Production captures the Bible in two hours

The Big Picture, by Toronto playwright Dennis Hassell, is a stirring, epic drama that tells the story of God’s relationship to humankind as it is told in the Bible.

The production, presented by Burnt Thicket Theatre and the Arts Engine, runs March 13-14 at Scott Block Theatre (4816 – 50 Ave). Showtime is 7 p.m.

The sweeping narrative arc of this monumental play follows God’s promise to humanity, starting with creation, through the Old Testament, to the gospel of Jesus and right through to Revelation. And organizers say it all happens imaginatively in one theatrical event.

The foundational stories of the Bible are distilled into this compelling theatrical experience, that has garnered rave reviews from critics and audiences across the country.

Originally produced by Brookstone Performing Arts, the play has had a professional theatrical run in Toronto, and toured nationally under the sponsorship of the Canadian Bible Society. This fresh new production brings the Bible to life in an unforgettable theatrical experience.

It is powered by The Arts Engine and directed by Tom Carson, who directed the national tour ten years ago.

In 2012 The Big Picture played at Fire Exit Theatre in Calgary, King’s University College in Edmonton, toured Ontario, and spent a week in the Walmer Centre Theatre in Toronto.

The story features Jason Hildebrand – part storyteller and part creative catalyst, Hildebrand works extensively as an actor, producer, filmmaker and communication coach.

He is most recognized for his acclaimed solo performances Blue Like Jazz // Live (based on the New York Times best-selling book), The Prodigal Trilogy, Life of David and Kingdom of Herod. Currently he tours across Canada in Fish Eyes and is developing a new production with jazz pianist Mike Janzen based on author Greg Paul’s book, Close Enough to Hear God Breathe.

Arthur Wachnik is a graduate of the University of Windsor acting program. Last year marked his return to the stage after taking a break for several years to work as an urban missionary and a musician.

He starred in last year’s Toronto Passion Play and most recently in The KJV: The Bible Show. Arthur’s first music album, Least of These, garnered critical acclaim and he has performed around the world. His upcoming record is due out in early 2012.

Andrea Cross’s film and television credits include the lead role in the feature film A Way From Here (Lofty Films), Shadow Government (Cloud Ten Productions, based on Grant Jeffery’s book), Following After (Moviola Channel), and Zero Hour: Flight 93 (Discovery Channel). She was lead dancer in The Sun, Moon and Waves (BRAVO) and has appeared in numerous commercials.

Theatre credits include The Big Picture and The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (Brookstone) and the lead role in Fen (North York Performing Arts Centre).

Finally, director Tom Carson has appeared on stages from Montreal to Vancouver, winning the hearts of audiences and garnering critical acclaim throughout the country. Tom’s direction has brought to life a wide range of productions for both adults and children, and his work has been nominated for a number of awards. Tom has directed numerous memorable productions such as 2000 Candles for the 2000 Candles Collective, Life of David, Job Alive and Blue Like Jazz // Live for Jason Hildebrand and The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, The Big Picture, and Shell Game for Brookstone Performing Arts.

For five years, Carson held the position of General and Artistic Manager of Smile Theatre in Toronto.

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