8p.m. @ Stratford City Hall Auditorium
    An Evening with Douglas Gibson…and Many Famous Canadian Authors
    Alice Munro, Robertson Davies, Alistair MacLeod, Pierre Trudeau… the 21 fascinating friends the famous editor will bring alive on stage tonight!

  • The Hush Baby
    Sunday May 12, 12 noon, @ Stratford City Hall Auditorium
    Tuesday May 14, 6 p.m. & Wednesday May 15, 8 p.m. @ Factory163
    1 baby. 2 many regrets. 3 robin eggs before sunset or else…a new play about magic, mothering & loss.

  • The Maples Leaves
    Wednesday May 15, 6 p.m.  & Saturday May 18, 12 noon @ Factory163
    1917. The Western Front. New recruit Billy Haven arrives eager to kill his first Hun. Instead, he’s ordered to put on a dress and sing. Suddenly one of the Maple Leaves, a group of men who perform for the troops to boost morale, Billy must determine where his duty truly lies.

  • On the Other Side of The World
    Monday May 13, 6 p.m. & Saturday May 18, 8 p.m. @ Factory163
    By the late 1930’s Europe sat on the brink of another World War. As Hitler’s power strengthened Countries closed their doors to the thousands of refugees trying to flee their homeland. Over thirty thousand Jewish people fled to the only open port available to them- Shanghai.

  • The Blue God
    Sunday May 19, noon @ Factory163
    After the death of his son, Clive Nation, descends into the Underworld. He is pursued by his wife, Janine,  who hopes to retrieve him, his boy and their relationship. But will her sacrifice save their love? The Blue God is a romance of Painting, Love, Voodoo and Resurrection.

  • The Tank Range Project
    Friday, May 10, 8 p.m. @ Stratford City Hall Auditorium &
    Tuesday, May 14, 2 p.m. @ Factory163
    A ghost reveals the historic truths about an Ontario farm community expelled from their homes to make way for a World War II training base.

  • Third Person
    Wednesday May 15, 10 p.m.  & Sunday May 19, 4 p.m. @ Factory163
    Stratford Playwright and Director Brandon Wicke’s one-act play explores fate and free will, as two inquisitive travellers, George and Byron, are goaded by sinister and mysterious writings claiming knowledge of what lies at the roots of human motivation.

  • This is How We Got To Here
    Friday May 10, 10 a.m. @ Stratford City Hall Auditorium  &
    Saturday May 18, 6 p.m. @ Factory163
    Author of The Hours That Remain, Keith Barker, brings his new play about family, loss, alternatives and hope.

  • Without Whom
    Friday May 10, noon, Saturday May 11, 6 p.m.  & Sunday May 12, 4 p.m. @ Stratford City Hall Auditorium
    What happens when we leave this life? Does the world go on without us? What if we could make death wait…even for a little while?

Spoken Word-
SpringWorks Coffeehouse Poetry @ Revel Caffe (FREE performances here)

  • Charles Mountford- 
    The Thing on the Comb
    Saturday May 11, 7 p.m. @ Revel Caffe
    Part humour, part poetry and part memoir.

  • Elizabeth Zetlin
    Gardens and Fields, Grandkids and Groundhogs
    Thursday May 9, 7 p.m. @ Revel Caffe
    Liz Zetlin’s poems celebrate the human community, passionate and compassionate, magical, ordinary, surreal. An award winning poet and filmmaker, she was Owen Sound’s inaugural poet laureate.
  • Roy Lewis and Graham Hargrove-
    Haiku and other Poetry
    Friday May 10, 7 p.m. and Sunday May 12, 7 p.m. @ Revel Caffe

@ City Hall Auditorium

  • Stories About Storytellers
    Saturday May 11, 8 p.m.@ Stratford City Hall Auditorium
    An Evening with Douglas Gibson…and Many Famous Canadian Authors
    Alice Munro, Robertson Davies, Alistair MacLeod, Pierre Trudeau…  just some of  the 21 fascinating friends the famous editor will bring alive on stage tonight!

Visual Arts

  • North Perth Arts and Culture Council in Listowel


Recent Posts

Confessions of a Fairy’s Daughter by Alison Wearing: Interview

Confessions of a Fairy’s Daughter by Alison Wearing: Interview

Being a gay dad in the early ’80s was a big deal. So was having one
By:  Feature Writer, Published on Thu May 09 2013

Interview with author Alison Wearing about her memoir, Confessions of a Fairy’s Daughter, about growing up with a dad who came out of the closet in the 1970’s when she was 12.

The moment of truth arrived on an ordinary day in the kitchen of an unremarkable red brick house in small-town Ontario.

It was 33 years ago and Alison Wearing was 12. She remembers the ugly beige linoleum with brown squiggles, and her toes curling around the rail of the stool as she watched her mother unload cereal bowls from the dishwasher that never quite got the dishes clean.

“There are a lot of things about Dad that you don’t know,” her mother said, as she lifted out the cutlery basket.

Something about the word “gay” hung in the air amid the clink-clink of knives and forks.

Then the crushing realization that the world as she knew it had just ended.

That moment and the family’s long journey from turmoil to acceptance comes to vivid life in Wearing’s new memoir, Confessions of a Fairy’s Daughter, released this week.Alison Wearing's memoir, Confessions of a Fairy's Daughter, about growing up with a dad who came out of the closet in the 1970s, is out this week.    Alison Wearing's Confessions of a Fairy's Daughter, Knopf, 304 pages, $24    Alison Wearing with her dad, Joseph, in 1982.

These were the days long before the phrase “same-sex marriage” made headlines or gay couples appeared on sitcoms. People actually used the word “fairy.” Toronto Pride Week hadn’t yet launched. And the thought of an openly gay premier was about as out-of-this-world as The Jetsons.

The only thing young Alison knew about “gay” was that it was Very Bad News. Something to do with boys kissing other boys. In other words, gross. And pretty much the worst thing that could happen.

So as her father, Joe, came out in his 40s, his daughter went underground. He left their Peterborough home and spent most of his time in Toronto. She and her two brothers visited on weekends, relished his gourmet meals, Gilbert and Sullivan operettas and eccentric circle of friends. But back home, she became a storyteller and an actor whenever people asked about him.

“My life in theatre started then, I had to create,” says Wearing, now 45.

“All these questions would come at me. I had to invent on-the-spot stories about my life that would be acceptable.”

Years later, those same skills have come full circle. Now she’s used them to tell the truth. And she’s done it in an engaging and poignant account of her family’s experience, which happened to parallel gay liberation in Canada.

The story, she soon discovered, is much more than the one she set out to tell.

“It’s not just about having a gay father. It’s about seeing your parent as a person, having what you think of as an imperfect family and dealing with it,” she says.

“It’s about what happens when someone in your life is not the person you thought they were. How do we embrace that and accept them and grow through that?”

That middle-class red brick house offered up all the key ingredients: secrecy, longing, conflict, acceptance, love, laughter and a rollicking cast of characters.

Joseph, now 77, was a politics professor who gave his preschoolers bonus minutes in the bath if they could recite the names of every prime minister. He was also an amateur musician who rolled out pastry for croissants on weekends, and then conducted an imaginary orchestra to the blaring Verdi “Requiem” while they baked.

There was her marathon-runner mother who preferred nourishing her kids with piano playing. And two brothers who showed creative genius when it came to tormenting their sister.

It was a story that practically told itself, first as a 30-page script for her one-woman stage production that premiered in 2011, and now as a full memoir.

Cocooned in the turret of her neighbour’s house in Stratford day after day, the memories poured out “and I’d have to race to keep up with it.”

Her own part was finished in a couple of months. But she knew there was more to tell. She went to get an opinion from her dad, who lives in Toronto with the partner he’s been with for 30 years.

He disappeared to the basement and came back with a box he hadn’t opened for three decades. Inside were clippings and scribbled diaries full of more details than she ever wanted to know.

“Instantly I knew, here’s the rest of the book right here.”

Now she had a way to tell the other side of the story in her father’s voice. And it’s a compelling one, as Joe Wearing grapples with his conflicting desires and tries to come to terms with living as both a gay man and a doting father.

Despite mixed feelings of having his personal life made public, he had seen his daughter’s stage version and believed in her work.

“He said ‘I don’t want to meddle. You’re in the driver’s seat. You use whatever you feel you need,’ ” recalls Alison.

Before the book was even out, Wearing started hearing from people who had gone through similar experiences or were facing them now. This week, she and her dad are attending a meeting of Gay Fathers of Toronto, a support group they were among the first to join years ago.

There’s one more story she wants to share that didn’t make the book. It’s about her own son, Noah, who at 13 is just around the age she was that day on the kitchen stool.

Not long ago, one of his buddies was over and spotted the mock-up of her book cover.

“Oh wow, is that your mom’s book?” he asked.

“Yeah it’s about her dad. My grandfather’s gay,” replied Noah. Then off they went to the kitchen to see what was in the fridge. Just like that.

“That was a beautiful moment,” says Wearing. “Here we are one generation later and he just tosses that one off and then says ‘what do you want to eat?’

“I would never ever, ever have imagined that would have been possible in my lifetime.

  1. Thank You Toronto Star! Leave a reply
  2. Setting Up For SpringWorks @ Stratford City Hall Auditorium! Leave a reply
  3. Stratford’s Alison Wearing pens memoir Leave a reply
  4. The Beacon Herald Tells SpringWorks’ Story! Leave a reply