Drew Haydon Taylor
Volume 21 Number 4
Someday, the new two-act play by award-winning Ojibway dramatist Drew Hayden Taylor, evolved from a piece published in the Globe and Mail as the 1990 annual Christmas story. Produced by De-ba-jeh-mu-jig Theatre Group of Manitoulin Island, Someday premiered November 4, 1991, at Wikwemikong Reserve and has toured throughout Ontario.
Taylor bases the dramatic situation on decades of Canadian social policy that allowed the Children's Aid Society to remove Native children from their reserve homes and parents and place them in white, middle class surroundings.
As in The Bootlegger Blues and Toronto at Dreamer's Rock/Education is Our Right,Taylor sets the story in an Ojibway community on a fictional reserve. The time is a week before Christmas 1991. The cast of four includes Anne Wabung, fifty-three, who has never completely given up hope of "someday" reuniting with her baby Grace, lost to her for thirty-five years, or of "someday" becoming rich thanks to the lottery tickets she faithfully buys. Live-at-home twenty-three-year-old daughter Barb and her romantic interest, Rodney, who acts as narrator and chorus to fill any gaps in the story for the audience, are joined by Janice Wirth, the long-lost Grace, now a successful Toronto lawyer, to complete the cast line-up.
Taylor juxtaposes a fantastic lottery win with a realistic family reunion. When Anne's "someday" finally arrives, the outcome of her Christmas gifts is poignantly unexpected for all characters.
Taylor endows his characters with charm, humour and wit, especially as they deal with the particular circumstances of daily life on a reserve. The dialogue flows smoothly and resonates with the emotional integrity of the characters. Secondary school students should appreciate the contemporary issues presented in the play.
Darleen Golke is a teacher-librarian at Fort Richmond Collegiate in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
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