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.

  • Danielle

    Great job Evan! Keep up the amazing work! Xoxo
    14/06/2016 6:31:45 PM

  • Margaret Pynn

    Wonderful job Evan. Proud of you !
    14/06/2016 4:49:20 PM

  • CLFaseruk

    Great job, Evan!
    14/06/2016 4:18:03 PM

  • Cheryl F

    Excellent work, Evan! What a fun and interesting way to present great information!
    14/06/2016 4:16:40 PM

  • Cynthia Gorman

    Great job Evan we loved it.
    14/06/2016 3:57:55 PM

  • Lisa Hurd

    Wow! I was blown away by this video and by the very talented young man who produced it! A very well researched, extremely interesting, well written and produced video! I have been passionate about theatre since I was 12 years old and the first musical I was in, a few weeks after arriving in St. John's in 1969, (!!!) was 'The Sound of Music' I was in the chorus but just happy to be part of that incredible production. Little did I know then that probably the reason that this and so many of the wonderful musicals that came before and after, probably owed their being to JMA. Thank you JMA and thank you Evan for telling his story. Well done. You have made your family and friends very proud!
    14/06/2016 3:53:58 PM

  • Lisa Hurd

    Wow! I was blown away by this video and by the very talented young man who produced it! A very well researched, extremely interesting, well written and produced video! I have been passionate about theatre since I was 12 years old and the first musical I was in, a few weeks after arriving in St. John's in 1969, (!!!) was 'The Sound of Music' I was in the chorus but just happy to be part of that incredible production. Little did I know then that probably the reason that this and so many of the wonderful musicals that came before and after, probably owed their being to JMA. Thank you JMA and thank you Evan for telling his story. Well done. You have made your family and friends very proud!
    14/06/2016 3:51:37 PM

  • Lisa Hiurd

    Wow! I was blown away by this video and by the very talented young man who produced it! A very well researched, extremely interesting, well written and produced video! I have been passionate about theatre since I was 12 years old and the first musical I was in, a few weeks after arriving in St. John's in 1969, (!!!) was 'The Sound of Music' I was in the chorus but just happy to be part of that incredible production. Little did I know then that probably the reason that this and so many of the wonderful musicals that came before and after, probably owed their being to JMA. Thank you JMA and thank you Evan for telling his story. Well done. You have made your family and friends very proud!
    14/06/2016 3:45:11 PM

  • mike gorman

    very well done and informative
    14/06/2016 3:15:41 PM

  • Henry Rowingardener

    Is this the same Evan that was at the Kiwanis music festival? WOW gifted Scallywag
    14/06/2016 3:07:45 PM

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Breton

Bedford, Nova Scotia

Nadia

Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island

Lilianne

Saint John, New Brunswick

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.