On May 7th, 2006, the first official Road to Avonlea cast reunion was held.
I would like to thank Karen for letting me use her information and pictures. Please do not use the information or pictures without receiving permission.
The actors that were there were Jackie Burroughs (Hetty King), Mag Ruffman (Olivia King Dale), R. H. Thompson (Jasper Dale), Michael Mahonen (Gus Pike), Marilyn Lightstone (Muriel Stacey Pettibone), and Alex and Ryan Floyd (Daniel King). Director and prodcuer, Kevin Sullivan, and composer, John Welsman, were also there.
The event was taped. As of now, I do not know if it will be released to the public.
There was talk of a possibility of another Road to Avonlea film to be made. According to Mag Ruffman, all the cast is open to the idea, and Kevin Sullivan seems open to the idea.
There is a possiblity of another cast reunion in 2007. This reunion would take place in the same week of the Avonlea Convention 2007.
Kevin Sullivan spoke about the aspects (sets and costumes) and how he gathered the actors first, and then developed the script and story lines. He emphasized that the character development was dependent on what the actors did with them. For example, Mag Ruffman is a lot like Olivia, R.H. Thompson gave Jasper his stutter (wasn't written into the script), and Michael Mahonen made up Gus's accent.
The the cast when on stage for questions and answers and told their favoritie episodes, and what they were currently doing.
Mag Ruffman: Tug of War Why: Because she had to give birth.
Michael Mahonen: Evelyn Why: It gave Cedric Smith a chance to play something other than the protector of the family
Ian Clark: Hearts and Flowers and Ah... Sweet Mystery of Life
Jackie Burroughs: can't remember
R.H. Thompson: any episode where he got beaten up by Hetty and loved by Olivia
What the actors talked about:
Marilyn Lightstone: She talked about her photography exhibits
Michael Mahonen: He talked about his newest movie about Falun Gong persecution in China. He also demonstrated Gus's accent.
R.H. Thompson: He talked about Best Laid Plans and said that it was a great opportunity that Kevin gave him, and he's ashamed that he didn't work harder on it. He also knocked his chair off his stage, because he enjoyed getting to be clumsy as Jasper.
Mag Ruffman: She talked about how Jackie is nothing like her character, Hetty King. She said that everybody else was pretty similar to his character.
Jackie Burroughs and Mag Ruffman talked about their corsets. Mag says they leave you quite squished together, even after you take it off. They also talked about their hair which was augmented by the use of something that the don't know what it was.
Pictures courtesy of Karen
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I would like to thank Vanessa for letting me use her information. Please, do not use this information without receiving permission!
The program started by Mag Ruffman asking who came the farthest. A person from Hungary came the farthest and won a cast jacket. The second fartherst person, who is from California, also won a jacket.
Kevin Sullivan talked about the making of Road to Avonlea. He said that the creation came about because Colleen Dewhurst (Marilla Cuthbert) wanted to do a show, and he thought that it was a good idea.The first episode shot was The Materializing of Duncan McTavish. He said that he used that episode is how he establish Hetty King. He mentioned that the devolpment of Jasper and Olivia was planned to begin in The Story Girl Earns Her Name. Jasper's awkwardness and stuttering was created by R.H. Thompson (Jasper Dale). Kevin also talked about the making of Gus and Felix and how good their chemistry was.
He talked about the locations in Ontario that he used for filming Green Gables and shooting scenes in a studio.
He explained how the opening of Wind at My Back used his own family home movies. The home movies influenced the home move episode of Road to Avonlea ((Jasper's) Home Movie.
Kevin also mentioned that Momento Mori was his favorite episode.
The Question and Answer period then opened up and Mag Ruffman explained why certain actors weren't there.
Sarah Polley (Sara Stanley): She was doing European press for one of her moives.
Cedric Smith (Alec King): He was at his cottage.
Zachary Bennett (Felix King): He was doing a film in Winnipeg.
Gema Zamprogna (Felicity King Pike): She is nine months pregnant.
Lally Cadeau (Janet King): She was at a baby shower.
David Fox (Clive Pettibone): He was doing a play.
Molly Atkinson (second Cecily King): can't remember
Marilyn Lightstone (Muriel Stacey Pettibone): just a sporadic guess star, and anytime she was on, it was great
Mag Ruffman (Olivia King Dale): Tug of War Why: She's never given birth in real life and didn't know what to do. She said that she did research at a library and watched a video called "Emergency Birth." She said a favorite memory is kissing David Fox.
Alex and Ryan Floyd (Daniel King): They said they didn't remember much. The things they remember are little things like being rescued by Bruce Greenwood (Caleb Stokes).
John Welsman (composer): Old Quarrels, Old Love Why: It was his favorite episode to score.
Michael Mahonen (Gus Pike): Evelyn Why: It allowed him to see Cedric Smith acting at his best
Jackie Burroughs (Hetty King): doesn't really have one
R. H. Thompson: anything that allowed him to get beat by Hetty, stutter, and do physical comedy
Ian Clark (Simon Tremayne): Hearts and Flowers and Ah... Sweet Mystery of Life
Ian Clark: He could have to to the White Sands with his parents a long time ago (White Sands is actually Dalvay by the Sea). When he got to Avonlea he didn't realize the exterior of Dalvay by the Sea was the same exterior of White Sands and at first didn't believe the crew. He said that while he was on vacation at Dalvay by the Sea with his family, he encountered a family, and the daughter was hoping to see Mr. Tremayne, Felix, and Gus. Her mother told her daughter that they are just characters from a TV show and wouldn't be there. When the daughter saw Ian, it made her day.
Alex and Ryan Floyd siad that their dad took a lot of video of the show, and Mag Ruffman suggested that it might be shown at the next reunion.
When I (Vanessa) asked Marilyn Lightstone if she minded being known as Miss Stacy, she said no and told a funny story about how she was walking on a street one day and some one yelled, "Mrs. Fishbone", meaning Mrs. Pettibone.
Again, I would like to thank Karen for letting me use her information and pictures, and thank Vanessa for letting me use her information.
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