A Forest Jubilee

cape breton highlands

Kersti Tacreiter brings the Atlantic Fringe Festival A Forest Jubilee from The Parks Canada Agency in Ingonish, Nova Scotia. This storytelling and poetry performance has been created for use in the Cape Breton Highlands National Park as a celebration of their forests and to show tourists the natural beauty of their parks. Within the Fringe Festival context A Forest Jubilee still brings a homey, gentle charm, but is missing the urgency needed to connect its message ardently to the public.

Tacreiter has written a lovely lyrical ode to nature here but as a performance piece it is a bit like staging Lucy Maud Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables, but without her characters or the plot. We are left with beautiful phrases evoking lovely pictures, but theatrically they don’t take us anywhere. Tacreiter talks a lot about various stories but rarely actually tells them to us. I found myself wanting to know about our protagonist, Rose, who invites us into her house and serves us tea. Who is the first person to call her home a halfway house? What impact does this person have on Rose? Who is the girl who runs barefoot through the forest and why does she not wear shoes? Why is she running? From where or whom? To where or whom? Did she ever meet the person who first called Rose’s home a halfway house? What happened next?

I think this piece also could have benefited from a director to give it shape and motivation. I think that an experienced director/dramaturge would benefit Tacreiter immensely in helping to transition a show like this one from the park into a theatre. I certainly think there are stories in Tacreiter that are begging to be told.   

*As a bonus, though, the show does have delicious tea and fresh apples!*

A Forest Jubilee runs at DanSpace (1531 Grafton Street) as part of the Atlantic Fringe Festival at the following times: It is $6.00

Saturday September 3rd, 7:00pm

Sunday, September 4th, 3:30pm

Monday, September 5th, 3:00pm

To book advanced tickets please visit Neptune Theatre’s Box Office, 1593 Argyle Street or call 902.429.7070 or visit www.atlanticfringe.ca.

Same Day Sales are available at the venue (Neptune Studio Theatre) From 1 Hour Before the First Show of the Day.

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