About... the woman who started the

Community Theatre

community theatre

"It was with Gramma Dyck that I learned my first lesson on the importance of being able to tell a good story."

As a Russian Mennonite immigrant, she shared her childhood experiences from that far away country.  I remember many Sunday afternoons, while the rest of the family was taking an afternoon nap, I would keep Gramma awake by asking her to, “Tell me a story about when you were young.”

It was rooted in those experiences that my love of story and theatre lead me to Rosthern Junior College (RJC) as a student because of their drama and fine arts programs.

I was lucky that during my senior year at (RJC) I was mentored by the Designer at Persephone Theatre in Saskatoon, giving me the opportunity to work on their sets as well as having their guidance in designing and building sets at (RJC).

From there I moved on to a University degree majoring in Fine Arts from Bethel College in Kansas.

I have attended the Associated Mennonite Biblical Seminary in Indiana and took some art and music classes at Goshen College as well.


Vickie Dyck Vickie Dyck Artistic Director

Artistic Director and Founder, Vickie Dyck

All to lead me back to Rosthern Junior College as a fine arts teacher. Then finally to become the founder and Artistic Director at The Barn Playhouse. A theatre that just happens to be on our family’s farm where my education actually began those many years ago at my grandmother’s knee.

old farm photo
craft loft out houses

Our Purpose

At The Barn

Our mission is to build a safe and caring community by doing community theatre. We strive to make people feel like family at the Barn, both actors and audience.

Having worked on hundreds of plays over the last 45 years one thing stands out for me more than any specific production or performance. It is the people and the relationships that are built between all those who participate that hold a prominent place in my memory.  

Lives change as confidence builds. Support and encouragement are given to the next ones who join us by those who have already gained some experience on stage.

It is an honour to be a part of that and to nurture those experiences through the fine arts.

We try to have a mix of experience levels on stage for each show.  As my Dad used to say, “When you train a team of horses, the new one always learns more from being alongside an experienced horse than they do from you.”  We work to put that country wisdom into practice on our stage at the Barn.

At a very early age I also learned the importance of hospitality on this farm and so we work to extend that feeling of family to our patrons as well. From being personally greeted as you come onto the yard to wishing you a good night as you leave, you the audience, are our guests.  

the craft barn
barn theatre
How We Got Started On Our

Family Farm

40 years ago I had the pleasure of teaching high school drama at Rosthern Junior College.

Back then I remember thinking how wonderful it would be to continue working with these students even after high school, how wonderful it would be to work with actors who actually were the age of the characters they were portraying.

I knew so many talented people in the community who had nowhere to pursue their love for the stage back then.  

So, with nothing but a really good idea the first step was to find a venue that wouldn’t break the bank with rental fees.  That’s when my parents got involved. They were game to let me try this venture on our family farm. It seemed an obvious choice and a perfect fit to use the old barn and have our first show be “Charlotte’s Web”.

There was no trouble finding people who were willing to get involved. A few phone calls and we had our cast of characters ready for rehearsals.

But it didn’t end there, the idea kept growing. “What if we had a country fair out on the yard before the show began each evening?”

Neighbours took on running food-booths from the carriage shed out on the yard.  Musicians volunteered to play out on the patio in front of the house.  

After a conversation at the Martensville coffee shop Dad came home with the news that the local team drivers would like to give horse-drawn wagon rides through the pasture.

It was just amazing to watch the community get excited about sharing their talents and their hospitality.

That year there was only one production.  We ran it for 8 nights at the end of June, seating 100 people each night.   It was sold out even before we started.

I will be forever grateful for all these neighbours and friends, for all their excitement and their support that continues to this day.

The dream had become reality, but the dreaming didn’t end there.

My father, Peter Dyck, was always dreaming, always forward thinking.  He believed in this idea.

“What if Mom and I build another quonset?  A bigger building to hold a bigger audience? What if we build it attached to the old barn?  If the shows continue to sell out then you have a theatre.  If it doesn’t, well then I have another place to put my farm equipment.”

I am humbled to say the response from the community with sold out crowds has kept that quonset from ever being used as a shed for Dad’s farm equipment.

But Dad’s dreaming didn’t end there.  With the success of “Jake and the Kid” as our June show that year Dad said, “It would be a shame to wait until next year to do another one.  If I put radiant heating into the barn you could do a fall show, too.”

And so that fall we did “Cotton Patch Gospel” in October.  But once again the dream didn’t end there.

“If I put up an addition with indoor washrooms onto the side of the old barn you could try a Christmas show.  What do you think?”

And so we produced out first Dinner Theatre, “Amahl and the Night Visitors”.

As we begin our 30th Season, June of 2022, I am overwhelmed with gratitude.

Gratitude to all of you who have helped make the Barn a place where “community” happens.

I am also forever grateful to my parents for their fierce belief in me and the dream that we started together.

how the barn history started

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