OCTOBER 2023 | Volume 232


Production image

Susinn McFarlen and Dawn Petten in The Birds and the Bees, 2019: set design by Ted Roberts; costume design by Alaia Hamer; lighting design by Michael K. Hewitt; photo by Moonrider Productions for the Arts Club Theatre Company.

The Birds and the Bees
by Mark Crawford
Arts Club Theatre Company on Tour
Oct. 4-Nov. 12 or 604-687-1644

Experience rib-tickling realizations of life and love in Mark Crawford’s The Birds & the Bees, touring October 4–November 12 across the Lower Mainland and B.C.

The Birds & the Bees follows Sarah (Agnes Tong), a turkey farmer, who has split up with her husband and moved in with her mom, Gail (Nancy Kerr), a beekeeper. Add in Earl (Gerry Mackay), the flirty neighbour, and Ben (Riley Hardwick), an eager young graduate student, and you have the perfect breeding ground for unlikely attractions. Set in adjoining bedrooms, The Birds & the Bees is a Canadian comedy about love, lust, beekeeping, and the artificial insemination of turkeys.

The Arts Club’s 2019 production of The Birds & the Bees on the Granville Island Stage was a hugely popular audience favourite. Following the BC provincial tour this October and November, Alberta Theatre Projects will present The Birds & the Bees May 7–25.

Artistic Director Ashlie Corcoran says, “I love this big-hearted, silly, modern—and progressive—sex farce, where the older characters get to have as much fun—or more—than their younger counterparts. But, this piece is also much more than frolicking fun. It also plays with generational differences and the way those differences are revealed in issues of environmentalism, economics, sexuality, and ‘good morals’.”

Director Lauren Taylor adds, “I am super excited to be working on this hilarious Canadian play about beekeeping, farming, family, and new beginnings with this incredible cast of well-loved actors. I think this will definitely appeal to the urban beekeeper in your life, anyone who’s been on a farm, or anyone looking for a belly laugh this fall!”

"The Birds & the Bees had the Arts Club audience screaming with laughter and applauding enthusiastically on opening night" —Vancouver Sun

“Buzzes with delight!” —Vancouverscape

Mark Crawford is an actor and playwright. His plays include Stag and DoeBed and Breakfast, and The Birds and the Bees. Since its premiere in 2014 at the Blyth Festival, Stag and Doe has become one of the most-produced new Canadian plays of the decade. Bed and Breakfast premiered in 2015 at the Thousand Islands Playhouse and has played at Montreal's Centaur Theatre, Victoria's Belfry Theatre, the Great Canadian Theatre Company, the Globe Theatre, and at the Arts Club Theatre. The Birds and the Bees premiered at the Blyth Festival in 2016 and has been produced at the Port Stanley Theatre Festival, Prairie Theatre Exchange, and the Thousand Islands Playhouse. His newest play, Boys, Girls, and Other Mythological Creatures, is written for young audiences and premiered with Carousel Players in spring 2017. As an actor, Mark has performed with theatre companies across Canada. He grew up on his family's farm near Glencoe, Ontario, and he now lives in Stratford.

Riley Hardwick (Ben), Gerry Mackay (Earl), Nancy Kerr (Gail), Agnes Tong (Sarah)

Lauren Taylor (Director), Ted Roberts (Set Designer), Alaia Hamer (Costume Designer), Michael Hewitt (Lighting Designer),Sammie Hatch (Sound Designer), Michelle Thorne-Speir (Intimacy Director), Katherine Matlashewski (Assistant Director), Ronaye Haynes (Stage Manager), Victoria Snashall (Assistant Stage Manager), Pamela Jakobs (Assistant Stage Manager)




The BlueShore at CapU


October 4



Kay Meek Arts Centre


October 5 & 6



Anvil Centre


October 7 & 8



Surrey Arts Centre


October 11–21



Clarke Theatre


October 22



Evergreen Cultural Centre


October 24–28



Chilliwack Cultural Centre


November 1



Shadbolt Centre for the Arts


November 2 & 3



The ACT Arts Centre


November 4 & 5

The Arts Club Theatre Company is situated on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territories of the Coast Salish Peoples, in particular the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and Sel̓íl̓witulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations. We are honoured to live, work, and create on this land together.

The Arts Club, now celebrating its 60th anniversary season, is one of the largest not-for-profit theatre organizations in the country and is the principal gathering place for the theatrical arts in British Columbia. Comprising three unique venues across Vancouver, the Arts Club welcomes more than a quarter million guests annually, tours provincially and nationally, and engages students and artists alike through educational and professional programs.

Above all, the Arts Club is dedicated to the advancement of local artists telling stories from around the globe and, in particular, those of our region. From this, we believe that culture expands, an understanding of differences is nurtured, and art bursts forth. The Arts Club was founded in 1964 and is currently led by Artistic Director Ashlie Corcoran and Executive Director Peter Cathie White.

The Arts Club Theatre Company is situated on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territories of the Coast Salish Peoples, in particular the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and səl̓ilwətaɁɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) nations. We are honoured to live, work, and create on this land together.




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Vancouverplays: Vancouver's arts and culture website providing theatre news, previews and reviews


Vancouver's arts and culture website providing theatre news, previews and reviews