The Red Squad, Police harassment of theatrical activities in the thirties. Out-of-work men and women from Vancouver to Montreal coming together to produce pro-union plays such as Odet's Waiting for Lefty and anti-war plays such as Irwin Shaw's Bury the Dead. The Progressive Arts Club movement. Worker's Theatre, Toronto's Theatre of Action. Out of this milieu came many whose names would subsequently become part of Canada's cultural establishment — Johnny Wayne, Frank Shuster, Lou Applebaum, Lou Jacobi, Basya Hunter, Ben Lennick, Sydney Newman, Syd Banks, Lorne Greene. For the first time, the full story of this fascinating theatrical period is told with affection, humour, and nostalgia. Written by one of the founders of Theatre of Action, Stage Left is a moving theatrical and social memoir which documents for the first time this most unique of Canadian theatrical episodes.
About the author
Toby Gordon Ryan studied drama at the Artef studio in New York. She returned to Canada where she became a founding member of two major theatres in the 1930s: Toronto Workers' Theatre and Theatre of Action. A member of Ontario's Council of Drama and Education, she lives and teaches in Toronto.