Prairie Nurse tries to see the lighter side of finding one’s place in a new country.
Canadian playwright Marie Beath Badian gives the account of two newly-arrived Filipino nurses in Canada in 1967.
Purificacion Saberon (Puring) and Indepencia Uy (Penny) came to work at a small-town hospital in Arborfield, Saskatchewan.
Dutchess Cayetano plays Puring while Stephanie Sy plays Penny in this romantic comedy that has also taken the stage in other Canadian cities after it premiered at the Blyth Festival in Ontario in 2013.
Guesting in “Good Morning Philipines” CKJS 810 AM, Dutchess said the play is close to “home” that the Filipino community can relate to. It revolves around a plot where a hospital laboratory technician fell love with one of the nurses but due to their similar looks, the guy was not able able to tell them apart.
Stephanie expressed excitement and happiness having to play character of a Filipino in Prairie Nurse for the first time in her journey as theatre actor. She believes the story is important at this time because it tells a bit about history.
We now wonder who the guy ended up with –was it Penny or Puring? Or he got into too much trouble?
Dutchess and Stephanie also boast about how costumes play huge importance in depicting a play that has a period set in the early 70s and late 60s.
Prairie Nurse is fictional but is based on the true story of Badian’s mother’ who is a nurse who immigrated to Saskatchewan as part of the first wave of Filipino nurses who came to Canada in the late 60s.
The play kicks off Prairie Theatre Exchange’s 2018-2019 season. It also stars Pamela Halstead, Kristian Jordan, Rayna Masterton, Ross McMillan and Robb Paterson.