Trauma and Transformation – Meet the Cast of The Seduction Theory

What happens to a teen girl when she starts to mature and attracts the attention of men? She’s blamed for her attractiveness, labeled an attention-seeking problem-child and is sent away to be “fixed.” This societal routine is put centre-stage in FemFest 2016’s world premiere of The Seduction Theory.

Written by Vancouver playwright Sherry MacDonald and set in the 1950s, the play brings to life a cast of characters who all believe they are doing what is right. We follow 15-year-old Cass as she transforms from naiveté to a loss of innocence. She is guided on this path by jaded-beyond-her-years Rebecca. Marg runs the home for at risk girls, trying to be a replacement mother but unable to protect them from the likes of Dr. Branford.

Meet the actors that will bring this eye-opening story to life. With FemFest 2016’s theme of Transformation, we asked about their growing careers and their personal transformations over the years.

Hailley Rhoda Headshot.jpgHailley Rhoda As Cass. Rhoda has already been in a handful of productions throughout Winnipeg including our International Women’s Week Cabaret of Monologues and Ripple Effect School Tour. With eclectic tastes, her time travelling choices would be to go to either 500BC to observe Spartan society or 1953 to watch the birth of the Stratford Festival.  Her biggest change is her growing dependence on coffee: “I drink far more coffee and have glasses. Mainly it’s the steady increase in caffeine that’s noticeable.”

hannah.pngHannah Wigglesworth – As Rebecca. Wigglesworth is a self-proclaimed animal lover, food enthusiast and a musical theatre nerd. She is currently working on her Bachelor of Music – Classical Voice at the University of Manitoba. Her biggest personal change:  “I have become much more confident and focused. I’ve always known what I wanted to do but now I am focused on working hard and making it happen. I’ve also become much more independent and sure of myself.”

merri-louMerri-Lou Paterson – As Marg.  Paterson has loved and been involved in the theatre since forever. Not just an actor, she indulges in art, photography and travel. If she wasn’t doing theatre she would be traveling as a food writer. Her biggest personal change: “I’ve always been very conscious the role of fear has played in my life and have worked very hard at feeling it but not allowing it to make the final decisions.  I would say that, being the age I am, I have learned a few more ways to put fear in its place and not in the driver’s seat.  This has allowed me to enjoy a multitude of new experiences personally and professionally.”

GRANT BURR - HEADSHOTGrant Burr – As Dr. Branford.  Burr is a graduate of the University of Winnipeg honours acting program and a FemFest alumni having past roles in The Naked Woman and Flood Control and FemFest 2015’s Bake-Off.  How Burr has changed from the person he was 5 years ago:The older I get the more I find that it is important to focus and fight for the things that are really important in your life. You never know when you won’t be able to enjoy those things you love anymore, so enjoy them while they last. In other words, put me on that stage!”

Catch these talented actors in The Seduction Theory at FemFest 2016: Transformation. The show runs from September 17 – 24, 2016 at the Asper Centre for Theatre & Film (University of Winnipeg). Visit femfest.ca for tickets and show times.

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