Why I Direct

I love directing. I’ve loved it since I took my first stab at it back in 1990something.

I started in community theatre, where I watched others in charge of the shows I was in and said, “Hell, I can do that!” A lot of chutzpah for somebody who was only 22 at the time, but I didn’t let that deter me. In rapid succession, I took on some of the most complicated and known shows in theatre. I even put the Titanic on stage. I loved every minute of it. Then I took an extended break, and when I came back, was surprised to find that I loved it all over again.

There is something about watching actors breathe life into a script that you’ve read fifty times before auditions even start. Or a script that doesn’t really seem that funny on the page, but you cast the actors who can make you laugh while they read for the part. It’s even more magical when, just before you move into the theatre, they can still make you smile. Then make your friends laugh. Then total strangers. And, hopefully, reviewers.

When it works, you feel like you can take on the world. When it’s tough, you buckle down and do the best you can for your cast to figure out how to make it work. And somehow, it always does. It may not be how you pictured it, but not only does it all turn out, sometimes it’s leaps and bounds beyond what you first envisioned.

And then you turn over the reins, and let them go to work in front of an audience, where they shine. And while my job is done, I love watching them perform, and to see how an audience reacts to them.

That’s why I do it. And I’ll do it as long as the theatre will have me.

Meet the Cast of Haywire

Here they are – the cast of Haywire, opening September 17th at Metro Theatre in Vancouver.


From left to right: Mark ‘Sparky’ McDonald as Jamie, Daryl Hutchings as Alec, Amy Rhead as Liz, Sarah Harlow as Maggie, Joan Koebel as Phoebe, and Aidan Barker as Mandy.

For tickets and info, visit Metro Theatre.

Also, another shot of the cast including our understudy, Peter Pearson.


The Book is Great, But What About the Beach?

Relaxing and reading at the beach

A friend of mine told me recently that my book Letters to Helen is a great beach read. This got me to thinking…we always hear about the latest books that are great beach reads, but we never talk about the beaches to read it on.

There are certainly lots to choose from! Some made up of pebbles, others of sand so soft it’s like flour. My favourite is Kits Beach in Vancouver – right in the middle of the city, and just great in summer or winter. I polled my friends for some suggestions, and these are some of their favourites:

“The New Golden Beach on the island of Paros, Greece. Great windsurfing/ regular surfing. Or the beaches of Rio de Janeiro – beautiful and hot. Spiaggia del Fornillo on the Amalfi coast was a people beach surrounded by beautiful scenery as its at the bottom of Positano which is built up into the mountains and cliffs above in rows of beautifully colored houses. Or my favorite was laying on the beach on Easter Island. Fresh fish empanadas, coconuts right out of the tree, and clear blue waters.”
– Heather, Brooklyn, NY

“Alice Lake by Squamish BC. It’s absolutely beautiful with the mountains and trees
– Colleen, Leduc, AB

“The beach out front of Casa Del Mar in Aruba. Super hot but with a lovely breeze coming off the ocean. The water is clear and the waves they are a Rollin!!!
– Peter, Calgary, AB

“Jolly beach on Antigua, or any beach there. There are 365 to choose from. The beach is beautiful and clean, and the waters are crystal clear and warm.
– Leonard, Leduc, AB

“Baker Beach. It’s more of an adult beach… No sand, but lots of nice logs to lounge on.”
– Carolyn, Salt  Spring Island, BC

“Cortez Island.There is white sand and beautiful quiet beaches that you have all to yourself.A place where you can feel the wonder of the universe.A place where your problems feel like a tiny grain of sand in the big picture.
– Rebecca, North Vancouver, BC

Haad Yuan in Ko Pha Ngan, Thailand. Because it is beautiful and isolated (at least was isolated 8 years ago :)))
– Lilya, Vancouver, BC

Beddis Beach on Salt Spring! It’s kind of a trade off – very cold waters but a really nice, sandy beach!
– Abigail, Salt Spring Island, BC

So there you go – lots of great suggestions to take your new summer book to this year! Feel free to leave your favourites in the comments.

I’m Ba-aaack!

Marilyn waving to the crowd
Marilyn waving to the crowd (source: giphy.com)

I know some of you have been wondering where the original kaytroth.com went, but wonder no longer! Here it is, new and improved and in a format that I actually like!

This is a work in progress of course, but it’s also the place to find the latest about the creative stuff that I am up to. Theatre, books, TV & film – you can find it all here. Feedback is welcomed, but remember – misbehaviour means no cookies for you. Enjoy!