(WE ARE LOOKING TOWARDS)
Pottersfield Press, Lawrencetown Beach, Nova Scotia, Canada
Table of contents
Scene 2Counting Begins
Scene 4Contested Land and a Raccoon
Scene 5Roost Check
Scene 6Community Meeting
Scene 7Just a Biologist
Scene 8Astronomy with a Bear Story
Scene 9The Fire
Scene 10Hopeless or Hope
Kaktukopnji’jk (Chimney Swifts)
Etuaptmumk (“Two-Eyed Seeing”)
The Marshalls’ Journey to Find Muin’s Story
Melissa Sue Labrador “Doah Aye Nibi”
Elapultiek was first produced by Two Planks and a Passion Theatre and opened at the Ross Creek Centre for the Arts in Canning, Nova Scotia, Mi’kma’ki, on August 25, 2018, with the following cast:
Natawintoq: shalan joudry
Bill: Matthew Lumley
With special guest: Robin Munro as the Wi’klatmuj
(little forest person)
Director: Ken Schwartz
Drum Singer: shalan joudry
Stage Manager: Robin Munro
Dramaturge: Matthew Lumley
Wela’lin, Wskitqamu. May we remember how to be human things of the earth.
Wela’lin to Greg Turner for counting chimney swifts with me in downtown Bear River and for your friendship that ensued. Although the characters and plot are a work of fiction, the time we spent talking about our lives and the world around us inspired the concept of this story.
A special thank you to Albert Marshall for bringing the teaching of “two-eyed seeing,” where we work with both our Indigenous cultural eye and mainstream science eye without one overpowering the other. As well, wela’lin for giving your blessing to share the story of Muin and the Seven Bird Hunters that Elders Lillian and Murdena Marshall revived with colleagues at Cape Breton University. Wela’lioq to the residential school survivors and Elders who tirelessly continue to teach and inspire the next generations.
Wela’lioq to the ecologists who work so dedicatedly to help the land, and especially to those who have opened their hearts to “two-eyed seeing.” It’s been a wonderful, hopeful journey.
Thank you to Matthew Lumley and Ken Schwartz for workshopping this script. I trusted that you both understood my vision and in turn you helped make this better. Thank you to Two Planks and a Passion Theatre and the Ross Creek Centre for the Arts for taking on this project and for taking good care of us throughout the work.
I’m appreciative of the funding from Environment and Climate Change Canada that sustained the Species at Risk work, which i’m thankful to have been part of for the past decade. Thank you to Arts NS for the funding that supported the writing of this piece as well as the touring of our first production. Thank you to Pottersfield Press for believing this performance story should also be shared in print form. Wela’lin to Melissa Labrador for the gorgeous image on the cover.
Wela’lin to my partner, Frank Meuse, who tended our home in my many absences during this project and was home to me in every way. Thank you to my daughters, Malaika and Milidow, whose laughter was always essential and their love for the world kept my hope burning when i wasn’t sure how to fuel it.
Thank you to my mother, Sylvia Moore, and father, Steven Joudry, who both taught me to tell a good story.
Natawintoq (Nat) – early twenties, a Mi’kmaw drum singer from the local Mi’kmaw community.
Bill – mid fifties, a Euro-Nova Scotian biologist working for a research institute.