Dial M For Murder – Actor Spotlight – Jason Manella

“Dial M For Murder” is Jason’s first Bygone Theatre Production; he will be playing Captain Lesgate.

Jason Manella aka Captain Lesgate

Jason Manella aka Captain Lesgate


For almost half a decade, Jason has been fervently persisting his goal of becoming a performance artist. Jason is not only an actor, but also a writer and a musician. Since moving to Toronto in November 2012, Jason has been in various short films, such as Whiskey Peak as Kid Callaway through Humber College, and Lucky Day as James through Sheridan College. Jason recently participated in the 2013 Toronto Fringe Festival in Stephen Briggs’ stage adaptation of Terry Pratchett’s Monstrous Regiment as Carborundum the Troll through Socratic Theatre Collective. The highlight of Jason’s life thus far has been graduating College, being in three Stage Productions, and getting married to Rebekah Manella; all within the span of two months. Jason would like to sincerely thank all of his family, friends, fans – and would especially like to thank God for the continual blessings and support.

1. How did you get started in theatre?

I started in Theatre through the Youth Group I joined in high school called Youth Evangelizing Others (YEO) The YEO team would put on youth retreats for grade-schoolers – and we would use skits as ways to get the kids involved with the retreat and to get them really thinking about their faith. After being told by various people that I had a natural knack for acting, I decided to audition for the Summer play that year. It was Grease – and I was cast as Roger. I haven’t stopped acting since.

2. What is your favourite part of the creative process?

My favourite part of the creative process are all the mistakes that are made during performances. They are what make theatre for a performer nerve-wracking: keeping actors on their toes – and then when something does screw up – how real moments occur while the actors do their best to stay true to the scene. It’s truly amazing the discoveries one has to make to keep the play moving and also be true to the writer’s intention – all the while covering up a mistake.

3. What are some challenges you face as an actor?

Challenges I face as an actor? Getting noticed and making money – but don’t we all have those problems?

4. Any advice you want to give to others pursuing acting?

Stop trying so hard – Do. Or Do Not. There is no try. People only pass Judgement on others when they pass it upon themselves. Act Better. Breath. Never Give Up – Never Surrender!

5. What are you most excited for in regards to “Dial M For Murder”

Killing my wife. Or at least trying to. Again…

6. What are some of your Favourite Movies?

The Road to El Dorado. Artois the Goat. Star Trek – Into Darkness. Finding Nemo (and pretty much every other Pixar Movie). Braveheart (gimme a break – I’m a red-head) Inception. Etc etc etc

Dial M For Murder – Actor Spotlight – Rebekah Manella

“Dial M For Murder” is Rebekah’s first time working with Bygone Theatre; she stars as Margot Wendice.

Rebekah Manella aka Margot Wendice

Rebekah Manella aka Margot Wendice

Bio: Ever since birth, Rebekah Manella has been one for dressing up and performing.  Her acting career began as a costume designer.  She opened her own costume and fashion business before finishing high school and began creating one of a kind costumes and eveningwear.  Four years after beginning this endeavour Rebekah chose to follow her calling and began studying Theatre Arts at Canadore College in North Bay Ontario.  Rebekah’s debut performance was as the Countess Marie le Farre in J2’s production on The Four Musketeers.  She and husband, Jason Manella, moved to Toronto in November 2012.  Since then Rebekah has been in many short films and was also a part of this year’s Toronto Fringe Festival as Lofty Tewt  in Socratic Theatre’s production of Monstrous Regiment.  She is very thankful to God and her family, especially Jason, for pushing her to be where she is today.

How did you get started in theatre?

As a child I would dress up in costumes and would play bride and princess (mostly bride, thats what I wanted to be when I grew up).  I was home schooled my whole life so in my spare time I would take my dads camcorder and film myself acting out scenes from books or my own scripts.  I only really started theatre when I began college.  At first it really intimidated me but after my first workshop I was hooked.

What is your favourite part of the creative process?

All of it.  But if I have to pick a specific part of the rehearsal process it would have to be the blocking and working in the space.  Its one thing to sit around and discus the script and characters, which is another one of my favourite parts, but once you get on your feet there is so much more to discover.  I love how the more you discover the more real your characters life becomes and by the time you are performing you are actually living this person’s life on stage.

What are some challenges you face as an actor?

One of my greatest challenges is having the guts to put myself out there.  I am a rather shy person so networking is a huge challenge for me.  Also breaking into the scene so I can actually make a living off of acting and performing.

Any advice you want to give to others pursuing acting?

Do not give up.  If it is your dream, go for it and do not give up.  As an actor, If you have a fall back of any kind, pursue that – you’ll never fall forward if you fall back.  Learn all you can in the way that is best for you.  I found that college was not the way for me and that working is the way I learn best.  Read every script that you can get your hands on.  Have people notice you for you , not who you are like.  Take all work seriously, but always have fun. And last but not least do not try, in this business it is do or do not.

What are you most excited for in regards to “Dial M For Murder”?

I am really looking forward to working with everyone in this cast!  They are an incredible group and will be putting on a fantastic show.  I am very blessed to be surrounded by such talented and passionate people.  I am excited for opening night and wish I could watch the show, but alas I’ll be on the stage.