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Now available for only $10 - a recording of the World Premiere performance of Crime Does Not Pay!

Downstage and Forte Musical Theatre proudly present
with the generous support of Hit & Myth Productions
by David Rhymer and Kris Demeanor

World Premiere Run: March 2-11, 2017

Arts Commons Engineered Air Theatre (225 8 Avenue SE)

Comic Fan Night Thursday, March 2 @ 7:30pm (Click here for more info)
Relaxed Performance Tuesday, March 7 @ 7:30pm (Click here for more info)

Recommended for ages 16 & up
Run time approximately 2 hrs, 10 minutes including intermission

I heard there was a perfect crime
Where fortune, plans and guts aligned
And the daring duo under covers
Whispered just before the end
"Look at us - we got away with it"


There are two ways to get your tickets:

1) Guarantee your seat by buying a ticket for $25 in advance online by following this link, by phone at (403) 294-9494 or in person at the Arts Commons Box Office.

2) Through our Pay It Forward program, 25% of each performance’s tickets are set aside for no cost at the door. Tickets are first come, first served once our box office opens an hour before the performance. In exchange, we’ll ask for your email address so we can send you a brief survey about your experience. (Don’t worry, we won’t sell or use your email for any other reason.) Enjoy your experience? Invite others to check it out or make a donation of any size to the program.

For Crime Does Not Pay, there are 34 Pay It Forward tickets available per performance.


Recognized internationally for work that is incisive, heartwrenching and darkly funny, Calgarians David Rhymer and Kris Demeanor have spun a true story into a brand-new musical that will plant gorgeous songs and explosive ideas in your head.

Bob arrives in the big city in the late 1940s with a sketchbook full of comics about how the little guy always gets pushed into the dirt by corporations and politicians, but publishers say there’s no money in bleeding hearts. When Bob falls for Violet, a lounge singer with an abusive ex-husband, inspiration strikes! He gets his big break after sexing up his stories with ‘babes and blood’ - dark depictions of true crimes where the criminals are the heroes, in a hot new title called "Crime Does Not Pay".

The comics become an overnight sensation but inspire a backlash from children’s advocate Eleanor Flood, who claims their racy content is spurring horrible copycat crimes. Turns out that the trappings of success, the threat of censorship and Bob’s possessive love of Violet make for one dangerous cocktail...

Five years in the making, Crime Does Not Pay is one racket you’ll want to get in on!

A HEADS UP: Crime Does Not Pay includes material that some people may find upsetting or triggering, including profanity, sexual innuendo, scenes of domestic violence, and references to suicide. If you would like to learn more about the content of the show before attending, please feel free to contact us.



The cast of seven in Crime Does Not Pay each play characters in the story as well as various instruments to bring the music to life.

Devin MacKinnon - Bob Wood & GuitarJamie Konchak - Violet Page & BassKris Demeanor - Mr. Crime & Guitar
Lennette Randall - Eleanor Flood & CongaDavid Rhymer - Marvin Shade & KeyboardSelina Wong - Ensemble, Keyboard & Percussion
Andre Wickenheiser - Ensemble, Trumpet & Percussion

The creative team is working to realize the comic book world of the show on stage.

Simon Mallett - DirectorTyler Jenkins - Illustrator & Comic ConsultantAnton de Groot - Set Designer
Alison Yanota - Lighting & Associate Set DesignerAmelia Scott - Projection DesignerDeitra Kalyn - Costume Designer
Joe Slabe - Musical DramaturgRuby Dawn Eustaquio - Stage ManagerDerek Waite - Sound Mixer


The Engineered Air Theatre is on the main floor of Arts Commons (formerly the EPCOR CENTRE for the Performing Arts) in downtown Calgary at 225 8 Avenue SE. You can enter either from Stephen (8th) Avenue or 9th Avenue and follow signs for the Engineered Air - it's around the corner from the Max Bell Theatre.

Arts Commons is easily accessible by transit, with the C-Train LRT only a block north. If you're heading eastbound, you can get off at either Centre Street or City Hall Station and walk across Olympic Plaza. If you're heading westbound, get off at City Hall Station.

Underground parking is available at Arts Commons at 829 Macleod Trail SE. However, the parkade can fill up quickly when there are many shows running throughout the building, so we recommend clicking here for more tips about where to park in the area.


- There will be a mixture of cabaret tables and regular theatre seating with no assigned seats. The doors will open about 30 minutes before the performance time so that you can choose your spot.

- The Engineered Air Theatre is fully wheelchair accessible but if you give us a heads up that you or someone in your group uses a wheelchair, we'll be better prepared to welcome you.

- All of our performances are followed by a post-show discussion that lasts about twenty minutes. If you stick around, you can expect a fascinating chat with other audience members about the themes of the show, moderated by one of our artists or staff. You can share your thoughts and questions or just sit back and listen.


David Rhymer has created numerous original compositions over his thirty-year theatrical career, including works with the One Yellow Rabbit ensemble (Ilsa: Queen of the Nazi Love Camp, Dream Machine) and his independent song cycles (Why Freud Fainted, Bawdy, Songs from Nightingale Alley, Wreck Beach).

He has written, composed or co-created stage works that have toured nationally and internationally, including Mata Hari in 8 Bullets which made a splash at the New York Music Theatre Festival.

Kris Demeanor is an acclaimed poet, actor and musician who has released seven albums of original music including his most recent release Entirely New Beasts. He has also collaborated with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra and completed a two-year term as Calgary's inaugural Poet Laureate.

Kris had a short film based on his song I Have Seen the Future appear at the Sundance and Toronto Film Festivals, and garnered a Canadian Screen Nomination for his performance in The Valley Below.

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