TFS Stage Production of ‘The Dead’ Breathes New Life into James Joyce’s 1914 Tale 

The Dead poster

Toronto Film School acting students will revive a classic James Joyce tale later this month, when their adaptation of The Dead hits the stage at the Papermill Theatre.

Adapted and directed by Aaron Willis, the 75-minute play breathes new life into Joyce’s exploration of love, loss and the nature of Irish identity, which was first published in his 1914 collection, The Dubliners.

The story is set in Dublin, Ireland in 1904, and takes place during a holiday party on Jan. 6 – the twelfth and final day of the Christmas season.

“It’s a holiday gathering like so many others; with family, with friends, and with all of the unspoken drama that rises to the surface when we come together during this time of year…” Willis explained.

The Dead Play Poster
Artwork by Colton J. Strong

“When we’re sitting around the holiday table, it’s hard to keep from thinking about who among us is no longer here, and who among us may not be here at this time next year,” he added.

“Instead of banishing those thoughts, what if we opened our ears to try and hear the voices that have passed on into that other world? If the dead whispered their secrets to us, what might we hear them say? And what gifts – or epiphanies – might they offer us?”

The Dead, which is stage managed by Obi D’Meano, will take to the stage at the Papermill Theatre for a three-performance run on Dec. 21, 22 and 23 as follows:

  • Thursday, Dec. 21 at 7 p.m.
  • Friday, Dec. 22 at 9 p.m.
  • Saturday, Dec. 23 at 11 a.m.

The Papermill Theatre is located at Todmorden Mills, 67 Pottery Rd. Tickets are free and available at the door.

The Creative Team Behind The Government Inspector:

Aaron Willis

Aaron Willis – Director

Obi D'Meano

Obi D’Meano – Stage Manager

Sierra-Leanor Andrade

Sierra-Leanor Andrade as Miss O’Callaghan

Kalifa Bitter

Kalifa Bitter as Aunt Julia Morkan

Brandon Boucher

Brandon Boucher as Mr. Bergin, Michael Furey

Michael Anthony Cannone

Michael Anthony Cannone as Mr. Kerrigan, Hotel Porter

Gabriela Diaz Cano

Gabriela Diaz Cano as Aunt Kate Morkan

Nam Huynh

Nam Huynh as Mr. Grace, Cab Driver 2

Jessica Judith

Jessica Judith as Mary Jane Morkman

Melina Joseph

Melina Joseph as Miss Furlong

Avery Knoll

Avery Knoll as Gretta Conroy

Damon G. Macht

Damon G. Macht as Freddy Malins

Sebastian Hernandez Reza

Sebastian Hernández Reza as Bartell D’Arcy

Julianne Roche

Julianne Roche as Lily, Molly Ivors

Cobourn Sands

Cobourn Sands as Gabriel Conroy

Angela Schottoff

Angela Schottroff as Miss Higgins

Logan Standing

Logan Standing as Mr. Duffy, Cab Driver 1

Denanh Tran

Denanh Tran as Mr. Browne

Elisa Wier

Elisa Wier as Miss Daly, Mrs. Malins

Cynthia Reason

Cynthia Reason (she/her) is a former newspaper journalist turned communications professional who currently works as Toronto Film School’s Manager of Communications. Prior to joining TFS, she spent 13 years working as a reporter for Torstar/Metroland Media Toronto, writing for publications including, the Etobicoke Guardian, and the Toronto Star, among others. Her byline has also appeared in the National Post. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Guelph and Post-Graduate Diploma in Journalism from Humber College.


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