Agwa, God of Water (Finn Dahlstrom), laughs with fellow gods Papa Ge (Milo McDonald), Asaka (Cienna Charania), and Erzulie (Yukari Stevenson) when Ti Moune (Maia Cassie) prays for the love of a boy. (QMS photo)

Love conquers all, in dramatic style, in Duncan’s Queen Margaret’s School show

It was a risk to take on such a challenging show but the cast are up for it: director Tilly Lorence

More than 30 enthusiastic Queen Margaret’s School students are eager to present Once on This Island Jr. at the school’s Fine Arts Hall on May 16.

It’s a special tale that has been waiting to be told, according to QMS communications manager Hayley Picard.

“For generations, stories have been passed down to teach valuable lessons about life, love, pain, and hope,” she said. “Few do this better than Once On This Island Jr., the simple tale of Ti Moune, the peasant girl whose love for a boy from the wealthy side of the island takes her on a journey through all of life’s experiences and more, ultimately proving that the power of love is greater than prejudice, fear, and even death.”

When you consider that this subject matter is being tackled by intermediate and middle school age students, you have to stand back in awe.

Director Tilly Lorence admits that selecting the style of a sung-through musical such as Once on This Island Jr., was a risk, but one she was ready to take with the right cast.

“Since I began teaching theatre 15 years ago, I have waited for the right group of young actors to perform this challenging play,” she said. “This is an advanced musical for children in Grades 4–7 as it has many working components and the cast is large — with over 30 actors and crew!”

With a story that puts a microscope on the topics of discrimination, racism, and social class segregation, Once On This Island Jr. is more relevant today than ever.

“The deeper messages of redemption through love, provides us with hope for the future,” shares Lorence. “Once On This Island Jr. reminds us how community can truly come together through story.”

Evening performances on May 15–16 are already sold out, but tickets are still available for the 3:30 p.m. performance on May 16. Contact QMS atreception@qms.bc.ca or 250-746-4185 to see if they can fit you in.

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