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In Memorium


Shirley Barrie, Toronto , Canada

(September 30, 1945 – April 15, 2018)

SHIRLEY BARRIE was a playwright, producer and arts administrator. She co-founded the Tricycle Theatre in London, England and Straight Stitching Productions in Toronto and received two Chalmers Awards and a Dora Award for plays written for Straight Stitching. She wrote plays for young and family audiences, for adults and librettos for opera. She co-edited the book, Prepare to Embark: Six Theatrical Voyages for Young Audiences. Recently she has had two plays produced by 4th Line Theatre: Beautiful Lady, Tell Me.... (2007) and Queen Marie (2012). Measure of the World was produced by the Alumnae Theatre in 2013, and I am Marguerite was produced at the Alumnae in 2015. She was also a story editor for film and television projects and was President of the Playwrights Guild of Canada from 2009-11.

Shirley was a well-loved and respected member of ICWP from its earliest days and regularly contributed knowledge and enthusiasm to discussions on the ICWP Email discussion List. Many members have benefitted from her generous sharing of insights and experience of playwriting and creating theatre. 

Rebecca Ritchie 

Rebecca died after a 13-year battle with breast cancer on Friday, May 8, 2009. She was 60 years old.

By day she was a healthcare attorney. She is survived by her husband Stafford, daughter Glynis, and sons Stafford and Tom.

She was well respected and admired in her local arts and theatre community. A respected member of International Centre for Women Playwrights, she gave considerable time to writing articles on playwriting for the ICWP Seasons Newsletter. Her articles as "The Play Doctor" where she answered queries from playwrights with problem scripts were especially appreciated.

It is with regret that I mention the life and achievements of Rebecca Ritchie. As we all look toward remembrance in our life time, we should never forget the calling on our lives--to do the very best we can do for ourselves and the world. Rebecca will be remembered for her achievements, but they are only a small portion of her life. The remembrance is in the hearts and minds of those who wish to recall her talents and gifts. Let us all think on our end result and work toward our future.  --Terri Febuary

Virginia Foster (nee Bauch) 

Virginia ( Ginny) was born November 4, 1933 in Kelso, Washington. She died in Portland, Oregon on February 4, 2012, after years of living with Stage IV cancer. As a playwright and poet, she was known as Ginny Foster. [Full obituary here.]

Ginny was the daughter of Clifford and Agnes Bauch, and mother to five children, grandmother to three; great-grandmother to five; great-great grandmother to one.

She graduated with honors from Centralia Community College, attended Stanford and Berkeley Universities (where she was active in civil rights), and was awarded a Fulbright scholarship.

Ginny taught English to high school students, and wrote poetry throughout her life. After she retired from teaching, she began to write plays. She was a member of ICWP. Together with Sandra de Helen, she produced readings of new plays by women in 1998, and helped organize a mini-conference of ICWP in Portland, Oregon in 2001.

Ginny's dream was to see one of her plays on the boards at Portland Center Stage. She didn't long for the lights of Broadway, she didn't chase publication. She continued to learn, to write, to hone her craft, until her play Starvation Heights was selected for JAW, and a staged reading was presented. The interview with her about this event provides a delightful opportunity to hear how Ginny thought, and what her work process was. Read it here.

Ginny's literary executor is ICWP member Sandra de Helen. They were friends who were also a two-person writing group for more than twenty years. You can contact Sandra for information about Ginny's work at sandra (at) 

--- by Sandra de Helen


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