In a festival with plenty of laughs, a collaborative piece about suicide was bound to stand out. White noise is the story of Nadia Kajouji, a first-year Carleton University student who committed suicide in 2008. Twisted by Design does a beautiful job of telling her story and, perhaps even more importantly, creating a lingeringly haunting atmosphere.
The story is told through Margaret (played by a convincing Margaret Evraire) who is a first year university student suffering from depression much like Nadia was. While searching for people to talk to, she stumbles upon Nadia’s story. From that moment on, their stories intermingle. As Margaret follows the other girl’s story, she decides not to kill herself and to seek help from outside.
The play is gripping, especially the scenes with the Qallupilluit, monsters from Robert Munsch’s book A Promise is a Promise, who come to both girls and spiral them ever-deeper into depression. There’s a dreadful, understated feeling throughout and the actors manage to get the story and atmosphere across without resorting to over-the-top or pathetic performances. A great, touching play!