Live Theatre, Concerts & Events

Hit the jackpot with Bingo Ladies

A New Musical by Grant Tilly
Directed by C.Lee Bates

Sure, it’s the simplest of games. But when the stakes are high, the game itself is just a backdrop to the quirky, often thorny, always loony world of Bingo.

Inside the hallowed halls of Duke’s Bingo Barn, where the hit musical comedy Bingo Ladies comes to life, it’s Friday night and the gloves are off! This is the story of three ladies who live and breathe the thrills and heartbreak of competitive Bingo. There’s Irene, the wily curmudgeon who always seems to win despite her physical limitations; we suspect that the oxygen tank she trails behind her is a consequence of years of holding a Bingo dauber in one hand and a cigarette in the other. Then there’s man-hungry Sandi, who lusts after Lou the bingo caller, wishing that just once she could be the number he calls. And finally poor Carol, desperate for a win, who does the unthinkable and steals Irene’s lucky spot at the table. Hell hath no fury like a Bingo addict whose lucky troll has been displaced by a jealous competitor…

Director C. Lee Bates, the creative force behind Bingo Ladies and other hit Studio Theatre musicals like The Drowsy Chaperone, and this spring’s phenomenal 9 to 5: The Musical, says she’s been looking forward to working with a smaller cast, in this case, a super-talented group of just four actors.

“I’m really loving directing this smaller, more character-driven story of four ordinary people dealing with everyday problems and victories,” she says. “Canadian playwright Grant Tilly has created a play full of romance, death, betrayal, secretiveness, and of course fantastic humour, in a script that never takes its foot off the pedal.”

Bingo Ladies stars seasoned musical talents Adam Bond, Keegan Carr and Lindsay Rewi, all fresh from this spring’s smash hit 9 To 5, The Musical, along with veteran performer Barb Guthrie, one of the stars of the musical version of Little Women.

Studio Theatre Productions is co-producing Bingo Ladies with indie women productions as a fundraiser for the Jillian O’Connor Family Fund. For more information about Jillian, visit

Bingo Ladies premieres Thursday, August 18th at the Studio Theatre for seven performances, August 18, 19, 20, 26 and 27 at 7:30 pm, and August 21 and 28 at 2 pm.


Tickets are $28 (cash only) at the Book Nook, 60 Gore St. E, and $28 (plus a $2 convenience fee) at Shadowfax, 67 Foster St., which accepts in-store, phone, online and credit card purchases (613-267-6817;

Don’t forget that season passes for the Studio Theatre’s 2016/2017 season of outstanding live theatre, starting in September, are on sale now at the Studio Theatre box office, Saturday mornings from 10 ’til noon, and at Shadowfax. The Studio Theatre’s new season begins September 22nd with the grandmother of all comedies, Over The River And Through The Woods.

Bring along your troll to the sparkling musical Bingo Ladies.

Actors Lindsay Rewi (Carol), Barb Guthrie (Irene), and Keegan Carr (Sandi) rehearse a scene from the musical comedy Bingo Ladies, premiering August 18 at 7:30 at the Studio Theatre.

The show is a fundraiser for the Jillian O’Connor Family Fund.
Article by Paul Joyce / Photo by Bruce Raby