Elyse Ritchie (left) isn’t the only one in her family with a passion for theatre. She shares that with her father – who was involved in theatre in high school. “I can’t wait for the day when we can do a show together,” the daughter shared. (Special to the Langley Advance)

Actor hits playhouse tonight, in honour of her sister

Langley’s Elyse Ritchie may be an administrator by day, but by night she loves being on stage.

Elyse Ritchie took her current acting role as Emma Borden in memory of her sister.

The soon to be 32-year-old Langley City actor takes to the stage tonight in the Langley Players production of Blood Relations, and for Ritchie the production holds some significant sentimental meaning.

“I wanted to be in this play because I lost my older sister [Leanne Erickson] last year to cancer and she was always so supportive of my acting,” Ritchie told the Langley Advance.

“I knew she would want me to continue doing what I love most.”

Ritchie started her acting career once she made it to kindergarten, or so she tells it.

“I have always loved reading out loud, and changing my voice for different characters, so it made perfect sense,” she said of her early start on stage.

In fact, she’s listed with a local talent agency and has auditioned for a few commercials and extra parts. But it seems her voice is getting more attention.

“I absolutely love doing voiceover work,” she said. “I am told on a daily basis that I have a very unique voice. I hope to continue that passion once Blood Relations wraps up.”

Ritchie actual began her involvement in community theatre in 2007, her first duties as a stage manager in the White Rock Players’ showing of HA!.

Since then, she’s participated in four shows in the past four years with Langley Players, not to mention taken part in various productions with Surrey Little Theatre, Royal Canadian Theatre Company, and Peninsula Productions.

By day, Ritchie works at Coast Capital Savings full-time. But her hours as an administrator, combined with her “understanding” husband, family, and friends allow her to pursue her passion for acting in her spare time.

They understand “they may see less of me,” for the four months stretch from the beginning of rehearsals through to the final curtain call.

In the case of Blood Relations, the first showing debuts tonight (Thursday, April 19) at the Langley Playhouse. This play runs until mid-May. They’ve been rehearsing for the past two months.

“The most rewarding part has been the new friendships formed and how we have all been able to collaborate on this production,” Ritchie said of the experience.

“I have had so much fun working with this amazingly talented group of people. Everyone has been so supportive and complimentary… I think the funniest moment for me was during rehearsals we could be totally in the moment of the scene but then just burst into laughter. It just made everyone seem to loosen up and have fun.”

A thriller

While there were many laughs shared in rehearsals leading up to tonight’s curtain call, it is no comedy. Far from. It delves into the story of two parents who were murdered with an axe.

“This is a thriller mystery, which will keep you on the edge of your seat,” Ritchie said, encouraging theatre lovers to give it a shot.

On Aug. 4, 1892, Andrew and Abigail Borden were found axe murdered in their home in Fall River, Massachusetts.

Andrew’s youngest daughter Lizzie was charged but later acquitted of the double murder.

Years after her trial, Lizzie and her friend re-enact the tension within the Borden home in the days leading up to the infamous murder.

As the audience you can decide her guilt or innocence, or whether the murders were the only way out of a constrained existence in the mind of Lizzie Borden. Did she or didn’t she?

The question still reverberates.

Sharon Pollock is Canadian playwright, actor, and director who was awarded the Governor General’s Literary Award for this 1981 drama.

“I just want people to know that they will not be disappointed with the show. They really will be in for a treat,” Ritchie concluded.

She shares the stage with Maple Ridge’s T.J. MacPherson as Miss Lizzie, Langley’s Kristine Brams as the actress, Port Coquitlam’s Mary Ellen Shimell as Abigail Borden, Coquitlam’s Roger Meloche as Andrew Borden, Maple Ridge’s Paul Beckett as Harry Wingate, and Cloverdale’s Thomas Loan-Johnston as Dr. Patrick.

This play is directed by Langley’s Raymond Hatton, Langley’s production manager Mary Renvall, and the assistant production manager Tarrah Tanaka is from Cloverdale.

On until May 19

Blood Relations is featured Thursdays through Saturdays until May 19 with evening shows at 8 p.m., and Sunday matinees at 2 p.m.

Tickets for the show are $15 for all performances. Reservations can be made online, by email at reservations@langleyplayers.com, or by calling 604-534-7469. Tickets can also be purchased online.

 

Blood Relation is a Sharon Pollock play that is being put on at the Langley Playhouse from April 19 to May 19. (Special to the Langley Advance)

Blood Relation is a Sharon Pollock play that is being put on at the Langley Playhouse from April 19 to May 19. (Special to the Langley Advance)

Blood Relation is a Sharon Pollock play that is being put on at the Langley Playhouse from April 19 to May 19. (Special to the Langley Advance)

Blood Relation is a Sharon Pollock play that is being put on at the Langley Playhouse from April 19 to May 19. (Special to the Langley Advance)

Blood Relation is a Sharon Pollock play that is being put on at the Langley Playhouse from April 19 to May 19. (Special to the Langley Advance)

Just Posted

VIDEO: Saturday was devoted to the arts in Langley City

The 25th annual Arts Alive festival took over a main thoroughfare.

Arena opens at Aldergrove Credit Union Community Centre

Grand procession brings Aldergrove ice arena users to new facility

Regional fuchsia and geranium club firmly rooted in Langley

The club’s annual show and competition Saturday filled St. Andrew’s Anglican Church with colour.

‘Beauty amongst such tragedy:’ B.C. photographer captures nature’s trifecta

David Luggi’s photo from a beach in Fraser Lake shows Shovel Lake wildfire, Big Dipper and an aurora

Air quality advisory continues in the Lower Mainland

Smoke from Interior fires brings fine particulate

‘We will not forget:’ Thousands attend funeral fallen Fredericton officers

Hundreds of officials marched in the parade, which included massed band, several police motorcycles

B.C. man designer behind Canucks’ retro jersey

Jeremie White was 20 years old when he told Canucks assistant GM Brian Burke he had a design

Lions give up late TD in 24-23 loss to Argos

B.C. falls to 3-5, fumbling away last-minute chance in Toronto

Eagle tree cut down legally a 1st for B.C. city

Planned eagle preserve ‘a first for City of Surrey’

Smoky skies like a disappearing act for sights, monuments around B.C.

Haze expected to last the next several days, Environment Canada said

Canadians react to death of former UN secretary-general Kofi Annan at age 80

Nobel Peace Prize-winning former UN leader died early Saturday following a short illness

44 drownings so far this year in B.C.

Lifesaving Society urging caution to prevent deaths while on lakes, oceans and in pools

Some of B.C.’s air quality levels worse than Jodhpur, India

Okanagan, northern B.C. seeing some of the worst air quality globally

Most Read