From Fire to Flood


259 pages
Contains Photos, Illustrations, Bibliography, Index
ISBN 0-921833-79-2
DDC 792'.097127





Reviewed by David E. Kemp

David E. Kemp, a former professor of drama at Queen’s University, is
the author of The Pleasures and Treasures of the United Kingdom.


The first chapter of this fascinating book describes how Manitoba’s
first theatrical production, which took place in 1867, nearly set the
town on fire. Winnipeg was not yet a city, with only some 100 people
living in the area that would become the unified City of Winnipeg in
1971. In subsequent chapters, we see just how far theatre has grown in
Manitoba since that time. In sparkling prose, Longfield explores and
sets in context every facet of theatre in Manitoba. There are chapters
on playwrights, criticism, the Fringe Festival, the universities,
political theatre, and theatre’s golden age. Individual theatre
companies such as the Manitoba Theatre Centre and Prairie Theatre
Exchange are documented historically and analyzed with respect to
policy, aim, and significance. An excellent bibliography and a complete
record of productions round out this provocative, lively, and
exhaustively researched volume. From Fire to Flood deserves a place on
the shelves of school and university libraries across the country.


Longfield, Kevin., “From Fire to Flood,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed July 16, 2024,