Blind actor graces Blyth, Ont. outdoor stage with 'Assassinating Thomson'

Bruce Horak has been legally blind since birth, but that hasn’t stopped him from carving out a career in the visual arts.

“I’m legally blind. I have about nine per cent vision. It’s been my normal my whole life. And I have been very fortunate to have a number of mentors and teachers who have just kept encouraging me to keep writing and painting. If I can, through this show, and getting out here on stage, inspire people to nurture their budding artist, then I feel as though this show has done its job,” he says.

That show is 'Assassinating Thomson,' a one-man play, written and performed by Horak, about the mysterious death of one of Canada’s most beloved artists.

“In 'Assassinating Thomson,' I paint a portrait of the audience, while I tell the story of how I became a visually impaired, visual artist, and I solve the mystery of who killed Tom Thomson,” says Horak.

Thomson, one of Canada’s most successful artists, died in a mysterious “accidental drowning” in July of 1917.

'Assassinating Thomson' opens on the Blyth Festival’s new outdoor Harvest Stage on Wednesday, and runs until October 2. After that, you can see Horak in Star Trek-Strange New Worlds, as a new Star Trek character, Hemmer.

“I grew up watching and loving Star Trek. It’s in my blood, so to get to be a part of that is really special,” he says.

But until then, Horak is excited to grace Blyth’s new outdoor stage.

“As a performer, to be back in front of people again, and to be outdoors, well it’s beautiful,” he says.

You can learn more about Horak at www.brucehorak.com and more about his play at www.blythfestival.com.

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