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SEP 17-29

WORLD PREMIERE

Odile Gakire (Kiki) Katese, director, author and humanitarian, has been honoured around the world for her use of art to heal and inspire. In this groundbreaking collaboration with Ross Manson, one of Canada's most celebrated directors, Katese takes the audience on a remarkable journey of resilience and imagination. At a time when our world is racked with disharmonies, hatreds and struggle, The Book of Life offers hope, unlocking trauma, and finding a humane way forward full of joy.
 

“Volcano is one of those companies that every great theatre city needs – bold, experimental, and bubbling with ideas.”

– TORONTO STAR
 

INFO

"I want to archive life."

What makes humans go to the edge of the abyss, and then step in? In Rwanda, in April of 1994, one million people were murdered in 100 days. A country devoured itself. The rivers literally ran with bodies. As has happened too many times in human history, something terrible turned in the collective unconscious of a people, and the unthinkable was suddenly commonplace.

But then what? What happens next – after the worst thing?

In Kiki Katese's new project, The Book of Life, she leads an audience through a remarkable journey – a kind of how-to guide to rebuild a deep understanding of life in the aftermath of incalculable loss. Kiki writes:

"We still have the possibility of undoing the genocide in some small way, to bridge the hole that’s been left, not with bones or the clothes they wore when they died – but with their lives. The dinners. The lovers. The dates. The joy. How do we undo the undo-able? We let them live again."

The play is based on Kiki's years-long project of accumulating letters written by survivors and perpetrators of Rwanda's genocide, ordinary people, addressed to those who are gone. It is infused with original music performed and sung by the internationally acclaimed Women Drummers of Rwanda.

At a time when our world is racked with disharmonies, hatreds and struggle, The Book of Life offers hope: unlocking life after trauma, and finding a humane way forward full of joy.
WRITTEN & PERFORMED BY
Odile Gakire Katese
 
DIRECTED BY
Ross Manson
 
PROJECTIONS CREATED BY
Sean Frey
 
PHOTO
Michael Collopy
A VOLCANO THEATRE PRODUCTION IN ASSOCIATION WITH THE WOMAN CULTURAL CENTRE, RWANDA AND WHY NOT THEATRE PRESENTED BY CANADIAN STAGE
THE BOOK OF LIFE IS UNDERWRITTEN BY SANDRA SIMPSON IN RECOGNITION OF HER GENEROUS GIFT TO CANADIAN STAGE'S TRANSFORMATION CAMPAIGN

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