Closer and Closer Apart

Closer and Closer Apart

by Eugene Stickland

April 19– May 6, 2007

Stickland made his name as one of the province’s funniest playwrights, but also one of its most powerful. - Calgary Herald
Closer and Closer Apart

Joe can’t remember things the way he used to. The former architect leaves his books scattered around the room, struggles to keep up his “dewy decimal filing system” and clings to his life’s details scrawled on paper. His daughter Melody, en route to a new life in Arizona, and his son Michael, a preoccupied real-estate agent, must struggle to help their sick father – a man too proud to confront his own illness. A beautifully compassionate and humorous new play from award-winning playwright, Eugene Stickland.

“[Stickland’s] passion for human complexities and his offbeat sense of humour has made him a vital fixture in the theatre community.” – Calgary Herald

Starring: Julien Arnold, Jim DeFelice, Sue Huff
Director: Bradley Moss
Set and Costume Designer: Narda McCarroll
Lighting Designer: David Fraser
Sound Designer: Darrin Hagen
Stage Managed by: Betty Hushlak

READ: Interview with Eugene Stickland
READ: Playwright’s Note
READ: Director’s Note

April 19– May 6, 2007

Previews April 17
Opening April 19




Julien has been acting, directing, and teaching professionally here in Edmonton for about 20 years. He has worked with many of city’s theatres, including The Citadel Theatre, Teatro La Quindicina, Workshop West, Theatre Network, Leave It To Jane, and Northern Light Theatre. His recent acting credits include Happy Toes at this year’s fringe, as well as As You Like It and Richard III with the Freewill Shakespeare Festival in July. His last two shows at Network (as an actor) were Closer and Closer Apart, and the popular Irish comedy A Skull in Connemara. Julien also directed the sequel to that play The Lonesome West as a part of last season’s Roxy Performance Series, featuring two of his present classmates, Collin and James. Look for Julien later this season in the Citadel’s annual production of A Christmas Carol, as well as The Wizard of Oz. Julien would like to thank Brad Moss for his great generosity of spirit, and for all his great advice and encouragement over the last several years.



For Theatre Network, James has directed the Canadian premiere of Nicholas Wright’s VINCENT AND BRIXTON and has served as production dramaturg for Eugene Stickland’s EXCAVATIONS and Chris Craddock’s SUMMER OF MY AMAZING LUCK. This season he played Salter in Trunk Theatre’s production of A NUMBER by Caryl Churchill and directed Michael Melski’s THE FLY FISHER’S COMPANION for Shadow Theatre.



Sue was last seen at Theatre Network in THE LEISURE SOCIETY and is pleased to return to have the chance to work with Brad Moss again and Jim and Julien for the first time. Her past shows include: SPRING ALIBI (Fringe and Yukon Comedy Arts Festival), PUSHING UP DAISIES (Kaboom Festival, Workshop West Theatre), THE TIT SHOW (Theatre Network), OUT TOWN (Citadel Theatre), GREASE and a particularly bad play starring Elliot Gould (Mayfield Theatre), GEEK LOVE, JITTERBUG PERFUME and STARK (generic theatre). She occasionally appears on film and television (INTERN ACADEMY, THE BEAT) and has been nominated twice for best actress (AMPIAs). Sue is the co-creator and award-winning writer of WHO’S ON TOP? for the LIFE Network (Alliance Atlantis), starring Darrin Hagen. She has also written for CBC TV and CBC Radio. Sue is also a director; her first film for the National Film Board of Canada, KIDS TALKIN’ ABOUT DEATH, has been placed on the American Library Association’s Notable Children’s Video list and has received an AMTEC award for educational films.

Next, she will be appearing in Linda Wood’s newest play (Edmonton Fringe Festival) and next season in CHERISH at Northern Light Theatre. Sue lives in Edmonton with her two children and one (very supportive) husband. She dedicates this performance to Caroline Livingstone. Yours are big shoes to fill. Get well soon!



Bradley is an MFA graduate in directing from the University Alberta. He joined Theatre Network in 1996 to create the multidisciplinary emerging artist festival – Nextfest. In 2014 Bradley accepted the dual role of Artistic & Executive Director for Theatre Network. Some recent productions include: BED AND BREAKFAST, THE EMPRESS & THE PRIME MINISTER, MINERVA – QUEEN OF THE HANDCUFFS, INFINITY, The Sterling Award Winning Production IRMA VOTH, BUST, GORDON, RED, THE LAST FIVE YEARS, ARMSTRONG’S WAR, the Governor General Nominated THE GRAVITATIONAL PULL OF BERNICE TRIMBLE, the Sterling Award Winning LITTLE ONE, DRIVING MISS DAISY, the Governor General Award Winning PIG GIRL, the Sterling Award Winning LET THE LIGHT OF DAY THROUGH, WHERE THE BLOOD MIXES, IN ON IT, MOVING ALONG, TWELFTH NIGHT, PUBLIC SPEAKING, DOG, THUNDERSTICK, BUDDY, ALIAS GODOT, MISERY, CLOSER AND CLOSER APART, the Sterling Award Winning SUMMER OF MY AMAZING LUCK, TRUE WEST, GIRL IN THE GOLDFISH BOWL, HOSANNA, MARION BRIDGE, A SKULL IN CONNEMARA, the Sterling Award Winning glam rock musical HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH, and HIGH LIFE.



Eugene Stickland is the award-winning author of several frequently produced plays, most notably SOME ASSEMBLY REQUIRED and A GUIDE TO MOURNING, which were written during a decade long residency with Alberta Theatre Projects in Calgary. His play EXCAVATIONS won the Alberta Playwriting Award and received its premiere production at Theatre Network in 2002. Eugene is the current board president of the Alberta Playwrights Network. He lives in Calgary with his daughter Johanna and writes a feature column for the Calgary Herald.



Narda is very happy to be back working with the great Theatre Network team. Past designs for Network include: set design for GIRL IN THE GOLDFISH BOWL and EYE FOR AND EYE, lighting design for The Leisure Society, and set/costume design for FOR THE PLEASURE OF SEEING HER AGAIN, and LAWRENCE AND HOLLOMAN (Sterling award for set). Narda was the resident designer for Workshop West Theatre for six seasons where she designed MARY’S WEDDING, MY ONE AND ONLY, APPLE,17 DOGS, MESA, RESPECTABLE, and ILSA, QUEEN OF THE NAZI LOVE CAMP. Other recent design credits include: costume design for THE PILLOWMAN and production design for FULLY COMMITTED, THE SYRINGA TREE, and BLUE/ORANGE (Citadel Theatre), set/costumes for VINCENT IN BRIXTON and STONES IN HIS POCKETS (ATP, Calgary), and costume design for the past seven summers for The River City Shakespeare Festival in Edmonton.



David is an Edmonton based, award-winning theatrical and dance lighting designer. He works extensively across the country and frequents theatres such as Alberta Theatre Projects, Vertigo Theatre (Calgary), The National Arts Centre (Ottawa), Buddies In Bad Times Theatre (Toronto), Workshop West Theatre, L’Uni Theatre, (Edmonton), and The Globe Theatre (Regina). Previous designs with Theatre Network include ALL CLEAR, VINCENT IN BRIXTON, HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH, MIDLIFE, PLAYING BARE, PILEDRIVER!, SUBURBAN MOTEL, and A GUIDE TO MOURNING. Throughout the last eight years, David has also been the resident designer with Concrete Theatre, and with the Brian Webb Dance Company, and in 2002 his design for Tania Alvarado’s AZUL ABIERTO toured throughout the country and Europe. Most recent credits include lighting for DEATH AND THE MAIDEN and the Globe Theatre, and the assistant light designer for THE CIRCLE AND THE PHILANDERER at the Shaw Festival.



Darrin Hagen is the Artistic Director of Guys In Disguise, which is celebrating over three decades of creating drag comedies that have toured across North America. He has received 7 Sterling awards for his work in the Edmonton theatre scene, and over 40 Sterling nominations. His writing debut in 1996 was the award-winning THE EDMONTON QUEEN (transformed into book length and published by Brindle & Glass Publishing). Other plays by Darrin include WITCH HUNT AT THE STRAND (nominated for Outstanding New Play); BUDDY (nominated for Outstanding New Play); With Bells On (nominated for Outstanding New Play); BITCHSLAP!; THE NEO-NANCIES: HITLER’S KICKLINE!; TORNADO MAGNET: A SALUTE TO TRAILER COURT WOMEN (published by Brindle & Glass); as well as TYPHOON JUDY (co-written with Christopher Peterson); and PILEDRIVER! (co-written with Wes Borg). His plays have been produced across Canada, in the U.S. and as far away as Ireland.

With his creative partner Trevor Schmidt, he has co-created the hit musical KLONDYKES (nominated for 5 Sterling awards); FLORA & FAWNA’S FIELD TRIP (Sterling Award for Outstanding New Fringe Work); PREPARE FOR THE WORST! (Sterling Nominee for Outstanding New Fringe Work); PUCK BUNNIES (Sterling Nominee for Outstanding New Fringe Work); DON’T FROWN AT THE GOWN; PSYCHOBABBLE; DRAGULA and the children’s musical MY OTHER MOTHER.

He has been inducted into the Q Hall of Fame Canada and the Edmonton Queer Hall of Fame. In 2005 he was named one of 100 Edmontonians of the Century, and last year was named one of Alberta’s 25 Most Influential Artists in the last 25 years. To the best of his knowledge, he’s the only drag queen on that list. He was one of the official Cultural Ambassadors of Canada’s 150 Celebrations, and was appointed as the Writer In Residence for Edmonton Public Libraries for 2018. Most recently, he was one of the recipients of the Edmonton Artists’ Trust Fund.



Betty is very pleased to be part of the company of WHAT A YOUNG WIFE OUGHT TO KNOW. Betty has stage managed Workshop West Playwrights’ Theatre’s production of CAFE DAUGHTER in Belgrade, Serbia, Herceg Novi, Montenegro, at the sPARK Festival/ Belfry Theatre, Victoria, BC, the National Arts and Cultural Centre, Yellowknife, NWT, and at CANADA SCENE at the National Arts Centre, Ottawa, ON.  Other credits include: producer; WiLDLIFE — a video installation at River Valley Crossing in Edmonton, assistant stage manager; DON GIOVANNI, Edmonton Opera, stage manager for the Alberta Ballet.  She goes onto co-produce and stage manage Conni Massing’s, OH! CHRISTMAS TREE, as part of the Roxy Performance Series this December.