Terry Pamplin brings Harry Veiner to life, the tall, generous and gregarious former mayor of Medicine Hat. Legendary unofficial mayors like Yellowknife's Margaret Thrasher are also given voice during the performance.
The Tale of a Town brought Yellowknife stories to the NACC stage Saturday and asked big questions about the future of communities forever changed by big box stores and development.
The performance was the culmination of creators Lisa Marie DiLiberto and Charles Ketchabaw’s three year tour of downtowns across Canada. The multimedia show took the audience on a journey
into the heart of Yellowknife, including main street life eaten away by big box stores, Indigenous memories of the time before the towns even existed, 11 cent ice cream cones and the harsh realities of homelessness and violence.
The Tale of a Town brought to life official and popular history told through interviews with residents. As the interviews played, managing director Charles Ketchabaw created tiny town scenes filmed and broadcast onto a giant screen. Local actors along with the Ursa Miners chamber choir took to the stage to sing and perform original numbers, accompanied by Casey Koyczan and Andrea Bettger. The audience was sprayed with silly string and asked about their fondest downtown memories, creatively breaking down the fourth wall between the stage and the viewers.
Residents who want to hear more histories of their downtown including hamburgers sold out of house windows, moose caught by the outcrop where the post office now sits and 50 Street’s rowdy past, can find interviews from Yellowknife and other stops of the story-mobile on The Tale of a Town website.