Inspired by Giovanni Boccaccio’s 14th-century novella collection The Decameron, Concord Floral is set in a 1 million square-foot abandoned greenhouse where neighbourhood kids like to hang out.
In this place of both refuge and reckoning, something strange and perilous unfolds as ten teens flee a plague they have brought upon themselves.
In The Decameron, 10 youths flee the 14th-century black death epidemic and escape to an abandoned villa for 10 days where they keep each other alive by telling one other stories.
In Concord Floral, audiences will see echoes of the classic work in the context of the current age. When a body is found in the greenhouse, the adolescents must choose between mercy and cruelty, apathy and beauty.
Cast with young B.C. actors, the play also runs in its West Coast premiere at the the Shadbolt Centre for the Arts in Burnaby From Jan. 19-21 and the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival at the Roundhouse Centre in Vancouver from Jan. 25-29.
“It is crucial to us that the play be performed by actual teenagers so that their real presence and experiences inform what the work offers,” said co-creator, director and producer Erin Brubacher. “In every iteration, from the first presentation in Toronto in 2014, to this fourth production on the West Coast, we are moved by how our young co-conspirators claim this piece as their own and offer it back to us.
Concord Floral was shortlisted for the 2016 Governor Generals Award and won the 2015 Dora Award for Outstanding New Play.
The play runs on Feb. 3 and 4 at 7:30 p.m. in the Studio Theatre at the Surrey Arts Centre, 13750 88 Ave.
Tickets are $10-25. Call 604-501-5566 or visit tickets.surrey.ca
Below: The Ottawa ensemble of Concord Floral in Whitehorse, Yukon in 2016.