The Bloody Assizes

1812 NEWS

March 20, 2013

By Ian Mather

awaiting his fate

The Judge advocate Reads the charges as the accused listened in disgust

Employees from Parks Canada set the stage for an interactive play  called The Bloody Assizes. Based on a series of trials that took place during the War of 1812.

This trial was a little less harsh and very interactive as the audience members were recruited to be members of the Jury. This trial took place at The Laura Secord Homestead located in Niagara on the Lake, Ontario.


Caroline McCormick

The evening began with Caroline McCormick, President of The Friends Of Laura Secord and a direct descendant of Laura Secord.  She spoke about the Laura Secord Legacy Trail. The trail recreates the walk that Laura Secord took in 1813 from her home  in Niagara on the Lake to DeCew House in Thorold.

Further information and full details can be found on the Friends of Laura Secord Website

http://www.niagaragreenbelt.com/fls/index.html

The play got underway with the Judge Advocate General:  played by Scott Finlay reading the charges to the accused James Honecker: played by Peter Martin. After the accused is seated Members from the audience were selected and questioned to see if they were suitable jurors. Finlay did a great job questioning the prospective jurors and giving both the jurors and the audience a good laugh.

jury selection 2 jury selection 3 jury selection 4 jury selection

the cast

The cast of The Bloody Assizes:

Judge Advocate General:  Scott Finlay
Sonia Lampman: Sonia Steckley
James Honecker: Peter Martin
Corporal Peter Jones: Peter Mitchell
Elizabeth White:  Elizabeth LeBlanc

questioning the corpoal questioning the plaintiff questioning the accused 2

The Judge listened to testimony from the plaintiff, witnesses and the accused before the audience members passed judgment on James Honecker.

The audience were asked to get into groups to come up with their verdict.

crowd shot

reading the verdict

The judge reads one of the verdicts as James Honecker listens somewhat unconcerned.

The Cast did a great job and the audience interaction really brought out the humorous element.

Hopefully Parks Canada and the Niagara Parks Commission will add a few more of these audience precipitation plays about the War of 1812.

All Images and Video ©Ian Mather 2013

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