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And So It Goes

And So It Goes
Your Price: $17.95 CDN
Author: George F. Walker
Publisher: Talonbooks
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 128
Pub. Date: 2010
ISBN-10: 889226547
ISBN-13: 9780889226548
Cast Size: 2 women, 2 men

About the Play:

And So It Goes is a full-length comedic drama by George F. Walker. A dark comedy that follows follows a middle-class couple, victims of the recession, who must grapple with their daughter's schizophrenia and the husband's downsizing. Therapy from a quirky literary legend may keep them from going over the edge.

And So It Goes revolves around the stigma of mental illness and its effects on family and community. Newly unemployed baby boomers Gwen and Ned appear to be completely different people: Gwen, a practical, down-to-earth Latin teacher; Ned, an impractical investment advisor constantly dreaming up new ventures for making money. But appearances can be deceiving, as their son Alex, who left home years ago, and their grown daughter Karen, recently diagnosed with schizophrenia, can attest. Unable to maintain the façade of their former middle-class lifestyle, Gwen and Ned search for a new life in vain, not realizing that they have become redundant – they speak dead languages. Both seek solace from their "therapist" (Kurt Vonnegut as a mental apparition), but he can't help them in a world where the former universals of language and commerce no longer exist as foils for his sardonic humanism. Of all the voices she hears, those of her parents have become least relevant to Karen, because they seem to her to be concerned only with what they feel about their daughter's "condition," and not with what she is experiencing within that condition. "I'm scared," we hear Karen say as the play opens, and her fear is both justified and infectious. As the play progresses her parents discover to their horror that Karen has been living the life of a drug-addicted prostitute during her illness, lashing out at threats that aren't there, but unable to defend herself against those that ultimately result in her brutal murder. And So It Goes, a title derived from Vonnegut's signature observation on the vagaries of life, is not only an allegory of years after the bottom fell out of the global economy, in which social order has collapsed, random violence is ubiquitous, "the authorities" have become hypocritically indifferent if not downright irrelevant to our security, and we have all become "scared," but also a paean to the human will that carries each of us through our darkest hours.

And So It Goes premiered in 2010 at Factory Theatre in Toronto, Ontario.

Cast: 2 women, 2 men

What people say:

"Walker's questions are, as always, more philosophical than political, and the answers are hidden far from sight in the dark corners and alleyways of the urban landscape … Oh – and did I mention it's a comedy." — Globe & Mail

"Using mental illness as a metaphor for a sick society is tricky, but if anyone can pull it off, it's George F. Walker ... [his] dialogue is sharp, and his depiction of an upside-down economic and psychological world hits us with brutal tragicomic force." — NOW Magazine

About the Playwright:

George F. Walker is a prolific Canadian playwright with working-class roots in Toronto's hard-luck Cabbagetown, the city's now trendy East End. Instrumental to the 1970s alternative theatre movement in Canada, the self-taught playwright has written more than 30 plays and created screenplays for several award-winning Canadian television series. His plays have been presented across Canada and the United States and in more than 700 productions internationally. His work has been honoured with two Governor General's Awards, eight Chalmers Awards, and five Dora Awards. He is also the recipient of the Governor General's Performing Arts Award for Lifetime Artistic Achievement and is a Member of the Order of Canada.

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