Slings and Arrows

Slings and Arrows
a kate west favorite

For those of you who consider a good time is reciting Shakespeare to each other, consider renting the Canadian homage to the Bard, "Slings and Arrows". Actually, whether or not you're a passionate actor, if you've ever cringed through bad productions of Shakespeare, you will love the exploits of this Canadian troupe of classic actors. The creators really do understand Shakespeare. Now on DVD, this popular television series (which only had a three season run) is once again a hit with audiences.

Geoffrey Tennant (Paul Gross) becomes the Artistic Director of the fictional New Burbage when the previous AD Oliver Welles (Stephen Ouimette) dies unexpectedly. He then has to maintain order amidst gigantic actor egos, financial nightmares and his own pending breakdown. Not to mention dealing with pesky ghost of Oliver. One true-to-life scene is when (slightly) over-the-hill leading lady Ellen Fanshaw (Martha Burns) is audited and becomes infuriated with a bureaucracy she can't understand. She is an actress after all, and shouldn't have to deal with numbers, for God's Sake.

The glimpses of productions of "Hamlet", "Macbeth", "King Lear" and "Romeo and Juliet" are really inspirational, since this company is supposedly expert at Bard productions. It's a much-needed quality show, with all the comedic angst and subterfuge of a regular sitcom, just a little classier. And it's very nice to see good Shakespeare for a change. Don't miss it.

Series Directed by:
Peter Wellington (18 episodes, 2003-2006)

Series Writing Credits:
Susan Coyne (18 episodes, 2003-2006)
Tecca Crosby (18 episodes, 2003-2006)
Bob Martin (18 episodes, 2003-2006)
Mark McKinney (18 episodes, 2003-2006)
Sean Reycraft (6 episodes, 2006)

Series Cast:
Martha Burns ... Ellen Fanshaw
Paul Gross ... Geoffrey Tennant
Don McKellar ... Darren Nichols
Mark McKinney ... Richard Smith-Jones
Oliver Dennis ... Jerry
Susan Coyne ... Anna Conroy
Stephen Ouimette ... Oliver Welles
Graham Harley ... Cyril
Michael Polley ... Frank
Catherine Fitch ... Maria
Leon Pownall ... Brian
Sean Cullen ... Basil
Matt Fitzgerald ... Sloan
Rachel McAdams ... Kate McNab
Luke Kirby ... Jack Crew
Jennifer Irwin ... Holly Day
Sabrina Grdevich ... Claire Donner
Marcia Bennett ... May Silverstone
Rothaford Gray ... Nahum
Aaron Abrams ... Paul
Joanne Kelly ... Sarah
Janet Bailey ... Barabra
William Hutt ... Charles
David Alpay ... Patrick
Colm Feore ... Sanjay
Grace Lynn Kung ... Emily Lu
Geraint Wyn Davies ... Henry Breedlove
Melanie Merkosky ... Megan
Sarah Polley ... Sophie
Jonathan Crombie ... Lionel Train
Joanne Boland ... Margaret
Chris Leavins ... Andrew McTeague
Brendan Murray ... Horatio
John Stead ... John
Jefferson Brown ... Chris Norton
Bob Martin ... Terry
Damir Andrei ... Polonius
Jeff Berg ... Luke
Caroline Gillis ... Cheryl
Billy MacLellan ... Laertes
Martin Roach ... Horatio
Clyde Whitham ... Alan

The First Season:
Slings & Arrows - Season 1

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