Project Description


It’s 1910 and the town of Ship Cove, NL needs a new name. When it’s decided that the name will be derived from the first child born to either the Randell or Rex families, a baby race ensues as each extended family vies to have the town named either “Port Randell” or “Port Rexton”. But, when a Randell has the first child and it’s a girl, the Rexes push for the rules to be changed so that the town must be named after a boy baby. Based on true events, this is a family musical comedy about getting in the “family way”!

Full length family musical (10F, 7M) in development.

2014 – Rising Tide Theatre Festival, July 29 – August 31
2019 – Rising Tide Theatre, July 22 – Sept 2

The cast of The Naming of Port Rexton 2019, produced by Rising Tide Theatre, Donna Butt AD
Back row L to R: Devon Bryan, Michael Power, Chrissie Baxter, Lonni Patey, Michelle Rex Bailey, Grant Tilly, Reneé Hackett
Front row L to R: Sam Vignault, Elizabeth Hicks, Sarah Connors
Not shown: Stage manager: Cindy Kendall, Director: Kevin Woolridge, Costume and set design: Alison Kate Helmer, Sound design: Maddy Palmer, Lighting design: Lisa V. Oorschot


DEMO RECORDING CREDITS: Charlotte Moore (1,3), Krystin Pellerin (1,3) , Jeff Irving (2), Jacquelyn French (2,3), and Lauren Toffan, Kate Etienne, Gaby Grice, Josh Wiles, Michael Cox, David DiFrancesco as a chorus on track 1. Music direction and additional arrangements by James Smith. Recorded by Justin Stadnyk at


Make it a boy

“Make it a Boy” L to R: Michael Power, Sarah Connors, Reneé Hackett.

“Did you Ever?” Sam Vignault and Chrissie Baxter

If I'm going to make a life

“If I’m going to Make a Life” L to R: Reneé Hackett, Chrissie Baxter, Lonni Patey, Michelle Rex Bailey

Cast of The Naming of Port Rexton, 2014

The cast of The Naming of Port Rexton (2014), large cast version, produced by Rising Tide Theatre, Donna Butt AD

Back row L to R: Dennis Fitzgerald, George Roberston, Brian Hiscock, Alex Abbott (music director), Mallory Fisher, Brad Bonnell, Jessie Paynter, Andrew Crawford (tech), Jake Fisher
2nd row L to R: Michelle Rex Bailey, Anna Wheeler, Rachel Huys, Meghan Greeley, Carolyn Fowlow, Lexi Mendoza, Stuart Simpson, Michael Chaisson, Cindy Kendall
Front row L to R: Michael Worthman, Owen Van Houten, Michael Power
Not pictured: Keith Pike (director)


While working at Rising Tide Theatre in Newfoundland as an actor one summer, I heard the legend this musical is based on- how the neighbouring town of Port Rexton was named when one family won out over the other by changing the rules so the town must be named after a boy. With the help of a Canada Council Grant, this show was a part of the Rising Tide Festival season in 2014 (with actors who were descendants of families mentioned in the play!), and is currently being developed further. 

I have high hopes for the future of this show. It’s theme of the the value of women and girl babies to society is universal, along with it’s unique take on the importance of young people staying home in their rural communities if they want to see the change they envision happen there.

To request more information, click here.


This show was developed with the assistance of the Canada Council for the Arts.