The Covid-19 pandemic has forced local theatre company Les Non-Coupables to cancel the 10th season of the play “La Dernière Pendaison”.
This decision was taken in conjunction with the Board of Directors of the L’Orignal Old Jail. For the past nine years, the theatre was presented for one month at the Old Jail and every evening was sold out. Guy Rouleau, spokes person of Les Non-Coupables was immensely disappointed to not be able to celebrate the 10th season of the play but acknowledges there was no other possible decision. Mr. Rouleau stated “each of us in the play has benefited from this wonderful adventure, but now is the time to irrevocably lower the curtain on a production that has risen to the top of the great amateur shows of French Ontario.”
L’Orignal Old Jail and the troop shared the profits with groups in the community. Approximately $70,000 has been shared with food banks, snow suit funds, Prescott and Russell Community Services, lunches in local schools, Miriam Centre, literacy campaigns, SFOA Autism – Prescott-Russell, homework assistance and other organizations.
Louise Bédard, Chair of the Board of Directors of the L’Orignal Old Jail, stated that “the professionalism, dedication and enthusiasm of each member of the Troupe during these nine years, their unwavering commitment to the community will be remember for years to come. As well, this popular theatre production enabled the former prison to make itself known outside the region in addition to animate this heritage site.
The Old Jail wishes to extend a special thank you to the Attorney General’s office which allowed for the last act of the play the use of Canada’s oldest courtroom still in operation in 2020. With this permission, theatre-goers experienced in a poignant manner the trials of the last two men to be hanged at the L’Orignal Jail.
To all those who contributed directly or indirectly to the success of this project, to the 19 actors and comedians, to people from all over who travelled to see our theatre production and to locals who came in large numbers to encourage this dedicated theatre group, organizers say: THANK YOU!