(Headmaster, Crescent School)


"McMurtry is a comic dynamo!"

(The Globe and Mail)

Mike McMurtry's Merry Tale Theatre

Mike's NEW VIDEO for Cinderfella!


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Shows & Workshops


A hilarious twist on a classic tale! When his mother dies, Cinderfella becomes a helpless servant to his wicked step-mother and her two horrible sons. But his determination to stay positive in the face of misery ensures that his greatest dreams will come true.

The Bully & The BeanStalk

On his first day of school, Jack gets bullied. Fearful for his safety, Jack decides to stay at home and help his dad on their farm instead of going to school. But when Jack is sent to the market one day to sell their only cow, an adventure begins that leads him to confront the biggest ‘bully’ of them all. The Bully and the Beanstalk is a penetrating exploration of the bullying cycle, seen through the lens of the fairy tale classic. The play teaches a valuable lesson about empathy, self-assertion and ‘inner’ strength, and features McMurtry’s signature parade of colourful characters, clever staging, musical diversions; and more audience participation than ever before. A magical coming-of-age story that will captivate audiences of all ages.  

Intro to Improv Theatre

Through games and exercises, students learn the fundamentals of ‘Improv’.

Twist Your Own Tale

Using the tools of ‘improvisational theatre’, students create, rehearse and perform their own ‘twisted’ fairy tale.

Portrait of Mike McMurtry


Mike McMurtry is a critically acclaimed writer/performer who has worked extensively in theatre, television and film. He was a regular on CityTV’s "Godivas" for which he received a Gemini nomination. He has produced six one-person shows, two that have aired on television, and his short films have appeared on The Comedy Network and CBC. In 2010 Mike created his first all-ages show, Happyview P.S., which was an instant critical and audience hit.

Since then, Mike has become focused on creating dynamic theatre for young people, primarily targeting school audiences. He is currently touring his one-person fairy tale Cinderfella which is receiving wide-spread praise, and his next show—The Bully and the Beanstalk—will begin touring schools in the fall of 2013. Mike also offers short workshops for students on the fundamentals of Improvisation, as well as a longer workshop where students get to create and perform their own adapted fairy tales. These workshops offer extremely fun and dynamic ways to bring drama into the classroom.

Mike lives in Toronto with his a wife, two daughters, a cat, and the occasional mouse.

Booking Your Show


Merry Tale Theatre's critically acclaimed school performances engage, inspire and delight young audiences by bringing classic stories to life through a unique synthesis of story-telling and theatre. Fairy tales are important building blocks of literacy, and their timeless themes and morals continue to captivate young minds. By reinventing these tales in an innovative style—one that hinges on audience involvement—Merry Tale Theatre delivers an exceptional educational experience for students. Mike also offers short workshops on the fundamentals of improvisation, as well as longer workshops where students get to create and perform their own adapted fairy tales. Book Mike for a performance and/or workshop today!


Entertainment is the foundation of any great party. One of the easiest ways a parent can make his/her child’s birthday party a wonderful and memorable event is to hire a wonderful and memorable performer. Mike’s one-of-a-kind and hilarious shows can be adapted to suit any type of venue.  For a birthday party, Mike will also tailor his show to include a special participation from the young guest of honour- actually giving him/her an important role to play in the tale. And with a Mike McMurtry performance, the adults will be just as delighted as the kids!


Mike can also be booked for performances in any type of theatre venue. Whether a children’s festival, a library basement or a community theatre, Mike’s hilarious, innovative and ‘singular’ fairy tale adaptations are sure to entertain audiences of all ages.  For 20 years, Mike's theatre performances have earned him wide-spread critical acclaim: find out why a Mike McMurtry show is a one-of-a-kind theatrical event!



"A smart, interactive romp! ... Comic dynamo McMurtry has kids rolling in the aisles!"

Brad Wheeler, The Globe and Mail

"Great fun! McMurtry draws his audience in, and holds them entranced"

Robert Crew, The Toronto Star  

"(McMurtry) manages to have the adults guffawing boisterously throughout the play, to the point of drowning out the laughter of the little ones"

Atkilt Geleta, EYEWEEKLY

"An ‘assembly’ of talent! McMurtry is a nimble clown... Lots of fun!"

Glenn Sumi, NOW Magazine

"A tour-de-force... a stunning one-man show... McMurtry has to be seen to be believed"

Liam Lacey, The Globe and Mail

"Utterly funny"

Kate Taylor, The Globe and Mail

"Invigorating! Explosive!... a virtuoso performance... pulled off with panache"

Pat Donnely, The Montreal Gazette

"Fresh, intelligent and highly entertaining"

Vit Wagner, The Toronto Star

"A remarkable act of ventriloquism"

John Doyle, Broadcast Week

"It is a triumph"

John Coulbourn, The Toronto Sun


Xtra Magazine


The Mirror


"An amazing show with an important message! Everyone loved it"

(Head of Lower School, Crestwood)

"Our students and staff absolutely loved Michael's performance of Cinderfella!  He is not only an incredibly funny and talented actor, he has an exceptional ability to connect with students.  Michael was able to simultaneously make us laugh out loud and reflect on important messages throughout his show.  It is rare to have a performance that is outstanding on multiple levels, but Michael hit the mark as he entertained us, reinforced important life messages, and interacted beautifully with students.  Thank you, Michael!"

(Vice Principal, Orchard Park PS)

"The students loved it; they were totally enraptured!"

(Head of Junior School, Royal St. George's College)

"Hilarious! A great show for primary AND Junior kids!"

(Principal, Givens/Shaw PS)

"Hilarious, delightful and touching… one of the best productions to be staged at the School! … The gifted Mike McMurtry was able to enthral his viewers for the entire performance; and he had the children asking for more… A must see for all students!"

(Principal, Bannockburn School)

"A provocative way to get the students to rethink fairy tales… Thoroughly entertaining!"

(Vice-Principal, Bishop Strachan School)

"Great fun for students AND staff! … Intelligent, creative, hilarious and accessible for all the kids from JK to grade 6."

(Principal, Clinton Street P.S.)

"Cinderfella was highly engaging for students from Kindergarten to Grade 6. Michael had everyone's attention for the entire performance."

(Principal, Post’s Corners)

"Excellent in all respects! When Michael McMurtry visited our Junior School to share Cinderfella, it was a welcome afternoon of quality entertainment for children and adults alike. Without straying from the essential truths of this timeless tale, Michael reinterpreted the story for us in a uniquely comic way that left the lessons intact amid peels of laughter from clearly delighted children. Great intertextuality and clever allusions. I have never seen our music teacher laugh harder!"

(Principal, Albert College Junior School)

"Mike is an awesome entertainer and wowed us with his interactive, animated and energetic one-man fairy tale… The students were completely engaged and motivated! It was a wonderful story with important life lessons about empathy, kindness and honesty."

(Principal, Chine Dr. PS)

"A performance truly not to be missed! students (K-6) staff and parents laughed themselves silly. Cinderfella is an animated story-telling performance that delivers strong messages about kindness, hard work and perseverance."

(Principal, Bridlewood PS)

"Not only did Michael have the children laughing and engaged throughout his entire performance, he had the teachers too!"

(Assistant Head of Montcrest School)


(Teacher, John Wanless PS)

"The best performance I’ve seen at a school in a long time!"

(Teacher, Maplehurst PS)

"Michael kept the whole gym enthralled… A great show!"

(Vice Principal, King Edward PS)

"An exhilarating one man play that celebrates what’s important in our world"

(Vice-Principal, Roden PS)