Never Shoot a Stampede Queen… while the connotations of the title are slightly confusing what is clear is that you are going to be in for a cowboy experience! And who knew- all in beautiful British Columbia! It’s a wonderful thing to see new writing, by members of our own community, who share their experiences in our own country- that in itself is enough of reason to go see it.
Mark Leiren-Young’s youthful experience working as a journalist in rural BC- Williams Lake to be exact- is both amusing and affecting. It’s great to see the quirky characters he encounters, so vastly different from us “city folk” here in Vancouver and how they obviously impacted his life. The harsh reality of racism, violence, and weather in Williams Lake are all predominant aspects to the play, but most of all its about how it resonated with him and how the experience imparted confidence and perspective in a young man’s early career.
How to Shoot a Stampede Queen is an honest account with a great deal of energy. Small town characters and ridiculous situations are brought to life by the dazzling Zachary Stevenson ( of Buddy Holly fame). In a one man show, Stevenson convincingly has conversations with himself on stage, even portraying and facilitating the visualization of barn dances and concerts. His energy is boundless and never fails to enthrall and excite during the course of the show.
It’s funny I never thought of some of the hardships of small town life before- even the simple act of plugging your car in at night so your engine doesn’t freeze! Then again, apparently people in Vancouver are not from ‘real’ Canada so how are we expected to know that!?
If you are into new work, supporting your community, cowboys, one man shows, Valdy, or even just looking to connect with a truthful, meaningful experience in someone’s life, go see this show- it’s a co-op production so I know they would really appreciate it!