Canada is a special place. With a vast geography, relatively small population spread over a huge land, and a multicultural mix that makes this country one of the most ethnically diverse places in the world, Canada is able to produce an array of voices with multiple viewpoints.
The magic of the Great Canadian Theatre Company is that it allows a wide spectrum of Canadian playwrights — each with their own unique story and style — to showcase their talents.
Until November 2, local theatre lovers can enjoy the brilliance of Anita Majumdar, as she performs the first two parts of her trilogy of life in Port Moody, B.C. (Part three, GCTC artistic director Eric Coates hints in the program notes, will be presented on a future date).
The double-bill currently on offer is Fish Eyes and the world premiere of Boys With Cars.
Incredibly, Majumdar wrote Fish Eyes a decade ago as a one-person show assignment during her third year of studies at the National Theatre School of Canada. One can only imagine the reaction of her teacher and classmates, as they watched this highly intelligent and moving story about a teenage girl of South-Asian heritage who grows up in the small town of Port Moody.
Watching Majumdar’s very impressive solo performance, the audience is able to see a wide range of characters. One moment we can hear the angst-ridden soliloquy of a teenage girl, the next the wisdom/frustration of a grown Indo-Canadian woman — with the accent spot-on — and then flashes of Buddy, the high school hunk that the protagonist is in love with but who in reality is a dolt.
Boys With Cars is the second part of the trilogy, and continues the insightful reflection of life in small town British Columbia. While the name of the protagonist changes, the context stays the same: i.e. the struggles of growing up in a small town remain, where big dreams are being crushed by the frustrations of life’s daily challenges.
A talented dancer, Majumdar brings this skill to both performances. If you are unfamiliar with her work, or have seen her work before and want to watch Majumdar perform live, I highly recommend that you attend this play.
The double-bill Fish Eyes and Boys With Cars is playing at the GCTC (1233 Wellington St. W.) until November 2. For showtimes and tickets, click here.