Play Review: GOD AND THE INDIAN
By: Christine Smith (McFarlane)
GOD AND THE INDIAN is an emotional play that is not so much about residential schools but about an abused woman meeting her abuser, and wanting a confession for the wrongs that were done to her.
In the first scene in GOD AND THE INDIAN Anglican Bishop George King receives a huge surprise while at his office one day, when Johnny the Indian knocks at his office door and barges in accusing him of abuse.
Johnny, a First Nations woman is stereotypically dressed as a homeless person, ragged clothes and all. She confronts King because she is determined to hear an acknowledgement about the abuse inflicted on her and other children at St. David’s School.
This is where things get difficult because as an audience member you find yourself caught up in Johnny’s turmoil and distress, and you feel anger at the Anglican bishop because instead of confessing to the wrongs he did to Johnny and the other children at the residential school, he blames the church and says “It wasn’t my fault.”
The Anglican Bishop George King, and Johnny the Indian battle it out verbally before you trying to prove each other wrong but you are left with no clear answer and there is no justice served by the time the play ends. Johnny exits the bishops office saying “I’m just a ghost,” and the lights go down.
Native Earth Performing Arts and Firehall Arts Centre presented Drew Hayden Taylor’s play “God and the Indian” at the Aki Studio in Toronto. On stage between May 2-17, 2015,
GOD AND THE INDIAN stars Lisa C Ravensbergen as Johnny and Thomas Hauff as Anglican Assistant Bishop George King. Vancouver based Ravensbergen is Ojibwe/Swampy Cree and Jessie Award nominated actress.
Original article published in Anishinabek News