Spring 2018 preview

Scirocco is proud to announce four spring drama titles.

Children of God
a musical by Corey Payette
available March 2018

Children of God is a powerful musical about an Oji-Cree family whose children are taken away to a residential school in Northern Ontario. Julia and Tommy struggle to survive in the harsh environment of a religious school that is determined to rob them of their identities while their mother, Rita, never stops trying to get them back. The impact of this experience on the lives of all of them is profound and devastating, yet the story moves toward redemption. Children of God offers a thrilling blend of ancient traditions and contemporary realities, celebrating resilience and the power of the Indigenous cultural spirit.


Oregano
by Rose Napoli
available April 2018

One moment, Mona’s father is teaching her to make pasta sauce at 2 AM—and the next, she sits beside him in a hospital room, counting the seconds between beeps. When a curiously familiar barefooted boy runs in, carrying a blue umbrella and singing a song she’s heard somewhere before, the rain begins. And Mona goes on a journey forward to the past. Steeped in legend and lore, Oregano is a family play about accepting the past in order to embrace the future—teaching us that sometimes, the truth can be exactly what we imagine it to be.

 


Popcorn Elder
by Curtis Peeteetuce
available April 2018

As a condition of his parole, Darren has been ordered by the court to live with his father, Wally, on the rez. The two have always had a contentious relationship: Wally is a problem drinker, and Darren’s got a short fuse. But Wally tells his son that he’s stopped drinking and started going to ceremony, and urges Darren to do the same. As old family secrets start to be revealed, the father and son grapple with complex issues.

Popcorn Elder is a drama with many layers. It examines the issue of “plastic shamans” who offer spirituality at a price. It looks at a community working to face its demons and heal past trauma. And at the heart of the play is the story of a father and son who are seeking connection and reconciliation. Through flashbacks, a combination of Cree and English, and an unforgettable cast of characters, Popcorn Elder tells the story of one family’s journey toward hope.


The Seat Next to the King
by Steven Elliot Jackson
available April 2018

In 1964, a white man walks into a public restroom in a Washington, DC park looking for sex. The next man who enters is a black man.

In what seems at first to be a simple encounter, The Seat Next to the King explores the lives of two men from the pages of history who literally sat next to the most powerful men in America—Bayard Rustin, a friend to Martin Luther King Jr. who organized the March on Washington, and Walter Jenkins, top aide and friend to President Lyndon Johnson. An exploration of sexuality, race, and masculinity, The Seat Next to the King imagines a meeting between two men, burdened by their prejudices and inner conflicts, as they attempt to find a connection.

Toronto launch of 2017 books

Join us for the Toronto launch of 9 Scirocco plays.

With plays by:

Marie Beath Badian (in attendance)

Kenneth T. Williams (in attendance)

Minh Ly (in attendance)

Anna Chatterton (in attendance)

Pamela Mala Sinha (in attendance)

Gord Rand (in attendance)

Mark Crawford   

Maureen Hunter (in attendance)

Geoffrey Simon Brown 

Special guest host Marcia Johnson

 

Monday November 27
6:30–9:30 pm

The Upstairs Bar at
The Artful Dodger Pub
10 Isabella Street, Toronto

Roland Vandal is Our Manitoba Hero 2017!

Congratulations to Roland Vandal on being one of Our Manitoba Heroes for 2017!

“Our Manitoba Heroes recognize individuals in our province who make an impact in our communities and our 2017 Heroes are no exception…Thank you to our Heroes for all that they do. Your selfless efforts continue to inspire us all to make a difference!”

https://www.facebook.com/ManitobaHeroes/

 


Off the Ropes: My Story eBook is available through Signature Editions, or click here to purchase our paperback copy!

Finding Home in the Promised Land – Review

Reviewed by Darlene O’Leary

“I fought my way out of the wilderness, but I still wear cuts inside my body and soul.”

In Finding Home in the Promised Land, author Jane Harris shares her deeply personal story of domestic violence, poverty, homelessness, and social exile. She also offers a narrative and historical glimpse of her Scottish immigrant ancestors, particularly her great-great grandmother. Their struggles in the new “promised land” of pre-Confederation Canada both parallel and contrast Harris’s own quest for home.

As the book moves between the past and the present, Harris searches for answers about the brutal reality of poverty. She offers an account of her own experience with what she calls the “poverty industry.” In the process, she also provides disheartening facts about poverty in Canada and who is most impacted.

Harris is both a victim of and resistant to the deeply held notion that poverty is a personal failure. She recognizes that surviving and thriving in any context requires not just hard work and determination, but it requires social relationships and supports.

Harris’s analysis of social and institutional failures is broad ranging, and her personal experiences illustrate these failures powerfully.

In pointing towards solutions, Harris makes a case for more affordable housing, along with a housing benefit for those in need. She also recommends exploring a guaranteed annual income as an alternative to the “shame-based poverty industry.”

Ultimately, this book is a personal search for home and an exploration of the social exile of those most vulnerable.


https://cpj.ca/book-review-finding-home-promised-land