There Are Stories You’ve Never Heard, Brilliantly Told: a review of The River

I went Saturday night to The River, a Nakai production, with Michael Greyeyes directing a play written by David Skelton, Judith Rudakoff and Joseph Tisiga.  To be frank, I wasn’t sure if I was interested in what I thought would be a sermon on homelessness.  I just didn’t want the guilt.  (And yes, I’m ashamed I actually said that—but I’m human and honest, and homelessness seems so much larger than I can comprehend–and I don’t know how to react “properly” or have any effect on the problem.  I suspect avoiding the issue is part of that problem–and yet, it’s the easiest thing to do.)

But local playwright David Skelton co-wrote the play, and I’m a huge fan of David and Nakai.  So I went.

I was blown away.   It wasn’t a sermon.  It wasn’t a guilt trip.  It was eye-opening, and it was riveting, and it was brilliant.  

For more of my review of The River at What’s Up Yukon

In a nutshell, brilliant writing, directing and acting take you into the vulnerable world of the homeless in Whitehorse.  Inspired by first person stories, collected by the writers through interviews over several years, that interviewing technique gives this play a realistic quality you won’t find in stories about homeless people.  You want to catch this play fast.  It’s here for a limited time, limited seating.  You won’t be disappointed.  I predict a long life for this play, and many, many performances across Canada.

(For more stunning photos of The River by photographer Richard Legner, visit this page.)

24hr Playwriting Contest: deadline for registration April 9th

color-swallow-1--catherine cheekGang of Writers!

You say you want to write a play!  Or a spoken word piece!  Come to the 24hr Playwriting Contest that happens April 18th-19th from 11am on Saturday to 11am on Sunday at the Westmark.  For 50 bucks you get a room for the night, free breakfast, free coffee and snacks, free yoga, and free dramaturges who sit around waiting to tow your plots out of the ditch, free your scenes, and otherwise encourage you.  You can’t find a sweeter deal for writers!

Deadline for sign-up is April 9th at 5pm!  Call Nakai at 667-2646 (#2) and someone will take your info off the phone call, or come by Nakai’s office in the Whitepass Station on 1st street and get a registration form.

Come and enjoy the frenzy of community writing in  a nice shwanky hotel.  Turn your play in on Sunday 11am with the rest of the writing crew!  And sign up for our later Cabaret (in May) to see a scene performed from your play.  Prizes will be awarded by our judges!  There are TONS of good prizes.

Come Play with Us!!

Jerome Stueart

Producer, 24hr Playwriting Contest!

—picture by Catherine Cheek