Jeunes Citoyens / Young Citizens

Evan St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador

Fair address: Avalon Regional Fair

Project: John Murray Anderson - A Little Known Figure in Newfoundland's History

My project is about John Murray Anderson (JMA).  Despite being relatively unknown to many people today he had a huge impact on Broadway.  It was his dream that St. John's would develop a professional theatre company.  He would be so proud to know that 60+ years after his death a musical was written and performed in his hometown about his life.

What was the most interesting thing you learned about your topic?

I was so surprised to see how talented JMA was. He was involved in all areas of theatre. JMA wasn't just a singer or a dancer. He was involved in the production, writing, lighting and design of 30+ shows on Broadway. He also gave many famous people their start on Broadway including Harry Belafonte and Gene Kelly.

What important lessons have you learned that you want to share with other Canadians?

JMA was far removed from Broadway and at a time when the musical theatre community was not very developed in Newfoundland he persisted and despite many setbacks he was determined to be a success. His story is about pursuing a dream and never giving up.

How would you compare your life today to the lives of those studied in your project?

As a young person who is very interested in musical theatre it is so encouraging to see how successful John Murray Anderson was on Broadway. Even though it was unheard of 100 years ago for a Newfoundlander to be a success on Broadway he was determined. Today we have so many opportunities and experiences compared to what John Murray Anderson had. Children today have the opportunity to perform with local theatre companies and can take advantage of voice and music lessons. JMA had to create his own opportunities.

  • Lynnann

    Well done Evan! Very informative and all around great!
    17/06/2016 5:43:51 AM

  • Raylene Collins

    Awesome job! Good Luck
    16/06/2016 5:50:30 PM

  • Liya

    Wow! Cool video, best of luck!
    16/06/2016 10:44:34 AM

  • Andrew

    Very impressive
    16/06/2016 7:46:46 AM

  • Maureen Bennett

    Very good job Evan! Good luck!
    15/06/2016 7:15:01 PM

  • Lisa Savage

    Great job, Evan. I believe that Mr. Anderson was friends with my grandfather, Jack Kielley. They shared an interest in antiques. It was interesting to hear his name again, especially in your excellent presentation!
    15/06/2016 1:54:49 PM

  • Patricia Morrissey

    Many thanks Evan for taking the time tom educate us about a person from the past that many have forgotten. Wonderful job on the video. Hopefully, we will hear more of your own voice in the future.
    15/06/2016 5:24:07 AM

  • Sharon Carson

    Very impressive and interesting. Great job Evan.
    14/06/2016 9:02:25 PM

  • Christine O'Meara

    Very impressive Evan!!! Totally enjoyed it!
    14/06/2016 7:47:38 PM

  • Christine O'Meara

    Impressive!!! Very informative and very well presented Evan! I totally enjoyed learning about JMA!!!
    14/06/2016 6:43:44 PM

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Project partially funded by the Government of Canada through the Department of Canadian Heritage.
  • Canadian Heritage / Patrimoine Canadien
  • Government of Canada
  • HBC: Hudson's Bay Company
  • ecentricarts inc.