The Audience

By Peter Morgan (author of the Netflix series The Crown)
A co-production with Mirvish Productions

John Hirsch Mainstage

4 1/2 STARS – Winnipeg Free Press

"We are amused, and intrigued, by this Audience" – CBC

Few dynasties have stood the test of time like the House of Windsor. Fiona Reid (Calendar Girls, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike) returns to the Royal MTC stage to don the crown of Queen Elizabeth II as she meets with each of her Prime Ministers for a private audience every week for more than 60 years.


Times & Tickets

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Equerry Anthony Bekenn

Anthony Bekenn

ROYAL MTC There Goes the Bride.

OTHER THEATRE 19 seasons with the Shaw Festival including Journey’s End, Serious Money, On the Rocks, Saint Joan and Rebecca; Stuff Happens (Mirvish/Studio 180); Kindertransport (Harold Green Jewish Theatre); See How They Run (TA); Wizard of Oz, Run for Your Wife (Drayton); Arms and the Man (Western Canada Theatre); Noises Off (Citadel).

FILM/TV Includes Murdoch Mysteries, Tracker, Doc, The Two Mr. Kissels, Wind At My Back, Counterstrike, E.N.G., Street Legal, Secret Service.

TRAINING/TEACHING Webber-Douglas Academy in London, England.

ET CETERA Anthony is delighted to be working with Christopher Newton again,
for the eleventh time.

Harold Wilson Nigel Bennett

Nigel Bennett


OTHER THEATRE Peter Pan, The Merry Wives of Windsor, Cymbeline, Measure for Measure, Richard III, Mary Stuart, Oedipus Rex, She Stoops to Conquer, The Diary of Anne Frank, The Thrill (Stratford); The Last Confession, with David Suchet (world tour); Hamlet, Closer, The Goat or, Who is Sylvia?, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, The Sound of Music, The Price (Neptune); Something Fishy (Lighthouse Festival Theatre).

FILM/ TV Narrow Margin, Murder at 1600, Rats and Rabbits, Legends of the Fall, xXx3 – The Return of Xander Cage, The Shape of Water, Forever Knight, Kung Fu: The Legend Continues, Murdoch Mysteries, Psi Factor, Hotel Metropolitan, The Strain, Roadside Picnic.

ET CETERA Gemini Award nominee four timesand winner once. ACTRA Award nominee three times and winner twice.

John Major Evan Buliung

Evan Buliung

ROYAL MTC Chimerica, The Homecoming.

OTHER THEATRE Upcoming: Sky Masterson in Guys and Dolls (Stratford). Ten seasons with Stratford, including: title role in The Adventures of Pericles, Tom Joad in The Grapes of Wrath, Edgar in King Lear, Petruchio in The Taming of the Shrew, Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet; four seasons with the Shaw Festival; Macbeth (Chicago Shakespeare Theater); Aragorn in Lord of the Rings, We Will Rock You (Mirvish); Art (CS); Bloodless: The Trial of Burke and Hare (Theatre 20); Long Day’s Journey Into Night (Soulpepper); Peter and the Starcatcher (WCT).

FILM/TV Damnation,The Art of More, Reign, Saving Hope, Bitten, The Listener, Haven, Nikita, Warehouse 13, Copper, The Adventures of Pericles, King Lear, Brainwashed, Skating to New York, Assassins Creed Syndicate, Far Cry Primal.

ET CETERA Thrilled to be in this company with such great artists working on this great play with the great Christopher Newton at the helm.

Gordon Brown Benedict Campbell

Benedict Campbell

ROYAL MTC Six Degrees of Separation, 1949, Bent.

OTHER THEATRE 13 seasons at the Shaw Festival including Sweeney Todd, Our Town, Juno and the Paycock, Cabaret, Major Barbara, Ragtime, Heartbreak House, My Fair Lady, John Bull’s Other Island, The Cherry Orchard, The Entertainer, Mack and Mabel, The Crucible, Happy End, Man and Superman, The Plough and the Stars.
Elsewhere: Wormwood (Tarragon); title role in King Lear (TC/Bard on the Beach); Oedipus in Oedipus Rex, Hamlet, Henry IV, Julius Caesar, The Alchemist (Stratford); King Lear (Lincoln Center); My Fair Lady (Arena Stage, Washington).

FILM/TV Republic of Doyle, Act of Dishonour, Slings and Arrows, Road to Avonlea, Dieppe.

David Cameron/Bishop Ben Carlson

Ben Carlson

ROYAL MTC The Seafarer, The Homecoming, Closer.

OTHER THEATRE Selected from over 80 productions: Hamlet, Petruchio, Benedick, Leontes, Feste, Touchstone, Brutus; A Little Night Music, The Hypochondriac, Mother Courage, Mary Stuart, The Misanthrope (Stratford); Man and Superman (Tanner), Saint Joan, Major Barbara, The Plough and the Stars, Three Sisters, The Return of the Prodigal, All My Sons, The Madras House, The Seagull, Mrs. Warren’s Profession (Shaw). Across Canada: Canadian Stage, Mirvish Productions, Grand Theatre, Soulpepper, NAC, Neptune, Factory, Necessary Angel, PTE, Theatre Calgary, Theatre New Brunswick. Chicago Shakespeare Theater: Hamlet, Macbeth, Pericles, The School For Lies. Upcoming: The Changeling, Timon of Athens, The Madwoman of Chaillot (Stratford).

FILM/TV The Strain, Reign, The Anniversary, Saving Hope, Rookie Blue, Grey Gardens, Slings and Arrows, The 11th Hour.

Young Elizabeth Naomi Cronk

Naomi Cronk

ROYAL MTC First appearance.

OTHER THEATRE For (Winnipeg Fringe); Reunion (Black Hole); The Laramie Project, Killing Game, Seven Doors (U of W).

TRAINING Graduate of U of W, BA (Hons.) Acting.

ET CETERA Much love to my family and appreciation for their tireless support of
me and my dreams.

Anthony Eden Paul Essiembre

Paul Essiembre

ROYAL MTC Unnecessary Farce, Things We Do For Love, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, The Heart of Robin Hood (with Mirvish), Other People’s Money, A Few Good Men (with Citadel).

OTHER THEATRE Paul has been performing professionally throughout the country for almost 25 years, most recently in Dry Cold’s A Little Night Music. Other favourites include Butcher, The Best Brothers (PTE); Romeo and Juliet (Citadel); The Normal Heart, The Overwhelming, Stuff Happens (Studio 180); To Kill a Mockingbird, The Odyssey, The Duchess of Malfi, Don Juan, Macbeth (Stratford); L’Emmerdeur, Le Dîner de cons, Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme, Art (Théâtre français de Toronto); Tillsonburg (CS); Zadie’s Shoes, Oui (Factory); Picasso at the Lapin Agile (Centaur).

FILM/TV More than 50 film and television appearances and extensive work in documentary narration, animation and commercial voice-overs.

Margaret Thatcher Kate Hennig

Kate Hennig

ROYAL MTC First appearance.

OTHER THEATRE Breath of Kings, Romeo and Juliet, Fiddler on the Roof (Stratford); Hedda Gabler (Necessary Angel); The December Man (NAC); Mrs. Wilkinson in Billy Elliot (Broadway/ Mirvish); The Penelopiad (RSC/NAC); Ragtime, When We Are Married, A Lovely Sunday for Creve Coeur (Shaw). Playwright: The Last Wife (Stratford, 2015 premiere); The Virgin Trial (Stratford, 2017 premiere).

FILM/TV Rachel Lynde in Anne of Green Gables (PBS/YTV); Saving Hope; Bomb Girls; Flashpoint; 32 Short Films About Glenn Gould.

TRAINING MA in Voice Studies, Central School of Speech and Drama.

ET CETERA Awards: 2015 Christopher Plummer Fellowship Award of Excellence; two Dora Awards; Toronto Theatre Critics’ Award; three Betty Mitchell Awards; Genie Award nomination.

Tony Blair Kevin Klassen

Kevin Klassen

ROYAL MTC Chimerica (with Canadian Stage), Alice Through the Looking-Glass, The Melville Boys (Tour), Romeo and Juliet, The Shunning, White Christmas, It’s A Wonderful Life: A Radio Play, Bleeding Hearts, Our Town, The Tempest, A Christmas Carol, The Dresser, Feelgood (with GCTC), King Lear, Romeo and Juliet.

OTHER THEATRE (Selected) A Little Night Music (Dry Cold); A Strange Pair (Echo); Edward II (TBTR); Antony and Cleopatra (SIR); Arcadia (Citadel); Annie (Rainbow); Till It Hurts (PTE); John and Beatrice (TPM); Death of a Salesman (WJT); The Sea, Tartuffe, The Three Sisters (U of W).

FILM/TV Channel Zero, Barbara Blackwood, The Pinkertons, New in Town, Elijah, Gavin Alcock, Niagara Hotel, Unwoven.

TRAINING/TEACHING University of Winnipeg, 2015 Citadel/Banff Professional Training Program.

ET CETERA Kevin is a proud member and product of The Reg Skene Legacy, and the recipient of the 2014 Reg Skene Award for Emerging Playwright. Love always to Charlene.

Winston Churchill John B. Lowe

John B. Lowe

ROYAL MTC Harvey, Unnecessary Farce.

OTHER THEATRE Common Sense Cabarets (Broccolo Creative); The Secret Mask, The Savannah Disputation, Having Hope at Home (PTE); Here on the Flight Path, For the Pleasure of Seeing Her Again, The Drawer Boy (Sunshine Theatre); An Inspector Calls (Chemainus Theatre Festival); Measure for Measure (Citadel); Dear Santa, Over the River and Through the Woods (Western Canada Theatre).

FILM/TV Series regular: Tiny Plastic Men, Cashing In, Nothing Too Good for a Cowboy. Movies: Juliana and the Medicine Fish, Reasonable Doubt, Silent Night, The Christmas Heart, Euphoria, Lucky Christmas, Wedding for One, Locked Down, The Hessen Conspiracy, The Secrets of Comfort House, Fido, The Butterfly Effect, The Ultimate Christmas Present, Trapped. TV appearances: The Pinkertons, Less Than Kind, Millennium, The X-Files, First Wave, The Immortal, The New Addams Family, Cold Squad.

ET CETERA Producer for Broccolo Creative ( Writer/Director of several short films including W(or)K, Just One and Windows of White. Formerly SchoolDirector at Prairie Theatre Exchange.

Private Secretary/Archbishop/Detective Rob McLaughlin

Rob McLaughlin

ROYAL MTC Things We Do For Love, The Seagull, A Christmas Story, Gone With the Wind, The Seafarer, The Shunning.

OTHER THEATRE Julius Caesar – Casca, The Merry Wives of Windsor – Mistress Quickley (SIR); The Three Munchketeers – Porthos (PTE); Three Sisters – Andy (zone41); The Winter’s Tale – Antigonus/Shepherd (Tom Tom Theatre); Einstein’s Gift – Deacon (WJT).

Queen Elizabeth II Fiona Reid

Fiona Reid

ROYAL MTC Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, Calendar Girls (with Mirvish), The Constant Wife (with Citadel), Arcadia (with CS), Six Degrees of Separation (with CS), Hay Fever (with Citadel), Death and the Maiden (with CS), A Bee in Her Bonnet, She Stoops to Conquer, The Cherry Orchard, The Boy Friend.

OTHER THEATRE Shaw Festival (13 seasons): productions include A Woman of No Importance, The Dance of Death, The Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide, The Divine, The Sea, The Charity that Began at Home, Hay Fever, Lady Windermere’s Fan, The Seagull, The Secret Life, Cavalcade, Waste, Point Valaine, Hedda Gabler, Present Laughter, Heartbreak House, Private Lives, The Skin of Our Teeth. Extensive work across Canada/ internationally, including five seasons at the Stratford Festival.

FILM /TV Many roles, including The Time Traveler’s Wife, My Big Fat Greek Wedding 1 & 2.

ET CETERA Sterling; Jessie; Dora; Honorary Doctorate, Bishop’s University; ACTRA Award of Excellence; Order of Canada. Fiona is also President of The AFC.

Footman Ray Strachan

Ray Strachan

ROYAL MTC The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, Romeo and Juliet, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (with TC).

OTHER THEATRE Dutchman (play On theatre); Peg and the Yeti (MTYP); Lobby Hero (The 28th Minute); Remember the Night (Moving Target Theatre); Fen (Sarasvàti); Jonno, Dog Act, A Behanding in Spokane, Shock Corridor, The Ingrates (Winnipeg Fringe).

TRAINING Black Hole Theatre Company (U of M).

ET CETERA Ray will be featured in the powerful play The Whipping Man later this spring at Winnipeg Jewish Theatre. Luv to Mom, Dad and Gerls.

Mistress of Robes/Lady in-Waiting Melanie Whyte

Melanie Whyte

ROYAL MTC First appearance.

OTHER THEATRE A Man of No Importance, The Light in the Piazza, Company, Nine (Dry Cold); Till it Hurts (PTE); Sister Act, Mary Poppins, Annie, The Full Monty, Fiddler on the Roof (Rainbow); Miss N’ Me (Sarasvàti Productions); Strike! The Musical (Danny Schur Productions).

TRAINING/TEACHING Graduate of Vancouver’s Film & Theatre School under direction of Anthony Holland and Catherine Caines.

ET CETERA Melanie maintains a singing teaching studio in Winnipeg and specializes in training theatre singers.

Bobo MacDonald/ Lady-in-Waiting Stefanie Wiens

Stefanie Wiens

ROYAL MTC Actor: Alice Through The Looking-Glass, Miracle on South Division
(Mainstage and tour), Strong Poison, Pride and Prejudice, Much Ado About Nothing, Richard III. Assistant Director: Steel Magnolias. Apprentice Director: Calendar Girls (with Mirvish).

OTHER THEATRE Selected: Blithe Spirit (Echo Theatre/CowardFest); The Touring Test, Wild Magic (Winnipeg Fringe); Kindness (MTYP); A Moon for the Misbegotten (O’NeillFest); Beauty and the Beast, Fiddler on the Roof (Rainbow); Sorority Girls Slumber Party Massacre: The Musical, Bad Girls Jailhouse (Canadian Fringe tours).

FILM/TV Selected: The Pinkertons, Barbara Blackwood Movie (post-production), Denizens of the Dead, Barbara James.

TRAINING U of M, U of W.


Artistic Team

Playwright Peter Morgan

Peter Morgan

Peter Morgan’s first stage play was FROST/ NIXON, developed with producer Matthew Byam Shaw for the Donmar Warehouse. His film credits include screenplays for The Queen, starring Helen Mirren and Michael Sheen (Academy Award nomination, Golden Globe Winner); The Last King of Scotland, starring Forest Whitaker (BAFTA Award Winner) and the screen adaptation of FROST/NIXON, directed by Ron Howard, starring Frank Langella and Michael Sheen. His TV credits include HBO’s multi-Golden Globe-winning Longford, The Deal (BAFTA Award for Best Single Drama) and Henry VIII (International Emmy for Best Drama, 2004).

Director Christopher Newton

Christopher Newton

ROYAL MTC DIRECTOR The Innocent Eye Test, You Never Can Tell. Actor The Homecoming, The Three Sisters, Galileo, The Private Ear & The Public Eye, The Caretaker.

OTHER THEATRE Artistic Director Emeritus of the Shaw Festival. Founding Artistic Director of Theatre Calgary. Artistic Director of the Vancouver Playhouse and founder of the Playhouse Acting School.

ET CETERA Molson Prize, Governor General’s Award, Chalmers Award, seven Honorary Degrees, the Order of Canada.

Set & Costume Designer Christina Poddubiuk

Christina Poddubiuk

ROYAL MTC Costume Designer: A Streetcar Named Desire, Six Degrees of Separation, Hamlet.

OTHER THEATRE Numerous productions at the Stratford Festival (including John Gabriel Borkman, Phèdre, All’s Well That Ends Well and Hamlet) and the Shaw Festival (including Pygmalion, Faith Healer, Come Back Little Sheba, On the Rocks and A Moon for the Misbegotten). Costumes for Don Quichotte (COC); Lucia di Lammermoor, Tosca, Capriccio (Pacific Opera Victoria); Romeo and Juliet (Denver Center Theater); Venus in Fur, A Tender Thing (Belfry); Romeo and Juliet (NAC); Much Ado About Nothing, Othello (Chicago Shakespeare).

TRAINING McGill University, National Theatre School.

Lighting Designer Scott Henderson

Scott Henderson

ROYAL MTC Over fifty productions since 1995, including Billy Elliot The Musical, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike (with Mirvish), Good People, Next to Normal, The 39 Steps, Doubt, A Parable (with TC), Shakespeare’s Dog (with NAC), White Christmas (Mainstage); Red (with Belfry), The Seagull, Top Girls, The Shape of Things, Closer (Warehouse).

OTHER THEATRE Most recent: The Gravitational Pull of Bernice Trimble (PTE);
Cash: Ring of Fire: The Music of Johnny Cash and Shrek: The Musical (Rainbow). Scott has designed lighting for opera, dance and theatre companies in Winnipeg and across Canada, including the Shaw and Stratford festivals.

TRAINING Scott is a graduate of Ryerson Theatre School and a member of the
Associated Designers of Canada.

ET CETERA Special thanks to Karen, Sean and Alex for love and support.

Sound Designer John Lott

John Lott

ROYAL MTC Larry’s Party (with NAC/CS)

OTHER THEATRE Having worked in theatre for the past 25 years, there are far too many wonderful experiences to list. Recent productions include: Alice in Wonderland, Sweeney Todd (Shaw) and Grey Gardens (Acting Upstage). John has been part of nine seasons with the Shaw Festival, two seasons at the Stratford Festival, the inaugural season at the Atlantic Theatre Festival and 12 seasons at Toronto’s Soulpepper Theatre. John has toured with many of the mega musicals: Phantom of the Opera, Show Boat, Sunset Boulevard and Riverdance. Several exciting new projects for Mirvish Productions, Acting Upstage and Teatro Proscenium Productions on the near horizon will be keeping him busy. Go, Jets!

Dialect Coach Shannon Vickers

Shannon Vickers

ROYAL MTC Myth of the Ostrich, Billy Elliot The Musical, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, The Woman in Black, Private Lives, Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Jersey Lily, Good People, The Secret Annex, Venus in Fur, Gone With the Wind, August: Osage County, Mrs. Warren’s Profession, Top Girls, Steel Magnolias.

OTHER THEATRE Voice/Text/Dialect Coaching: DAI (Enough) (WJT); Village Wooing (zone41); Bingo! (PTE); The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven Blatz (TPM/SAC); The Merry Wives of Windsor (SIR); Fen (Sarasvàti); A Midsummer Night’s Dream (CS).

TRAINING/TEACHING Shannon earned an MFA in Theatre Voice Pedagogy at the University of Alberta. She is an Associate Professor at the University of Winnipeg and is a certified Associate Teacher of Knight-Thompson Speechwork.

Stage Manager Dianne Woodrow

Dianne Woodrow

ROYAL MTC Calendar Girls, The Boys in the Photograph.

OTHER THEATRE Production Stage Manager: Workshop of the new musicals Sousakzka and Hard Times. The Canadian debut productions of Mamma Mia!, The Lion King, Rent, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Les Misérables; Shaw Festival and Charlottetown Festival. Other stage management credits include shows at Soulpepper Theatre, National Arts Centre, Canadian Opera Company, Canadian Stage, Stratford Festival, Vancouver Playhouse, Rainbow Stage and Theatre Calgary.

ET CETERA Dianne has served on the Advisory Boards for Sheridan and Niagara Colleges.

Assistant Stage Manager Linsey Callaghan

Linsey Callaghan

ROYAL MTC Apprentice Stage Manager: Chimerica, Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Jersey Lily, The Seagull, A Christmas Story.

OTHER THEATRE Production Assistant: Romeo and Juliet, Fiddler on the Roof, The Three Musketeers, The Merchant of Venice (Stratford). Apprentice Stage Manager: Danny, King of the Basement, James and the Giant Peach (MTYP); Les Misérables (Rainbow); King Lear, The Beaux’ Stratagem, All My Sons (Stratford); Gifts of the Magi, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (Chemainus Theatre Festival); Initiation Trilogy (Electric Theatre Company). Upcoming: Assistant Stage Manager for The Birds and the Bees (PTE).

TRAINING Graduate of the National TheatreSchool’s Production Program.

Apprentice Stage Manager Katherine Dermott

Katherine Dermott

ROYAL MTC First engagement.

OTHER THEATRE Recent credits include: Macbeth, The Hypochondriac, Festival Theatre Production Assistant (Stratford). Anne & Gilbert: The Musical, Alice Through the Looking-Glass, The Sound of Music (NAC); Tosca, Madama Butterfly (Opera Lyra, Ottawa); This is War (GCTC); As You Like It, Hal & Falstaff, The Merry Wives of Windsor, Henry V (A Company of Fools); Pacino One Night Only (NAC).



"Director Christopher Newton and set/costume designer Christina Poddubiuk mount this show in rich, handsome yet nuanced style, of a piece with many superb performances..."- Winnipeg Free Press
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"Stage and screen veteran Fiona Reid is masterful as Elizabeth II..."-
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"The role demands a complicated stillness which Reid delivers with grace" - CBC
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"The Audience is a royal treat for both history enthusiasts and those that like a good chat" - Tourism Winnipeg 
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Royal costuming at Royal MTC
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"The play is a royal daydream" - New York Daily News 
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"Star gives Peter Morgan's new Queen Elizabeth play the royal treatment" - Entertainment Weekly
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"Queen Elizabeth II: Style through the ages" - ELLE UK
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"Style File: Queen Elizabeth II" - VOGUE
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Interview with Director Christopher Newton