Photo. courtesy of the NAC, English Theatre.
The Empire of the Son is a one man show that raises important questions which much contemporary theatre is asking. Questions of memory and migration, of individuals trying to define their identity by discussing their origins, or their parents origins, or the difficulties related to generational conflict, or fitting into a host society that did not always open its doors to these newcomers attempting to rid themselves of the trauma of rejection or violence suffered in the past. Such writers/performers such as Wajdi Mouawad, Mani Souleymanlou are emblematic of this but even more recently during Zones Théâtrales (Ottawa) we saw Sans Pays, by budding playwright Anna Beaupré Moulounda. She is a product of a Québécois mother and a father from the Congo, discussing growing up in Abitibi and what it meant to be an outsider. These cases are all different and they show how migration, generates multiple questions that each individual must confront.