The Dunsmuirs

By Rod Langley

The Dunsmuirs
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The Dunsmuirs: A Promise Kept is the second of three plays chronicling the saga of one of Canada’s wealthiest, most ruthless and ill fated families.

While Robbie and Joan’s two sons, Alex and Robert, heirs apparent to the family fortune, are groomed to hold the reins of ... Read more


Overview

The Dunsmuirs: A Promise Kept is the second of three plays chronicling the saga of one of Canada’s wealthiest, most ruthless and ill fated families.

While Robbie and Joan’s two sons, Alex and Robert, heirs apparent to the family fortune, are groomed to hold the reins of power, Robbie Dunsmuir cuts a deal with Sir John A. Macdonald to build a railway from Victoria to Nanaimo, to distract B. C. voters from the fact that the promise of a trans-continental railway which brought them into confederation has been delayed. The last spike of the E & N is driven and Robbie and Sir John descend to the lowest level of the Dunsmuir pits where they consummate their deal in a two day orgy of bonded whiskey, cold chicken and much quoting of the bard (Robbie Burns, that is).

In a devastating final scene, the family secret emerges from the closet of the Dunsmuirs’ castle, Craigdarroch, on the eve of its inauguration. The scene is set for the furies to deliver the family up to the curse Robbie and Joan brought with them from their native Scotland.

Rod Langley

Rod Langley
Rod Langley was born in Australia in 1942 and moved to Canada in his teens. He now lives in Nanaimo, B.C., where he works on film and theatre projects. His plays published by Talonbooks are Bethune (1975), The Dunsmuirs: Alone at the Edge (1991), and The Dunsmuirs: A Promise Kept (1992).

Reviews

“The story of the Dunsmuirs is a hell of a tale that's got everything. ”
Victoria Times-Colonist

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