Excellent production of ‘One Hundred Thousand Welcomes’

Adam Cook is a genius!

His production of “One Hundred Thousand Welcomes” last weekend in Port Hawkesbury was one of the most entertaining and most moving theatre experiences I’ve had at the SAERC Auditorium. This was a wonderful addition to Celtic Colours!

Adam tugged at our heartstrings and provided a musical ride down memory lane that had us glued to our seats and wanting more. How he pulled together the many facets of that production is testimony to his extraordinary talent and creative abilities.

There never was a dull moment. The quality of each and every voice in the band and the talents of the musicians allowed us to wallow in the sheer enjoyment of recalling so many Cape Bretoners and others who have filled our lives with song and music through the years.

How fulfilling it was to watch Rita MacNeil on video over the stage smiling out at all of us as we listened to her “Working Man” and “It’s Called Nova Scotia” sung beautifully by three singers in the band who really did her justice. The same can be said for John Allen Cameron and Stan Rogers, although I would have included one of Stan’s songs that we all knew. The video component added so much.

I presume the storyline came out of Adam’s experiences as a young employee at a tourist centre in the fictional community of “Harbour Town.” That was a brilliant idea because it enriched the plot line with their stories and required so many cast members that the theatre came alive.

The young Adam gave a very credible performance and there were moments when we weren’t sure which Adam was the real one. Congratulations to all who took part. You provided a wonderful afternoon for all of us.

Adam was kind enough to acknowledge the previous theatre group in town, Under The Map, whose years of performances inspired Adam and some helped out with this production. He said at the end of the performance that “theatre in Port Hawkesbury is back.” We will all be richer for that.

Thank you, Adam, and to everyone behind the scenes who helped to make it happen.

Shirley Hartery

Port Hawkesbury