Stage Door News

Port Dover’s Lighthouse Theatre first-ever fall production will be “Tip of the Iceberg”

Tuesday, August 30, 2022

Just because summer is on the way out doesn’t mean the laughs are stopping at Lighthouse Festival. We are thrilled to invite you to the theatre this November for our first ever fall production; the world premiere of Tip of the Iceberg.

Written by three playwrights based out of Norfolk County as part of Lighthouse Festival’s Play Development Program, Tip of the Iceberg is a story of friendships. It’s filled to the brim with original folk music woven into the production and guiding the story along in a unique way. It projects an inspiring message of “It’s not too late.” Above all, it carries the Lighthouse Festival banner forward with the heartfelt Canadian sense of humour that patrons know and love.

An iceberg might be the perfect metaphor for this production, and why we at Lighthouse are so excited about it. Picture an iceberg, sticking out of the ocean waters. Much like an iceberg, there's plenty beneath the surface of this production.

In the summer of 2019, Lighthouse Festival’s Artistic Director, Derek Ritschel, was approached by three aspiring playwrights from Norfolk County: Chris Rait, Mark Williams and Jeannine Bouw. The three had a rough draft of a script they were writing: a story concept created by Chris Rait, injected with some of Jeannine’s comedy and Mark’s authentic Newfoundland homegrown stories to anchor it.

Having never previously written a play, the three approached Ritschel with a first draft hoping for some simple advice and pointers. That’s not what happened though. Instead, Ritschel was so impressed with the story and their ideas that the three friends were ushered in under Lighthouse Festival’s Play Development Program.

“We asked Derek if he could just humour us and read the play for feedback as a favour, the next thing we know we get a call from Derek asking if we can come into his office." - Chris Rait

Derek’s involvement led to a second draft of the story and a professional table read at the Tarragon Theatre in Toronto with actors Sam Rosenthal, David Rosser, and Ralph Small. Three years full of countless rewrites, edits and compromises between the playwrights has since passed to fine tune the show. Now, Tip of the Iceberg is ready to make the Lighthouse stage it’s home for you. While full of original music, fun and laughter, the writers hope a strong message comes across to the audience.

“These are two men; their best days are behind them. But at the same time, throughout the play the audience and the characters come to the realization that it’s not all said and done yet. There are new doors to open, there’s new avenues to travel. You can move on; you can move forward. There’s still a lot of fun to be had.” – Mark Williams

Lighthouse Festival has been a part of the fabric of Norfolk County since the 1980s’ and now the Niagara Region for the past decade and is absolutely thrilled to support aspiring local playwrights in the development of their stories.

“To be able to say we wrote a play, and had it preformed, and we’re from Norfolk County, and it opened at Lighthouse Festival. That’s a big source of pride.” – Mark Williams

Tickets are on sale now and selling quickly at or by calling 1-888-779-7703. Don't miss all the fun of summer theatre in the middle of November!

Tip of the Iceberg

By Chris Rait, Mark Williams and Jeannine Bouw

Music by Chris Rait

Gordon and Archie are lifelong friends born and raised in a remote Newfoundland fishing village. After a lifetime on the seas, they are surprised tourism has become the main industry in their sleepy town. Rich tourists are paying big bucks for an authentic NFLD experience and Archie believes he has hit upon an idea where they can reclaim their youth and make a fortune off the flocking tourists. All he needs is his friend, a boat, an iceberg, and a little bit of luck.

Show dates:

Port Colborne: November 9 - 13

Port Dover: November 16 – 26

For tickets visit