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Wind at my Back Cast: Hey, I Wonder Where They are Now?
Table of Contents
1. Wind at My Back was a treasure
2. Shirley Douglas
3. Buy a Box Set From Amazon
4. Katherine Greenwood
5. Dylan Provencher
6. Tyrone Savage
7. James Carrol
8. Now You Know
1.Wind At My Back was a Treasure
Discovering the television show Wind at My Back was like finding a hidden treasure. Unfortunately, like many shows, I found quite a while after it had finished production. So, because it was no longer running, I become curious about what the stars, such as Dylan Provencher and Shirley Douglas, were doing now. Were they still acting? Where else, if anywhere, could I catch their work?
Wind at my Back is a gem of a show set in the 1930's during the Depression, in the fictional town of New Bedford, Ontario. The show aired from 1996 to 2001, but I did not find it until 2010, almost a decade after it stopped shooting. Fortunately for me and other fans, the networks still keep it going, as it plays at 12:00 p.m. and 2 a.m. on Bravo Network. It also available in various networks throughout the US and other countries.
So, wanting to know about the actors from Wind At My Back, I did some research and managed to track down some of the actors from this show, and see what they are doing now.
In the U.S., this show runs at 7:00 p.m. daily on the Inspiration Network (ISPN).
In Canada, you can view it on Bravo Network daily at 10:00 a.m.
Shirley Douglas in a candid moment
2. May Bailey: Shirley Douglas
At the centre of the town, New Bedford, is a stubborn and independent woman, May Bailey, who has taken over her husband's mine after he passed away, and never lets someone else's feelings get in the way of saying what she believes. May is the grand matriarch, and almost everyone else is a bit intimidated by her overbearing ways.
May Bailey is played by the very well-known Canadian actress, Shirley Douglas. Shirley is a powerhouse individual who is both a very strong actress, and a very strong voice in politics. The daughter of famous Canadian Tommy Douglas, who is known as the "father of Canadian Healthcare," she is also famous for once being married to Donald Sutherland, and being the mother of Hollywood star, Keifer Sutherland.
Cute Video from Ms. Douglas
Douglas got her start as an actress on the stage, trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in England, and has alternated between television and the theatre throughout her career. In 1997, she appeared in a Canadian production of The Glass Menagerie , with her son, Keifer Sutherland, and even did a narration part in the children's series, Franklin in 2000.
Since leaving Wind at My Back, at the age of 65, she has acted in several television episodes, including individual episodes of Corner Gas , Robson Arms and Degrassi: The Next Generation. She also portrayed Madeline Albright in the TV Movie, Road to 9/11, in 2006 and starred in another TV movie, The Christmas Shoes, in 2002.
Like her father, Shirley herself is an outspoken advocate for publicly funded healthcare. As recently as 2010, she spoke up in the media, writing a letter to the editor concerning the issue. She also has done numerous media interviews on the issue, and is knowledgeable and articulate in her arguments. Like her father before, she is passionate about politics and about Canada.
Yes, Ms. Douglas, does seem quite a bit like her character, May Bailey. She is ambitious and full of energy and passion, and never seems to give up. She is still active in politics, and I wouldn't be surprised to see her name on another movie, or in the television credits, in the not-too-distant future.
3. Watch A Whole Season At Once
If you like the show, sometimes it's nice to have it in a box set, so you can watch a whole season at once, at your convenience! These box sets are available at Amazon. The inks are below, along with a brief synopsis of each season.
If you live in Canada, and would prefer to buy from the Canadian Amazon site, you can buy the videos through the following a-store set up with Amazon.ca: Canadian A-Store: I Wonder Where They Are Now.
This season chronicles the romance between Honey and Max, and the struggles that come with a second marriage and kids.
This is the first season, when we see the circumstances that brought Honey and the boys to New Bedford.
In this season, the boys are starting to grow up, and against each other. With their mother away, they start to feel a bit lost. Toppy, too, must deal with the loss of her marriage, and the struggle to create a new life for herself.
This season seems to focus on issues of the heart: Toppy and Bob's marriage falls apart, Grace searches for love, and Hub starts to grow up, and falls in love.
In this Christmas special, all the loose ends are tied up, and we take a glimpse into the future of all the characters. For some, could be a bit of a tear-jerker, as we say good-bye to our beloved town.
In this last season, Grace has come into her own, juggling her career at the radio station along with dating. The boys are making decisions about their future, and both Max becomes mayor of the town.
4. Grace Bailey: Kathyrn Greenwood
Grace Bailey was one of the only single (although very briefly married) characters on Wind at my Back, and she seemed to add some glamour to the show. Infatuated with female celebrities, and always reading fluffy women's magazines that her mother despised, Grace was beautiful and funny, but never quite lucky in love.
Kathyrn Greenwood, born in Scarborough, Ontario, trained as an actor at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, and then got her first gig working for the Second City comedy troupe, which produced such legends as John Candy, Eugene Levy and James Belushi, and stayed there for five years.
Since working on Wind at My Back, Greenwood has appeared in the Canadian sketch comedy series, The Royal Canadian Air Farce , and This Hour Has 22 Minutes, as well as the hilarious, Whose Line is it Anyways?
Presently, she is involved in a stage act called Women Fully Clothed , which has received rave reviews for its sketch comedy. This troupe, with five women with Second City origins, tours around the world, features what the Eugene Levy calls the "funniest women in Canada."
In the series, Wind at My Back, Grace Bailey is a character who is spontaneous and fun, and willing to take risks. It seems that Kathryn Greenwood in real life is also a risk-taker, taking on the most difficult form of comedy: improvisation, and taking on the challenge of a five-woman show that goes worldwide.
Wind at My Back Christmas
5. Hub Bailey: Dylan Provencher
Hub Bailey, the handsome grandson of May Bailey, whom we watch grow from a preteen boy into a mature young man, was played by Dylan Provencher. Although a prolific child actor, acting in several television series and TV movies, Provencher did not do much acting after his stint on Wind at my Back.
Instead Dylan runs a real estate business with his brother, Sean, in the Toronto area. Their website gives some insight as to how Dylan made the switch from the entertainment industry to real estate. Family members advised him and his brother to invest in properties, and the two were so good at choosing properties that they decided to pursue real estate as a career.
Although he has given up a career on the screen, he puts creativity into his business, using "innovative approaches to customer service," according to the brothers' website.
6. Fat Bailey: Tyrone Savage
Fat Bailey, Hub's younger brother, was always getting into trouble, and never seemed to be able to conform to his family's expectations. He was jealous of Hub, who seemed to be good at everything, and in one memorable episode actually duked it out with his brother.
Fat was played by Tyrone Savage, who was a child actor who had played in some kid's television shows, such as Goosebumps, and did a fair bit of voice-over work, including a voice role in the same show Shirley Douglas narrated for, Franklin.
What has Tyrone been doing lately? In 2009, he did voice work for the teen comic series, Stoked. He has also done some television work over the years. For the most part, though, he has been acting on the stage, with roles in Romeo and Juliet, Arcadia, and A Musical Called Robin Hood.
Most notably, Savage is currently a member of a the theatre group called Red One Theatre Collective. According to its website the group is devoted to creating "an immediate and visceral theatrical experience for the viewer by deconstructing the artifice of traditional drama." The group goes to sites not normally associated with a stage, and creates a show.
Promo for "Wind At My Back"
7. Max Sutton: James Carroll
Max Sutton was the lead male role in the series, providing a steady source of strength and encouragement to the Bailey family by marrying Honey and becoming a stepdad to the boys. He was also a teacher, a writer, and the leader of all the sports activities in New Bedford. Max was the picture of cool, and always seemed to do the right thing, in spite of a rather sketchy past, which is alluded to once in a while.
James Carroll, who played Max Sutton, studied acting at La Salle University, and worked as an actor both in theatre and television before joining the show. His jobs varied from Shakespearean roles, to a part on Magnum P.I..
Since finishing up Wind at my Back in 2001, Carroll has kept busy. He has done some television movies, including Deacons for Defense, and The Gathering in 2007. He has also appeared in numerous T.V. episodes, including Wonder Falls and True Crime Scene. His latest gig was a voice-over in the video game, Red Dead Redemption.
8. Now You Know
Of all the cast members I have researched, all have stayed and made their careers in Canada. Most have stayed in acting, more on the theatre side of the business. Two cast members, Savage and Greenwood, are now involved in independent theatre groups. One cast member, Provencher, has turned his back on the entertainment industry altogether.
So, now you know where they are now, and the next time you watch the show, Wind at My Back, you will be able to place these actors into the present day.
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