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Heaven

Heaven
Your Price: $17.95 CDN
Author: George F. Walker
Publisher: Talonbooks
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 144
Pub. Date: 2000
ISBN-10: 0889224293
ISBN-13: 9780889224292
Cast Size: 2 women, 4 men

About the Play:

Winner of the 2001 Floyd S. Chalmers Canadian Play Award

Heaven is a full-length social comedy by George F. Walker. Part fantasy, part comedy and part drama, the play follows a successful human rights lawyer, who launches a one-man crusade against the hypocrisies of racists, religious leaders and the politically correct. The cosmic events unleashed by his actions make his life crumble around him, leaving him confronting an afterlife that further defies his expectations.

Heaven is the dark story of Jimmy, an obsessive human rights lawyer wrestling with personifications of racism, hate and religion – borderline cops, druggies, snitches, rabbis and faltering wives – until his life seems to come apart at the seams. The six instantly recognizable multi-cultural characters play out their coincidental lives, deaths and aspirations in a very contemporary paradise – a park on the outskirts of a major city. The characters are rich, multifaceted and memorable. All of them are, in one form or another, engaged in the 'fundamental right' of the pursuit of their own happiness, whether that means acquiring life skills, improving their career prospects, working on their family relationships, increasing social justice in the world, balancing the concerns of crime and punishment, or integrating more closely with what they identify as their own communities. Of course, the pursuit of these personal goals, usually considered as good and worthwhile in our society, pits each of these characters irrevocably against each other. Heaven is a comic, yet brutally honest, exploration of the issues of race, religion, karma and cultural diversity that shows how good intentions carried to extremes will invariably frustrate and complicate the lives of others.

Heaven premiered in 2000 at the Canadian Stage Theatre in Toronto, where a high demand for tickets prompted the company to extend the production's run for another four weeks. The American premiere later that year at the Woolly Mammoth Theatre in Washington also enjoyed a successful, extended run. Since then the play has been produced at professional theatres across the Canada and in the US.

Cast: 2 women, 4 men

What people say:

"...classic Walker – loud, fast, violent, smart and very, very funny." — The Globe and Mail

"Walker takes us through hell on his journey to Heaven. But it's a trip you won't want to miss." — Toronto Star

"This is not only Walker's most challenging play to date, it is also one of the most disturbing and rewarding evenings of theater for quite some time." — Variety

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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