ROD BEATTIE (actor) A veteran of fifteen seasons with the Stratford Festival (most recently in Wingfield's Inferno in the 2005 season) Rod Beattie is one of the most respected and versatile actors in Canadian theatre. His extensive credits include radio, television and live performances across Canada. Featured roles include Narcisse in The Passion of Narcisse Mondoux at London's Grand Theatre; Ed in Ed's Garage at the Grand Theatre, Manitoba Theatre Centre and Theatre Orangeville; Felix in The Odd Couple at Segal Centre, Montreal; Johnny Pateen Mike in The Cripple of Inishmaan at Theatre Calgary; Bill in The Love List and Greg in Sylvia at the Belfry Theatre, Victoria; John Proctor in The Crucible and Father Gustave in Blessings in Disguise at Manitoba Theatre Centre; the professor in Oleanna at the Grand Theatre and the National Arts Centre (opposite Sandra Oh) and Andy Ladd in an Ontario tour of Love Letters (opposite Martha Henry). Over the past thirty years Rod's name has become synonymous with the Wingfield series which has brought him acting awards, rave reviews and sold-out houses in Toronto, London, Stratford, Victoria, Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, Regina, Winnipeg, Ottawa, Saint John, Fredericton and a host of smaller communities across Canada. Rod and Walt made their American debuts to great acclaim at the Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park in 1994. Rod is the winnr of the 1991 - 92 "Dora" Award (best performance by an actor in a leading role) for his performance in the first three Wingfield plays.
"Beattie is astonishingly adept at transforming himself from one character to another in a matter of seconds, calling up echoes of a crotchety Walter Brennan, a gawky Jimmy Stewart or a flustered Bob Newhart."
-The Toronto Star
"With his man-next-door face - perfect for a character like Walt - Beattie flows to other roles with a twist of the lip, an arch of an eyebrow, a different bend in the back and a wonderful array of different voices."
-The Globe and Mail
DAN NEEDLES (playwright) Dan Needles spent half his childhood in the city and half on the family farm at Rosemont, Ontario. After university he went to work as editor of the local newspaper in Shelburne where he created the character of Walt Wingfield, the retired stockbroker turned farmer, who told about his adventures on the farm in a series of weekly letters to the editor. In 1985 Dan drew from these columns to write his first play Letter From Wingfield Farm. Wingfield's Progress followed in 1987, Wingfield's Folly in 1990, Wingfield Unbound in 1997, Wingfield On Ice in 2001, Wingfield's Inferno in 2005 and Wingfield Lost and Found in 2009. For fifteen years Dan delighted readers of Harrowsmith and Country Guide with his back page columns True Confessions from the Ninth Concession and Petunia Valley. He now writes the Larkspur Supper Club for Small Farm Canada and Fence Posts which appears in three publications, On the Bay, In the Hills and Watershed. Dan won the 2003 Leacock Medal for Humour for his book With Axe and Flask, the History of Persephone Township from Pre-Cambrian Times to the Present. His latest book Wingfield's World, a novelization of all seven Wingfield plays, was released in October, 2011. Dan's other plays include The Perils of Persephone, Ed's Garage, Team on the Hill, Baco Noir and The Last Christmas Turkey. In December, 2014, Dan was appointed Member of the Order of Canada by the Governor-General.
"Dan Needles has much the same gift for gentle comedy as England's James Herriot of All Creatures Great and Small glory."
-The Toronto Sun
"a kind of philosophical Will Rogers with a flair for the well told anecdote that is like the best of W.O. Mitchell, AND IT'S FUNNY!"
DOUGLAS BEATTIE (director) Douglas Beattie became an independent producer and director in 1979. His association with Dan Needles goes back to childhood summers spent on the farm. In addition to heading the Wingfield team Doug has been guest director at the Stratford Festival; the Belfry Theatre, Victoria; Lighthouse Festival, Port Dover; Theatre Orangeville; the Blyth Festival; the Piggery Theatre, North Hatley; Thousand Islands Playhouse; Gryphon Theatre, Barrie, and the Grand Theatre, London (The Passion of Narcisse Mondoux, Ed's Garage and The Perils of Persephone). He was consultant to Primedia's television production of Letter From Wingfield Farm which won the 1991 "Gemini" Award for best performing arts program and is co-executive producer of the Wingfield TV series. He is also founding Artistic Director of Pie in the Sky Productions (formerly Touchmark Theatre) and President of Douglas Beattie Theatrical Productions Ltd. which markets the CDs and DVDs of the Wingfield plays. (Click on "DVDs & CDs" above.)
"The third partner, invisible but important, is director Douglas Beattie, who keeps it all seeming simple, but actually being quite complex."
-The Toronto Star