Ready to bring the hijinks of Norm Foster's Jonas and Barry in the Home to the rivercity Stage beginning May 5-15 are cast members (Clockwise from back): Kelly Senko (Rosie), Dick Poulton (Jonas) and Dennis Hawkins-Bogle (Barry). Photo by Alistair Taylor

Hijinks and hilarity abound In Rivercity Player’s production of Jonas and Barry in the Home

Norm Foster’s witty and and poignant look at aging opens May 5

Rivercity Players’ next production, Jonas and Barry in the Home, brings together three unique individuals and asks them to collaborate on a work of performance art.

“A play is very much a mashing together of a group of creative individuals and seeing what comes out of it,” said director Alistair Taylor. “Each actor has their own style, their own strengths and you can’t perfectly predict what will result from their collective efforts. You can have a general idea and as director, you try to guide them in a general ‘direction’ – as they say – but the final product is very much a composition unique to this particular group of people.”

Jonas and Barry in the Home, written by Norm Foster, opens May 5 at the Rivercity Stage on 1080 Hemlock St. and runs May 6, 7, 12, 13, 14 at 7:30 p.m. and May 7, 8, 14 and 15 at 2 p.m. The story involves the curmudgeonly Barry Butterfield who checks into a senior’s home hoping to while away his golden years in peace under the care of his daughter Rosie only to have that peace disrupted by the arrival on the scene of the loquacious and adventurous Jonas. Jonas leads his new friend on a series of hijinks and adventures while Barry works on repairing his relationship with his daughter.

Playing the grumpy Barry is Dennis Hawkins-Bogle whom you may have seen in Rivercity Players’ fall production of Kayak.

“I am enjoying the challenge of learning to portray a 67-year-old curmudgeon,” Hawkins-Bogle said. “Although a comedy, this play explores family dynamics, break-ups, friendship, aging, illness, and death.”

Hawkins-Bogle said he is enjoying working with a creative team of actors, a director, and other theatre artists. He sees his character as a cranky old man grappling with challenges and life situations that many of us encounter, regardless of our age.

“My character ‘falls’ into an ‘abyss’ and through awareness and encouragement, changes his life to become more engaged and active,” Hawkins-Bogle said.

Arriving to lead Barry astray is the lively Jonas, played by Dick Poulton. Before Poulton relocated to Campbell River, he and his wife Dee were very active in the theatre scene in the Lower Mainland, and had most-recently written and produced a second night of sketch comedy called Saving BBC, a comedy show combining both classic and original British sketches.

In Jonas and Barry, Poulton enjoys “Developing camaraderie with fellow respected actors. This is a very clever and well written show that is a delight to work on.”

“Jonas is a pleaser,” Poulton said. “He spends his time trying to help Barry and Rosie. This act helps him discover the importance of family and friends.”

Rounding out the stellar cast is an actor Campbell River theatre-goers are becoming very familiar with, Kelly Senko, who plays the daughter Rosemary.

Senko has appeared in a number of productions in Campbell River, most recently in Rivercity’s first play back after the pandemic; Love Letters.

In Jonas and Barry, Senko said, “I enjoy so much about this play! But mostly, how relatable it is to real life, and the range of emotions it portrays. From hilarity to sobbing, this play has it all.”

Senko sees her character “as a real person. Someone struggling to care for herself as she cares for her Dad. I’m really enjoying playing Rosie.”

Tickets for Jonas and Barry in the Home are available at www.rivercityplayers.ca and are $20 each.

Campbell RiverLive theatre