Eatdrink #80 November/December 2019 - The Holiday Issue


The LOCAL food and drink magazine serving London, Stratford & Southwestern Ontario since 2007

eatdrink: The Local Food & Drink Magazine

November/December 2019 | 53



Mary Poppins is at The Grand for the Holidays


Imagine a five-year-old boy taken by his

grandmother to see his first live theatre

performance. It’s a musical extravaganza

at The Grand Theatre about the life of

Barnum — of circus fame. The child sits in

awe. His life in theatre has begun.

Imagine a four-year-old girl taken by her

mother to see her first live theatre performance

in 2019. It’s a musical extravaganza at The

Grand Theatre with her uncle as Bert, in Mary

Poppins this holiday season.

Her uncle was that five-year old boy. Mark

Uhre’s theatre career comes full circle November

26 to December 29 when he steps onto the

stage to perform for the next generation of

theatregoers, including his niece.

“It’s a great feeling to return to the place

where everything started. Growing up I always

loved coming

downtown during

the holidays,”

says Uhre in an

interview with

Eatdrink. “Mary

Poppins will be

my niece’s first

show so we are all

excited and pretty

emotional, as it is a

special story from

our own childhood,”

he adds.

Uhre’s first role was at the Grand in 1992. He

was 12 years old when he played in A Christmas

Carol, which starred the legendary Canadian

actor William Hutt. While studying at Beal

Secondary School in London in 1998, Uhre

starred as Tony in a High School Production of

West Side Story. “That was it. I started focusing

on theatre and music as a career, rather than

visual art. The Grand has been a huge part of

my development as an artist.”

And what a career! Uhre made it to

Broadway as Enjolras in Les Misérables in

2016. He says he has been very fortunate to

play major stages here in Canada, including

Stratford and Shaw, as well as in the U.K.

“When Broadway came along it was an

amazing surprise and was a really special time.

It also put a great deal into perspective for

Mark Uhre stars as Bert

in Mary Poppins, at The

Grand Theatre. He’s also

an artist; here he stands

in front of one of his

paintings (hanging in

Revel Cafe in Stratford).

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