AWAKE Media Release – October

Download a PDF version: AWAKE Media Release October


Media refer: Dianne Weinrib, DW Communications 416-703-5479

Expect Theatre presents the 2011 Fringe Festival hit AWAKE

as Part of the Next Stage Theatre Festival


A theatrical experience

exploring the inner world of

one of Canada’s most violent,

yet inspiring, ‘hoods


Toronto (October 25, 2012) – Expect Theatre proudly announces the next stage of its Fringe Festival hit AWAKE as part of the 2013 Next Stage Theatre Festival. One of the most popular and socially relevant plays at the 2011 Fringe – and a Globe and Mail Hot Ticket Pick – AWAKE gives audiences a glimpse into the lives of those we usually only read about in the headlines. Tickets go on sale November 19 through or or 416-966-1062.


AWAKE takes audiences deep into the heart of one of Toronto’s most violent neighbourhoods – Jamestown – to explore the ripple effect of gangs within a community.


AWAKE is made up entirely, word-for-word, from interviews with mothers who lost sons, gang members, outreach workers and police as it portrays the lives of those living in an “at risk” community.


AWAKE is staged as a funeral, and portrays the lives of those living in an “at risk” community – from those who have risen above the most difficult circumstances to those who are still fighting for their lives to escape.


AWAKE was inspired by the infamous 2005 shooting of Amon Beckles when his killer entered a Jamestown church during a funeral service, found him, and shot him six times in the chest. The idea that someone could be targeted in a church, during a funeral, shook the city to its core.


Less than eight years later, gun violence continues to plague neighbourhoods across the city, sometimes spilling out into the common spaces shared by everyone. After several months of high profile gun incidents such the Eaton Centre and Danzig shootings, the message of AWAKEis all the more resonant.


AWAKEis not only a story about mourning the loss of lives; what starts off as a solemn remembrance quickly turns into an examination and celebration of the people and culture coming out of one of Canada’s most dangerous, infamous, yet inspiring and culturally exciting areas.


AWAKEis a multi-media experience that incorporates spoken word, dancehall, hip-hop, docu-theatre and gospel music.


AWAKE is created and directed by Expect Theatre Co-Artistic Directors Laura Mullin and Chris Tolley (Expect’sRomeo and Juliet Remixed-5 Dora Award noms, Static-Harbourfront Centre’s World Stage, urbanNOISE arts festival) with choreography by choreographer Nicola Pantin (Stratford Festival, Dora Awards for Outstanding Choreography for Romeo and Juliet Remixed and LKTYP’s Jacob Two Two Meets the Hooded Fang). Music direction is by multi-instrumentalist, vocalist and CBC Radio 2 host Andrew Craig and soundscape is by Ed Hanley (Juno nominee, Auto Rickshaw). Set and costume design is by Jackie Chau and lighting design is by Arun Srinivasan. Thedramaturge is Erica Kopyto.


The multi-media piece features actors Beryl Bain (Shaw Festival,I Marcus Garvey), Lauren Brotman (Dora Award for Theatre Direct’s And By The Way Miss), Quancetia Hamilton (Da Kink In My Hair at Princess of Wales), Muoi Nene (Obsidian Theatre’s Ruined, Volcano’s The Africa Trilogy), Peyson Rock (Soulpepper’s King Lear, LKTYP’s Bunnicula), David Shelley (Stratford Festival’s Henry VIII, Next Stage Festival’s Grace Project: SICK!) and Richard Stewart (TheatreArchipelago’s I Marcus Garvey). The stage manager is Laura Cournoyea.


Expect Theatre presents the 2011 Fringe Festival hit AWAKE as Part of the Next Stage Theatre Festival

Written and Directed by Laura Mullin and Chris Tolley

Musical Director: Andrew Craig

Choreographer: Nicola Pantin

Set & Costume Designer: Jackie Chau

Lighting Designer: Arun Srinivasan

Soundscape: Ed Hanley, Dramaturge: Erica Kopyto

Stage Manager: Laura Cournoyea


AWAKE performance times (Next Stage Theatre Festival runs January 2-13, 2013):

January 3 at 5:00pm, January 5 at 7:15pm, January 6 at 9:15pm, January 7 at 8:45pm, January 8 at 6:45pm,

January 10 at 7pm, January 11 at 7:30pm, January 12 at 9:15pm, January 13 at 4:45pm

Factory Theatre Mainspace, 125 Bathurst Street

Tickets $15 (7pm onwards start-time); $12 (6:59pm or earlier start-time)

Tickets On Sale November 19, 2012 – online at or by phone at 416-966-1062

Peyson Rock in Expect Theatre’s AWAKE, part of Next Stage Festival January 2-13, 2013. Photo by Steve Carty.

For info & tickets to AWAKE, visit


No Comment


Post A Comment