Up the Garden Path & The Adventures of the Black Girl in Her Search for God
From the author of Cast Iron comes two plays that feature young black women who suddenly find themselves navigating unfamiliar territory on their own. As they embark on journeys from the only homes they’ve ever known, they’re challenged to think for themselves and to fight for what they want and believe in.
In Up the Garden Path, Rosa, a young Barbadian seamstress, offers to pose as her brother to go to the Niagara Region in Ontario to work. There, she meets an aspiring actress obsessed with Joan of Arc, the ghost of a black Loyalist soldier who wants to die and a boss who can’t keep the starlings away from his failing vineyard. Finding it impossible to ignore their demands, but not wanting to be found out and sent home, Rosa has to stop and figure out what she really wants instead of what everyone around her needs.
Based on Bernard Shaw’s short story, The Adventures of the Black Girl in Her Search for God follows a black girl who is abandoned by a white missionary for asking too many questions. Taking matters into her own hands, the Black Girl sets off to find out who or what God really is. Along the way she meets a number of characters who have very different views on God, but the Black Girl’s unrelenting questions create conflict, and in the end she’s forced to make her own decisions on God and her search.
“Codrington’s subtle exploration of people caught in exile and limbo is sound. ”- Steve Fisher, Torontoist
“Regardless of its brevity, this is the most delightful, inventive show at this year’s Shaw Festival. ”- Jon Kaplan, NOW Toronto
“An exhilarating theatrical hour with a touch of slapstick. "- Jon Kaplan, NOW Toronto
“It is provocative, playful, dialectical and deeply embroiled in contemporary debate around contentious issues. It’s an exceedingly entertaining comedy that will also fuel conversation—about religion, yes, but also race and representation. ”- J. Kelly Nestruck, The Globe and Mail
“Short, sharp and hilarious. ”- Karen Fricker/Carly Maga, Toronto Star
“A fast and wild voyage into Shaw’s original source material that simultaneously turns it upside down. ”- Carly Maga, Toronto Star
“Lisa Codrington has a wild imagination for storytelling and fine ear for dialogue. ”- Lynn Slotkin
“Lisa Codrington has crafted a fast-paced, thematically rich and startlingly funny narrative. ”- Istvan Dugalin, Mooney on Theatre
“Codrington’s voice is original and lively. ”- Karen Fricker, Toronto Star