Between the highly contagious Delta Variant and imminent return to school, the approaching fall season is making everyone feel uneasy; but there are plenty of arts events that you can still plan for that will infuse autumn with creativity, feeling, and wonder, in a way that feels safe and enjoyable. The Home Project, presented by The Howland Company and Native Earth Performing Arts, is one such event.

Co-created and performed by Akosua Amo-Adem, Qasim Khan, and Cheyenne Scott, and presented in partnership by Soulpepper, The Home Project will be performed in-person from September 21st to October 3rd, 2021 in the open air of the Courtyard at the Young Centre for the Performing Arts. Even reading “open-air” and “courtyard” feels good. How nice would it be to bike down to Tank House Lane in The Distillery and get cozy under the stars before sinking into an incredible live performance? It’s the kind of thing that would almost make you forget that you’re living through a pandemic, except that the story was inspired, in part, by lockdown life.

The Home Project combines live performance, sound, and digital media installation, examining how we are shaped by what we call home. Handled with care, it’s a cathartic experience.

“The idea of ‘home’ – it can be tangible, a fixed address, or more of a feeling, a memory. It can be fraught, an ongoing question mark. It can be absent. After a year of stay-at-home-orders, it’s exciting to work with these three artists to ask specifically what ‘home’ means to them,” says Courtney Ch’ng Lancaster, Co-Director & Dramaturg of The Home Project and an Artistic Leader of The Howland Company.

The premise reminds us of Andrea Dorfman’s beautiful and calming film, How to Be at Home, that was released by the NFB in 2020, when stay-at-home orders were new and frightening. Or that period when the sourdough phenomenon took flight, sweatpants became the new everyday attire, and people began to think about home differently. 

“Home can be a place, a memory, a smell, a song; it takes you back to what made you today. It is never inconsequential and always what we return to. As we continue to emerge back into society, we invite you to join three very talented artists as they bring the intimacy of their stories of home to you,” shares Keith Barker, Co-Director & Dramaturg of The Home Project, Artistic Director of Native Earth Performing Arts.

There was a meme that was recently circulated that joked about 2022 quickly approaching, but that we hadn’t even processed 2020. I think we’re all still in that space where the past 15 months (18 months? Are we still counting?!), have been so wild and stressful and scary and unpredictable that we haven’t had time to catch our breath, or really examine what exactly we’re living through. Perhaps this play presents an opportunity to—for a little while—sit with our feelings. Maybe it’s exactly what we need to do. 

Tickets are on sale now, available on a sliding scale pay-what-you-choose rate of $5, $15, $25, with very limited availability per performance. Each party will be sat in their own socially distanced pods of 1 to 4 people, according to the number of tickets chosen during checkout. If a group is larger than 4, please note that in the checkout and the Box Office will endeavour to seat the groups close together, but may not be able to alter the pod sizes. More info and tickets here