This morning CBC played a documentary entitled, “Small Time Stories: From the Tale of a Town – Queen Street West.” The radio documentary was based on the work done to compile the multimedia interactive play Tale of a Town that focuses on the history of the Queen Street West neighbourhood in Toronto. The radio production provided an interesting look into some of Queen Street West’s more prominent buildings and past residents.
The premise behind the production is very similar to a historical walking tour. The show takes the audience on a promenade-style tour of Queen West by a fictional condo developer, which allows theater to be intermingled with built history and local memories of the area.
The idea of incorporating theater into history isn’t anything new – reenactments and many living history sites have been doing this for years. However, Tale of a Town attempts to combine theater, oral history, built heritage, local history, and music. I’m interested to know if similar productions have been undertaken in other cities or venues.
Photo credit: rachel in wonderland