The Dream Life of Teresa Harris




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Teresa Harris is such an inspiration I think the play, THE DREAM LIFE OF TERESA HARRIS. with its cast of 15,  should be brought into the schools!  History comes to life.


March 4 launched Penn Kemp’s script of The Dream Life of Teresa Harris and the CD, The Dream Life of Teresa Harris: a Sound Opera. Performance with musicians Mary Ashton, Panayiotis Giannarapis and Penn Kemp.

Masonville Library, 30 N Centre Rd, London, ON N5X 3W1. Contact: Jennifer Quinton, Branch Supervisor, Masonville Branch London Public Library, 519-660-4646, 519-661-5100 ext 2036,

Sponsored by London Arts Council, London Public Library and Playwrights Guild of Canadian . With thanks to Eldon House Heritage Museum and a CAIP grant from LAC!

The Dream Life of Teresa Harris is available for sale on line ($12) and in print from
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Penn’s reading was sponsored by Playwrights Guild of Canada and the Canada Council.

The Dream Life of Teresa Harris was first performed as a processional play at historic Eldon House Heritage Museum!

Virtually unchanged since the 19th century, Eldon House is London’s oldest residence and contains family heirlooms, furnishings and priceless treasures of the Harris family. Built in 1834, it was home to four generations of the Harris family, including Teresa – the youngest daughter of founders John and Amelia. The success of present-day Eldon House is built on community collaboration and public programming – both of which are emulated in its partnership with playwright Penn Kemp and the Palace Theatre to bring to life The Triumph of Teresa Harris onstage in late March, 2017.



The Builders of Eldon House


John Harris b. 1782 d. 1850 Amelia Ryerse Harris b. 1798 d. 1882



With huge gratitude to grants from and


The Triumph of Teresa Harris

March 22-25, 2017. Penn’s two-act play, will be produced at London’s Palace Theatre,
710 Dundas St., London. 14 actors and our musicians, Mary Ashton, Panayiotis Giannarapis

Director: Diane Haggerty.

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From the original production at Eldon House, London ON, September 2013. Visit this beautiful heritage museum:

A processional play by Penn Kemp

Photos by Daniela Sneppova, Art Director

Teresa Harris comes home to reflect on a well-traveled life! Teresa was a Victorian woman raised in London’s historic Eldon House yet her adventures in Tibet and beyond made her one of the greatest explorers of her time.

Donna Creighton as Teresa Harris.

Music performed by Mary Ashton & Panayiotis Giannarapis

Directed by Louise Fagan.
Art director: Daniela Sneppova 

Original music by Mary Ashton

Because this was promenade theatre, with Eldon House as a feature character, audience size was very limited and we sold out! Performance were held at Eldon House, 481 Ridout Street North, London Ontario.



Here is the 2013 Creative Team of The Dream Life of Teresa Harris performances at Eldon House, London ON

Penn KempWriter, Producer, Creator! 

Penn KempActivist poet, performer and playwright Penn Kemp is the inaugural Poet Laureate for London, a Life Member of the League of Canadian Poets, and a recipient of the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee medal.  She has published twenty-six books of poetry and drama, had six plays and ten CDs produced as well as award-winning videopoems.  As Writer-in-Residence for Western, her project was the DVD, Luminous Entrance: a Sound Opera for Climate Change Action, Pendas Productions.  She hosts an eclectic literary show, Gathering Voices, on CHRW.  Quattro Books has recently published the second edition of Jack Layton: Art in Action, which she edited.  Penn is in seventh heaven to be collaborating with a creative team of such calibre for The Dream Life.

Louise FaganDirector, Dramaturge, Co-Producer 

Louise medium headshot

Louise an arts entrepreneur, producer and director adept at bringing an idea to its fullest creative expression. Working collaboratively or as the sole instigator her “riveting and relevant” performances have been as diverse as their settings. Louise’s select credits include the National Museum of Women in the Arts (Washington DC), Off Broadway at Urban Stages (New York City), John Labatt Centre (London Ontario), Victoria Park (London Ontario),  as well as numerous stages in Toronto, Ottawa, London, St John’s Newfoundland, and New York.  Louise’ work has been featured in O the Oprah Magazine, London CityLife, the New York Times, NOW Magazine, SCENE Magazine, The BEAT, Canada’s daily National  newspapers, CBC Radio as well as CTV, CBC and Rogers Television networks. Louise works in theatre, music, dance, film, television and on multi-discipline projects. In the studio, on the stage, with a single artist or a cast of 100’s, the heart of Louise’ work remains in telling a story. Louise is thrilled to be bringing the story of Teresa to life in the extraordinary London gem, Eldon House. 

Donna CreightonTeresa Harris

Donna Creighton

Donna Mary Creighton is a multiple award winning Canadian performing song writer, actor and event producer. Creighton has performed on a number of high-profile projects, including the Opening ceremonies for the 2001 Canada Summer Games: founded, produced and performed with Orchestra London the role of Nora in Hearts Made Great in 2004 and 2006. In 2006 and 2008 she Assistant Produced and performed in the “In Good Company Festival” with Louise Fagan. In 2009, Hylante, a song about the first Canadian interment operations is featured in James Motluk’s Canadian Documentary “Jajo’s Secret”.  In the fall of 2011 she featured her one woman show, Northern Daughter at the Thin Air Writer’s Festival in Winnipeg.  In the fall of 2012 she launched her solo career at Aeolian Hall to a sold out house. This past winter of 2013, she was a feature performer in AlvegoRoots production of Colleening. She has years of experience as a professional recording artist with Canadian award winning trio Sirens. Recently she has released singles of her solo material on her website:

Mary AshtonComposer, Performer, Violin, Harp

Mary Ashton sketch

Classically trained violinist, Mary Ashton, is  a graduate of the UWO Faculty of Music and Faculty of Education; at Western she studied with Dr. Robert Skelton and Gwen Thompson, and played with various string ensembles as well as Orchestra London. Attending classes at the Goderich Celtic College opened a whole new world of music for Mary, in which she continues to immerse herself, playing in weekly tune sessions in London and often trekking off to join sessions further afield.

As a performer, she has continued to explore the various languages of music, discovering an innate love of traditional music, be it Celtic, Greek, or Arabic, and a deep passion for improvisation.  Currently Mary can be seen performing a kaleidoscope of musical genres as a soloist or member of a variety of musical groups, most notably the award winning Light of East Ensemble, which performs music of the Near and Middle East.

As co-artistic director of this ensemble, Mary has enjoyed playing at a wide variety of venues and events such as SunFest, Home County Folk Festival, Mill Race Folk Festival, and Stratford Summer Music on the Barge. She has also been a guest lecturer at the University of Western Ontario and the University of Windsor, as well as presenting music educational concerts to many elementary and secondary schools.  She currently teaches violin at the London Waldorf School and works as an OCT for TVDSB.

Mary has previously provided a soundscape for Penn Kemp’s production of “Helwa!”, and this new creative collaboration of music, word and drama, is proving to be really exciting!

Panayiotis Giannarapis–  Composer, Performer, Oud

Panayiotis Oud PhotoPanayiotis was born in London, Ont. Canada from Greek immigrant parents hailing from Athens, Greece. He began his musical studies at the age of 8, studying the accordion, and Western music theory at the Ontario Conservatory of Music. Then he began to immerse himself in the Greek Bouzouki. He studied with various players, and continued his studies at the Elite Music Academy, in Toronto Ontario, studying Greek music theory, as well as the Greek Bouzouki under the direction of Mr. Anastasios Issakidis. In his studies, he was exposed to various styles of Greek music. From folk, traditional, laika (popular), rembetika (Greek blues), dimotika (people’s music), to even nisiotika (island music). He also studied Guitar (of various styles) with Vasilios Issakidis, and Darren Driscol. He has studied the Oud and the Arabic Maqamat theory under the guidance of Mr. Nabeel Shehadeh. Studying Classical Arabic music, traditional, folk, and modern urban music from different Middle Eastern countries. He has recently continued his studies in the Arabic Maqamat theory, and Egyptian music of the Ottoman Era and currently studying the Nay (Arabic Flute) with Dr. Giorgos Dimitrios Sawa. In studying the Oud, which is his genuine passion, Panayiotis reaches deep into his roots from Asia Minor where he explores the musical traditions of Smyrni and Konstatinoupoli. He has also studied Byzantine music with Pater Elias Drossos.

He has guest lectured at the University of Western Ontario’s Ethnomusicology course.  In 2010 and 2013 he participated in the TAKE 4 lecture series at the University of Windsor. In 2011, he was asked to give a workshop at the University of Windsor’s Music Therapy Class on Creative Improvisation, and an additional workshop to students interested in performing the music of the Near and Middle East. He has performed on television, radio and at various concerts, and festivals around the Southern Ontario region. He has given seminars, and workshops on the Oud and Near and Middle Eastern music. His love and passion for this particular type of music has no bounds.

Daniela Sneppova – Art DIrector

Daniela sneppova_wheelSneppova is an artist working across the boundaries of photography, performance and electronic media.  With one foot in Canada and the other in the Czech Republic, her performance and installation projects have been exhibited internationally and in Canada. Her most recent projects include the large media theatre piece, “Mrtvolka” (Little Corpse) which premiered at Studio Theatre at Harbourfront Centre in Toronto in 2011 and a curatorial project exploring life under a totalitarian regime during which independent art and culture were forbidden. “Samizdat: The Czech Art of Resistance 1968-1989”  premiered in New York City in 2012. Currently she teaches at Western. Her favorite place in the world? 60 feet under (the surface of the water). and

Krisanne NunesAssistant Director


Krisanne Nunes is a teacher and editor-in-the-making from London, Ontario. She is a graduate of Western University where she holds a Bachelor of Education and a degree in English and Music.  Krisanne is an active solo and choral accompanist in London; she also enjoys singing and is regularly involved in a number of choirs in the London area.  Krisanne splits most of her time between managing a community choir and working as the Lead Visual Merchandiser within a retail setting.  Most recently, she can be found travelling between cities in Southwestern Ontario to give seminars and advice about merchandising. She is honoured to be working with the collaborative team in the production of The Dream Life of Teresa Harris.




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