The Wingfield Farm Series are 7 plays revolvling around the title character of Walt Wingffield, a former stockbroker-turned-farmer.
Canadian Dan Needle’s Wingfield Farm Series has been entertaining audiences for well over 20 years. An intimate and humorous look at rural life on the farm, the one-man play starring Rod Beattie doesn’t leave you wanting with a genius use of character and wit. The protagonist, Walt Wingfield is stockbroker city-boy who gets it in his head that he wants to be a farmer. He buys a 100-acre farm in the quaint township of Persephone and settles in, sounds easy enough right? As he soon finds out he finds that there is only so much one man can do with a couple of retired racehorses at the plow. Still, he embraces the less complicated life and forges ahead, everyday holding a new lesson. Delivered through a series of letters Walt writes to a newspaper editor friend about the trials and tribulations of his life as a farmer one can’t help but laugh at the antics of the elderly and antiquated town council or the helpful neighbours.
In the end the residents of Persephone band together. Beattie is a master of physical comedy and the transformation from character to character using mannerisms, ticks and voices is so complete it is like split personalities at it’s best. It is hard to believe that one man can play such a varied and rich ensemble of characters, but Beattie does it with surprising ease. If you haven’t seen The Wingfield plays you’re missing out, it’s a comedic gem, so don’t miss the chance to see it while it’s still available on CD and DVD.
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