Green Thumb brings play about fear and bullying to B.C. youth

Vancouver’s Green Thumb Theatre has dipped into its catalogue of plays for young audiences and pulled out a tale of bullying and childhood fears.

The theatre company plans to stage “Night Light” at elementary schools across the province as part of a tour from January to May.

Written by Ontario playwright John Lazarus, the one-act play was first produced in 1986 by Green Thumb Theatre.

Since then, the nonprofit theatre company estimates more than 260,000 young people have seen the play in various productions across North America.

Green Thumb Theatre has produced “Night Light” periodically since it was first staged, last presenting it in 2006.

The play tells the story of a young brother and sister, Victor and Tara, who must discover how to deal with an imaginary monster, bullying at school, and a hospitalized father.

“It looks at that repercussion that you have when you have an emotion like fear—fear of the unknown, fear of disappointment—and how that can ripple through your life,” Nadine Carew, Green Thumb’s general manager, told the Straight.

For Carew, the play has a unique personal connection. Growing up, she was friends with the daughter of Lazarus, the playwright, and saw the original Green Thumb production.

“I think it definitely sparked my imagination and got me interested in the magic of theatre,” she said.

Green Thumb is also producing “Cranked”, a one-man play about crystal meth use, as part of a high school tour from February to April.

For more information about the plays, visit the Green Thumb Theatre website.

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