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Your Price: $17.95 CDN
Author: Len Falkenstein
Publisher: Playwrights Canada Press
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 80
Pub. Date: 2018
ISBN-10: 1770918841
ISBN-13: 9781770918849
Cast Size: 2 women, 3 men (doubling)

About the Play:

Lac/Athabasca is a full-length drama by Len Falkenstein. Inspired by the Lac-Mégantic crude oil train explosion, the play tells the dark truth of the forces behind the disaster. Townsfolk tell their experiences of the event, lamenting the deaths of 47 friends. Lac/Athabasca is a deeply Canadian piece that provokes reflection on corporate greed, environmental policies and the future transportation of oil.

Lac/Athabasca is inspired by the train disaster at Lac Mégantic in which an unattended train loaded with oil rolled down a hill, derailed and exploded downtown. As the train loaded with explosive crude oil journeys across time and place, the audience is taken from Alberta's Athabasca Glacier and Fort McMurray to a New Brunswick oil refinery in the fictional town of Lac Madawaska to reveal a Canadian dream as twisted as the train tracks that stretch across it. A pair of nineteenth-century fur traders are harrowingly pursued by an unseen terror along the Athabasca River. Two scientists in present-day Fort McMurray investigate fish kills and cancer rates downstream from the tar sands. A young man comes to work in Alberta, but is driven home after uncovering a horrible secret. The residents of Lac Madawaska unite in grief after an entirely preventable disaster. Their stories intersect and echo in ways that are shocking, thought-provoking, and deeply moving. Lac/Athabasca is a powerful and poetic work that connects the dots between voraciousness and victimhood, accidental missteps and sacrificial victims, and ravaged landscapes and ruined souls.

Lac/Athabasca premiered in 2014 staged by Theatre Free Radical at Revue Stage during the Vancouver Fringe Festival. Since then it was selected for production at the 2015 SummerWorks Theatre Festival in Toronto, where it attracted national media attention and earned rave reviews, including selections from NOW Magazine as one of its "Best of the Fest".

Cast: 2 women, 3 men (doubling)

What people say:

"This play is a necessity." — The Plank

"Exploiting northern Alberta's modern oil sands causes its own environmental problems, although ... the show isn't a rant against oil extraction. Other characters point out that the people protesting against pipelines use fossil fuels to drive and heat their homes, and without pipelines the oil just travels less safely by rail. Lac/Athabasca is a well-executed show that will leave you thinking once the lights go back on." — The Edmonton Sun

"Lac/Athabasca will leave you breathless – truly… Len Falkenstein's writing is vivid and arresting." — The Slotkin Letter

About the Playwright:

Len Falkenstein is Director of Drama at the University of New Brunswick in Fredericton, where he teaches Theatre and Playwriting. He is also Artistic Director of Bard in the Barracks, Fredericton's outdoor Shakespeare company, and NotaBle Acts Theatre Company, whose mandate is to develop and produce new plays by New Brunswick dramatists. His plays have been produced at the SummerWorks Theatre Festival, Fringe festivals across Canada, and the NotaBle Acts Theatre Festival.