Opening Night Recap: Mary Walsh’s ‘Dancing with Rage’ at the Firehall Arts Centre

This past Wednesday night the Firehall Arts Centre was home to a packed house for the opening night performance of Mary Walsh’s one-woman show, Dancing with Rage, co-presented by Touchstone Theatre and the Firehall Arts Centre. Prior to the show the lobby was a buzz with people excited to see Mary, with many stories being shared among patrons of any times they had seen Mary Walsh in person or of course about her many various TV shows and characters. For many it seemed so unlikely that they would get to see Walsh in person, and to an certain extent, this show has had to deal with some unlikely things. After it premièred in 2012 in the storied LSPU (Longshoreman’s Protective Union) Hall in St. John’s Dancing with Rage was supposed to open in Toronto at at Theatre Passe Muraille. However she ended up being hospitalized with a case of bronchitis. After that she ended up being in a car accident with a Toronto cab crashing into her and leaving her with broken ribs. The run was cancelled. As the show made its way to Vancouver, on its tour of western Canada it was set to play a single night in Edmonton, and the set ended up going missing. No stranger to adversity, Walsh’s took to the stage and delivered an evening full of raucous laughter, with sharp barbs being mixed with an engaging narrative as she moved from one character to the next with perfection. A 90 minute showcase of one of Canada’s most talented performers. After the show finished (to a standing ovation) the excitement and energy poured out of the theatre and into the main lobby of the Firehall for a special post-show reception. There audience members shared more laughter well sampling the wonderful array of food provided by East of Main Cafe. Mary came out soon afterwards to meet some of the enthusiastic audience members sharing plenty of stories and laughs.  Here are a couple of shots from the reception. Check out the full gallery on our Facebook page here. Photos by Kerry Rae Photography.

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