Stage Door News

Toronto: Young People’s Theatre presents “Truth” by Kanika Ambrose January 29-February 23

Friday, January 12, 2024

This February, Young People’s Theatre (YPT) is proud to present the world premiere of Truth – a powerful adaptation of the Governor General’s Award-winning novel, The Gospel Truth by Caroline Pignat. Written by celebrated playwright and librettist Kanika Ambrose and directed by award-winning actor and director Sabryn Rock, Truth transports audiences back in time to an 1850’s Virginian plantation where where the life of a young Black girl is changed forever with the arrival of a stranger from the north. Truth makes its debut on the Ada Slaight Stage from Jan. 29 – Feb. 23, 2024. Recommended for ages 10 and up.

“I am beyond grateful to be directing Truth as Kanika Ambrose’s writing is beautifully nuanced, powerful and challenging in a thrilling way,” says Director Sabryn Rock. “What is particularly inspiring to me is the play’s heroine, Phoebe: a mute teenaged girl who is enslaved yet who somehow finds the courage to risk everything to seek freedom in the face of brutal oppression. Working on a narrative that follows a young Black female character who is underestimated and surprises everyone (including herself) by what she is capable of, this is a story I never got to see much in the theatre growing up. I hope audiences can relate to this journey and are empowered by Phoebe’s spirit.”

Truth marks the second collaboration between Rock and Ambrose, who first worked together on the critically-acclaimed our place (Dora Award for Outstanding New Play, 2023). The production has been in development at YPT since 2019 as part of the company’s New Play Development program. “I wanted to write a story that centered on the Black characters and brings their beauty and humanity to the forefront of difficult circumstances,” says Ambrose. “Both Sabryn and YPT have shown really careful and thoughtful planning around the needs of both the young audiences that will see the play and the needs of this story. And that is really special.”

From the American South to St. Catharines, Ontario, Truth chronicles the fierce strength and resilience of a community as it struggles to find freedom. It is a powerful story about finding and creating hope in even the darkest of times.

“I think it is important to remind ourselves of our history: our victories and our defeats, the good and the ugly aspects of how we, as people, arrived at our present reality,” says YPT Artistic Director Herbie Barnes.

“Our young people tend to live in the ‘right now’. Thus, at times, a gentle reminder of who we are – and who we were – helps to ensure our future will be more promising. ”Truth features performances by Wade Bogert-O'Brien, Jasmine Case, Chiamaka Glory, Dante Jemmott, Dominique LeBlanc, Jeff Miller and Micah Woods.

Additional credits include Set & Costume Designer: Shannon Lea Doyle; Lighting Designer: Shawn Henry; Sound Designer: Thomas Ryder Payne; Hair, Wigs and Makeup Designer: Brooklyn Johnson; Fight & Intimacy Director: Anita Nittoly; Historical Movement Consultant: Fairy J; Assistant Lighting Designer: Connor Price-Kelleher; Assistant Sound Designer: Raha Javanfar; Puppet Creator: Nina Hartt; Stage Manager: Laura Baxter; Assistant Stage Manager: Anna R. Kaltenbach.

YPT’s 2023.24 Season is Proudly Supported by The Slaight Family Foundation as Lead Donor and BMO as Season Presenting Sponsor.



Previews: Jan. 29 & 30 at 10:15AM

Weekdays: Feb. 6, 8, 13, 15, 21 & 22 at 10:15AM & 1:00PM | Feb. 7, 9 & 23 at 10:30AM

Weekends & Holiday: Feb. 3, 10, 17 & 19 at 2:00PM | Feb. 4, 11 & 18 at 1:00PM

Relaxed Performances: Feb. 9 at 10:30AM & Feb. 10 at 2:00PM

Recommended for ages 10+

Run time: Approx. 70 minutes

Tickets: $10-$39 (plus HST & service charges)

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