Beneath Springhill: The Maurice Ruddick Story

Beneath Springhill: The Maurice Ruddick Story

A Musical Story of Hope

July 19 - 31
Firehall Theatre

"Way way down with a shovel and a pick
I'll be digging coal till I'm old and sick
And I tell my kids I do it all for you
If I dig coal you won't have to dig coal too"




Created and Performed by Beau Dixon
Lyrics and Music by Rob Fortin and Susan Newman
Directed and Developed by Linda Kash

  • This is a powerful story of a Canadian hero, told through song like never before.

    BENEATH SPRINGHILL is the incredible story of Maurice Ruddick, “the singing miner,” an African-Canadian who survived nine days underground during the historic Springhill mining disaster of 1958. This multi-award-winning one-man show recalls the events during the disaster, the effect it had on the rural Canadian community, and the racial tension that grew from it. The play is a celebration of hope, courage and community.

    “This is what theatre is about.”

    “A celebration of the human spirit…”
    - Calgary Sun

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  • Firehall Theatre Logo

    Playing at the Firehall Theatre
    from July 19 - 31

    Firehall Theatre Performance Times
    All Tuesday performances start at 7:30 pm
    Wednesday to Saturday at 8:00 pm
    Matinees Friday and Saturday at 2:30 pm (starting the Friday after opening)

    Running Time: 70 minutes with no intermission

  • Cast

    Beau Dixon


    Director - Linda Kash
    Set Designer - Gabe Robinson
    Lighting Designer - Rob McInnis
    Sound Designer - Beau Dixon
    Stage Manager - Marie-Claude Valiquet


    For the Playhouse: Don’t Dress For Dinner;
    Elsewhere: Farewell, My Lovely (Vertigo Theatre); Motherf@#!er With The Hat (Alberta Theatre Projects); Othello (Mysterious Entity); The Real McCoy (4th Line Theatre); Next To Normal (Tarragon). Selected writing credits: From Here to Africville, Once A Flame (Factory Theatre); Other People’s Heaven, FreedomBells (Heritage Pavilion Stage).  Apprentice music director for Dora Award Winning Caroline, Or Change (Acting Up Stage/ Obsidian Theatre); Ragtime, Trouble In Tahiti (Shaw Festival). 

    Beau has been inducted into the Peterborough, ON Pathway of Fame for his leadership in the arts. He is founding artistic director of Firebrand Theatre and has recorded three solo albums under his name. 


    For the Playhouse: Debut 
    Elsewhere:  Linda has co created several shows for TV including My Talk Show, Go Girl!, and The Joe Blow Show, which she also directed. 
    Upcoming: Linda returns to the Playhouse in September to star in You Are Here: A New Musical. This summer, she will direct Colin Mochrie and Hypnotist Asad Mecci in Hyprov (Just For Laughs UK, Montreal, and Edinburgh). 

    Linda Kash began her professional life at The Second City in Toronto. She has also appeared in a number of plays in Canada. Linda has directed for various theatre companies across Ontario, including The Second City. Linda is primarily known as Canada’s beloved Kraft Philadelphia Cream Cheese Angel, which became one of Canadian advertising’s most successful campaigns, running for 16 years. Her greatest production to date are her 3 beloved children.


    For the Playhouse: Debut
    Elsewhere: Co-founder and technical director for Back Meadows Music Festival; Lighting designer for Othello, Beside Herself (Mysterious Entity Theatre); Falling Awake, Between the Sheets (New Stage Theatre Company); Wearable Art Fashion Show (Public Energy); Last Green Hill (4th Line Theatre); Technical director of Market Hall Performing Arts Centre. 

    Rob McInnis_web


    For the Playhouse: Debut

    Gabe studied fine arts at the University of Toronto. He has always had a passion and love for visual art. He has done art installations and set design for 4th Line Theatre (Millbrook, ON) and Market Hall (Peterborough, ON). He has self-published a book of poetry and is a carpenter presently living on his farm in Lakefield, Ontario.


    For the Playhouse: Debut
    Elsewhere: Church Basement Ladies: A Mighty Fortress Is Our Basement (Victoria Playhouse Petrolia); Scarberia (Young People’s Theatre); Panamania North Stage (Toronto 2015 PanAm Games); The Sound of Cracking Bones / Le son des os qui craquent, (Pleiades Theatre); Apocalypsis, Tomorrow’s Snow (Luminato); Museum of Nature Re-opening & Celebration (Momentum Planning & Communications); The Immigrant (Harold Green Jewish Theatre Co.); Arcadia (Shaw Festival/ Mirvish Productions).
     Upcoming: The Container (Theatre Fix); Beneath Springhill: The Maurice Ruddick Story (Collingwood Theatre). 

    A graduate of Ryerson Theatre School, Marie-Claude apprenticed at the Shaw Festival, Tarragon Theatre, Ross Petty Productions, and Soulpepper.

  • Photos

    Photos by Stephen Wild.

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    Click image to watch video!

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  • Press

    Dixon gives engaging, moving performance
    Kingston Whig-Standard. July 21, 2016 
    In October 1958, at the Springhill mine in Cumberland County, Nova Scotia, an underground earthquake, or “bump,” trapped 174 miners two miles below… Read More

    Beneath Springhill: The Maurice Ruddick Story
    WWNY TV – 7 News / Fox 28. July 21, 2016 

    Maurice Ruddick is a Canadian folk hero.  Ruddick, known as the singing miner, was an African Canadian with twelve children, when in 1958 the Springhill… Read More

    Music And Drama at the Thousand Islands Playhouse
    The Gananoque Reporter. July 28, 2016 
    Whether you are heading to Beneath Springhill or Into the Woods, the Thousand Islands Playhouse has wonderful times in store. Beneath Springhill is the story of… Read More

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