Padre X (Looking Glass Productions) 2011 Toronto Fringe Review

Imagine Jimmy Stewart playing Forest Gump, but telling a real story. This is what you will see at Padre X if you go to The Annex Theatre during Fringe.

Padre X is infotainment. It is the authentic telling of the story of John Weir Foote. Marc A. Moir performs a solo show as Chaplain Foote, or Padre X.

Foote won the Victora Cross for his heroic actions during WWII. He defied orders and landed on the Dieppe beaches in the 40’s. He gave spiritual and physical comfort to the men, the heroes, who defended everything the western world believes in.

Apparently we used to believe in and stand for something in those days. Since then, words like duty, valour, honour and respect have been replaced with words like “Jennifer Anniston” and “Will and Kate”.

Our cousin John McCain likes to brag about being a POW. Moir paints a picture of what it was actually like. This isn’t Hogan’s Heroes, this is real, and it is hell. Thirty mile hikes in bare feet. Crazy Cannucks outsmarting Nazi stormtroopers.

So this is a very important play.

Moir paints an incredible picture of the journey across the English Channel. It was dark and scary, and most of our boys got seasick. I’ve been seasick, it is nasty. Being seasick is like eating ice cream compared to what these men went through.

Most of our soldiers who left for duty from England never made it home that day. Thousands of them paid the ultimate price. More people died on that horribly botched day than on 9/11 in New York City.

Foote saved many many on the beach at Dieppe and later surrendered to The Nazis. He spent several months imprisoned and used the time to give comfort to the troops. He kept hope alive.

I really liked Mr. Moir addressing the audience afterwards. There are stories that need to be told and remembered. My friend Roger mentioned the name Charles Liteky when I told him that I was excited to see this play. These are the types of stories that need to be remembered and should be required viewing in our schools.

Details:

Padre X is playing at the Annex Theatre during Fringe

Showtime: 80 min.

Wed, July 6 8:15 PM
Fri, July 8 3:00 PM
Mon, July 10 10:15 PM
Tue, July 12 6:30 PM
Wed, July 14 5:15 PM
Fri, July 15 Noon
Sun, July 16 7:00 PM

– All individual Fringe tickets are $10 ($5 for FringeKids) at the door (cash only). Tickets are available online at www.fringetoronto.com, by phone at 416-966-1062, in person at The Randolph Centre for the Arts, 736 Bathurst Street (Advance tickets are $11 – $10+$1 convenience fee)
– Several money-saving passes are available if you plan to see at least 5 shows

Photo: Marc A. Moir