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Sainte-Marie Among the Hurons

Sainte-Marie Among the Hurons
Your Price: $17.95 CDN
Author: James W. Nichol
Publisher: Talonbooks (cover image may change)
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 79
Pub. Date: 1980
ISBN-10: 0889221472
ISBN-13: 9780889221475
Cast Size: 11 male

About the Play:

Sainte-Marie Among the Hurons is a full-length drama by James W. Nichol. The play is about the disastrous mission that the French Jesuits made to the Huron Wendat people in the 17th century. Sainte-Marie Among the Hurons portrays the conscience of a priest who refuses to accept salvation of his soul through the destruction of a proud people.

Sainte-Marie Among the Hurons deals with the Indigenous peoples' reaction to the first European settlement West of the Ottawa Valley. Established by Jesuits in 1638, Sainte-Marie among the Hurons was the headquarters for the French Jesuit Mission to the Huron Wendat people in what is now Midland, Ontario. The settlement was destroyed when the Iroquois overran the Hurons in 1649. The story about the clash of two cultures is told in terms of a clash between three men: the Jesuit missionary Blackrobe, the Huron convert Sleeping Water, and Only Broken Rock who advocated the murder of the priest.

The play was first written for radio as Feast of the Dead and broadcast on CBC in 1973. It was expanded with additional characters for its first stage production as Sainte-Marie among the Hurons in 1974 at Theatre London in London, Ontario, with the role of Only Broken Rock played by trailblazing actor August Schellenberg, the first Aboriginal person ever to graduate from Canada's National Theatre School (NTS). It was subsequently staged in 1977 at the National Art Centre in Ottawa.

Cast: 11 male

What people say:

"The play has a burning sincerity … It is a fascinating glimpse of two totally different cultures." — Ottawa Citizen

"Sainte-Marie Among the Hurons is stark, dramatic and filled with philosophical nuances… A stimulating theatrical experience. The play is an unusually impressive achievement." — Southam News Service

About the Playwright:

James W. Nichol is a Canadian playwright best known to CBC Radio listeners as the author of two popular and long-running mystery series: Midnight Cab and Peggy Delaney. He has been writing for radio, film, television, and theatre since 1964, and is the author of the critically acclaimed play Sainte-Marie Among the Hurons. His 1989 radio adaptation of The Stone Angel was so successful that he wrote a stage version, which continues to be performed in theatres across Canada.