Adrianna has written several historic dramas inspired by Toronto history as well as a story of bereavement based on her personal story of losing her brother to suicide. Currently she is working on a staged Western called Scarred Leather with Whiskey Ginger Collective.
Having had the pleasure of taking Nightwood Theatre’s Playwriting Master Class in the spring of 2012 with Bryony Lavery (playwright of award-winning pieces such as Frozen and Stockholm), Adrianna enjoyed Lavery’s approach to writing and thanks her for her insight.
Chronological index of shows
Pratties and Point (2009) Performed at The Gibson House Museum winter 2009
The Story of Catherine Flinn – A Storytelling and Hearth-cooking Experience for Adults
The year of 1847 was a year of turmoil and pain for Ireland. A mass exodus due to an overwhelming famine forced people like Catherine Flynn to find solace across the ocean. Finding work in Toronto with the Gibson family, she arrives for her first day of work as a spinster… Theatre-in-education specialist Adrianna Prosser’s transformation into Catherine Flinn will fascinate, touch your heart and entertain while you immerse yourself in this 1800s environment.
…Adrianna’s research into diaries and documents of the Irish experience has enabled her to create a living Catherine whom visitors will come to admire and care about. Hear tales of the famine and what it was like to travel to Upper Canada. Catherine’s earlier life would have been dramatically different from the relative middle class comfort of the Gibson household you will see around you.
Rebellious Women: Teaspoons Raised (2010) Performed at The Gibson House Museum spring 2011 & 175th Upper Canada Rebellion Anniversary edition Winter 2012
November 1851: In the front parlour of Mrs. Gibson’s newly built home in Willow Dale, a table is set with cake and tea. Mrs. Gibson and her guests: Mrs. Cummer and Mrs. Sheppard, have gathered. Gibson House hosts the three unique women of Willow Dale whose lives were touched by the events of the 1837 Rebellion. Based on letters and journals, discover history thorough the perspective of the wives, daughters, and mothers of those men who fought for change on Yonge Street.
A Secret Life of a Schoolmistress (2011) Performed at Zion Schoolhouse winter 2011 & Spring 2012
Hattie Dickson reflects on a lifetime in the classroom as a Schoolmistress. Share her triumphs, her failures and the secrets she kept hidden as she says goodbye to teaching. Based on real accounts of life in Canada in the early 20th century. An Interview with Adrianna by Live With Culture about her show and her experience developing it.
“Congratulations on a great performance. My grandmother was really moved by the play. On the drive home she told me a number of stories from her own life that she had never told me before, each clearly brought to mind by the events in the play.”
-Audience member S. Fairley, 2011 performance
“…truly wonderful work.”
-Ann-Marie Macdonald, Canadian Author and Playwright
“Congratulations! Solid script, engaging audience interaction, powerful range of emotions. . . . Really really good work, Adrianna! I am sorry I couldn’t stay for my detention, but I very much enjoyed being picked on!”
– James Ashby, Co-Artistic Director of Bricoteer Experiments Theatre & VP of OPA
“…a compelling and engaging story of a Canadian schoolmistress in the early 20th Century. A great performance by the cast, and the historic Zion Schoolhouse creates an authentic setting for the play. I very much enjoyed being a student in Miss Dickson’s class!”
– Lila Karim, Managing Director of North York Arts
Everything But the Cat… (2010/11) Performed excerpts at Canadian Stage’s Ideas and Creation Festival 2010, Storytelling at Caplansky’s for Suicide Prevention Week 2011, as a staged reading at The New Ideas Festival 2013, as part of the Soulo Festival 2014, and on tour to high schools.
A not-so-one-woman show dealing with dating, relationships, and loss – the kind that you didn’t see coming. Dealing with mental health issues as those around us make heavy choices, we are forced to ask ourselves the same questions: To be or Not to be… Is the answer All You Can Eat Sushi? From the petty to the heavy; life is full of choices. Explore how suicide touches the lives of those left behind and how loss is sometimes greater than leaving your umbrella on the subway.
“You certainly touched me, even with our age gap… Your injection of humour developed such a web and flow that kept the interest up and sadness at bay but the message sharp.”
-Rae, Audience member of NIF2013
“Words escape me…and believe me, that doesn’t happen very often” -D. Otten-Lawley, Audience member of NIF2013
Listen to the opening of the show here:
War for Dessert (2012) *guest scene written by Liam Hanebury – Performed at Zion Schoolhouse for October History Month, St. Lawrence Hall Town Hall invited performance for City of Toronto
June 25, 1812, in the dining hall of Fort George on the banks of the Niagara River. British officers from the 41st Regiment gather to share a jovial meal in friendship with their American counterparts. By the end of dinner, however, the two groups discover that they are to meet again soon – as enemies on the battlefield. Find out the Who – What – When – Where – WHY about the War of 1812, complete with multimedia, film, puppets & live stage action.
Sometime All Full (2013) As part of The Sonnet Show for Humber River Shakespeare Co. performed at Montgomery’s Inn Museum
Inspired by Sonnet 75, Adrianna writes us a 14 minute play about the Irish Famine of 1847. The blight has Ireland held captive, but those already in Upper Canada can feel the pain from abroad. Family and friends are seeking shelter in the west and send letters for help. But what happens when their pleas are not heard? Why has no one at Montgomery’s Inn reached out to their loved ones in Ireland?
2 Weeks to Paradise (2015) Dark Comedy Web Series *in development
We’ll follow Deanna as she struggles to put her life back together amidst the chaos of everyday life and keeping her job while her ‘Guardian Angel’ obnoxiously tries to walk her through the grieving process. With her personal life closing in and quirky co-workers bursting at the seams, will her heavenly help turn out to stop the hurt or exacerbate it? Together the ensemble cast explore what it means to lose a loved one, and more importantly what it is to live on afterwards. It’s bereavement like you’ve never seen it before. So go ahead, live a little, after death.
Scarred Leather (2019) a Haunted Western, as part of Whiskey Ginger Collective‘s New Works Festival, performed at Red Sandcastle Theatre
Scarred Leather is a supernatural Western that sends you back in time to Canada in 1847 when ghosts walked with you and your gun holster. “You can’t beat Death, and you sure as hell can’t cheat Death, but one day you might see plain what Death truly is…” Read Adrianna’s playwright notes here.