Works currently in development
CHILD-ISH: a web series, audio play and live theatre work
Adults speak children’s exact words about love, life and the world in this fresh verbatim play. Drawn from interviews with whip-smart and brutally honest children, a dynamite adult cast allows us to hear kids’ ideas and experiences anew. The results are surprising, hilarious and moving. The creative team is intergenerational including a team of young dramaturgs. As the work tours, local children will participate in part of the performance.
Sold out work in progress showings at the SummerWorks Festival in 2019, final development workshops in 2020 (POSTPONED DUE TO COVID-19).
We are adapting the work into a web series and an audio play, to be launched in 2021, with the theatre version to come after theatres re-open.
Development partners: Nightswimming, Necessary Angel, National Arts Centre via The Collaborations, Roseneath Theatre. Previous development support from: Theatre Passe Muraille. Funding: Canada Council for the Arts, Ontario Arts Council, Toronto Arts Council, Mammalian Diving Reflex, Toronto Fringe, Crow’s Theatre, Studio 180. Photo: Graham Isador (in photo: Sunny Drake, Eponine Lee)
CLIMATE CHANGE & OTHER SMALL TALK:
A series of short audio plays about the absurdness of our lives with climate chaos as a backdrop. A couple leaves outraged product reviews on Amazon while their home fills with flood water. A roving band of climate survivors watch a broken TV washed up on a beach while an unnamed menace stalks them.
These dystopian shorts will humorously dial up the bizareness of unsustainable consumerism, disaster capitalism, obsession with economic growth and outsized corporate influence over political institutions. Each short will tell a distinct story and then a different story when combined together. The audience will weave together a trail of clues and connections to create this larger story. Sunny will write some of the shorts and commission BIPOC artists to write the rest.
We are currently seeking partners interested in being involved in the development process and eventually organizing locally based initiatives to activate the audio plays: climate justice networks, educational institutions, arts organizations, festivals.
Funding: Ontario Arts Council, Canada Council for the Arts, Volcano Theatre, Theatre Passe Muraille
MEN EXPRESS THEIR FEELINGS: AUDIO PLAY
Following on from its world premier in March 2020 (Downstage Theatre with the generous support of Hit & Myth Productions), we are adapting the work into an audio play, to be launched in 2021.
A comedy about culture, hockey, relationships and sex. Two dads and their sons are sequestered to a hockey rink locker room to sort out a misunderstanding. In 90 hilarious minutes, these guys get to know each other and themselves a whole lot better, while redefining what it means to WIN.
"Playwright Sunny Drake has created an instant Canadian classic."
"This is a play that should be produced at every regional theatre in Canada, not just because it juggles so many insights into the notions of masculinity but because it is wildly, unabashedly funny." (Calgary Herald)
Developed in part with the assistance of PTC and Factory Theatre and with the support of the Canada Council for the Arts and Ontario Arts Council.
EVERY LITTLE NOOKIE:
Developed in residence with the Stratford Festival.
A broke artist and her two lovers secretly organize “swingers” parties at her parents’ home, but when the parents return unexpectedly, a wild ride ensues challenging each of them to question what they know about… everything. Because it turns out that when you take on sex, you take on the basic unit of how we organize our world. We're in a period of remarkable change: from housing crises to wealth inequality to climate chaos. What would it take for us to work together on these enormous challenges? EVERY LITTLE NOOKIE starts this epic question in the home, using comedy to examine one of our most cherished sites of individualism: relationships.
Development partner: Stratford Festival.
Funding: Canada Council for the Arts, Ontario Arts Council, Toronto Arts Council.
Tom is hell-bent on using his youtube channel to take down homophobes. Ryder founded a site for jilted exes to post “revenge porn”. Kayla’s church kicked her out after she got posted to Ryder's site. Seb got outed online as HIV positive and has an army of trolls after him. Reverend Mary is fed up with the “real world” and is starting a new life in BetterWorld. #TotalKnockOut investigates justice in an internet era.
Style: using the internet as stylistic inspiration, the audience directly effects the outcome by deciding which content to “share”, creating a kaleidoscope of micro-narratives that mirrors our online lives. The piece strips away technology (no video or projections) and instead uses the text, physicality & staging to sharpen focus on the impact of technology on our relationships.
Development partner: Buddies in Bad Times Theatre.
Other development support from: Theatre Passe Muraille, Pandemic Theatre.
Funding: Canada Council for the Arts, Toronto Arts Council, Ontario Arts Council, Studio 180 Theatre, The Cabaret Company, and the Great Canadian Theatre Company.