If you haven't guessed by the last name on my byline, I come from an immigrant family.
It's nothing unusual in Toronto, of course. I think the majority of kids in my elementary and even high schools were first- or second-generation Canadian. It wasn't until I was in university that I got an inkling that maybe everyone's family wasn't quite like mine, that I and other children of newcomers carried different identities and stories with us. The TV series Kim's Convenience tells the story of just such an immigrant family and their hilarious, sometimes campy, often profoundly truthful lived experiences. I really got into Kim's this fall. I wasn't expecting to, but the show won me over with its slow build, its gradually unfolding story of family relationships and everyday milestones. When I found that Soulpepper was staging a revival of the original Kim's Convenience, Ins Choi's one-act dramedy, I jumped at the chance to see it.
So how does the play compare to the TV series? It's an interesting counterpoint, the same and not the same. The play has a darker, more dramatic slant than the sunny TV show but the humour and the strong sense of place are unchanged. It's a very Toronto piece of theatre and well worth seeing.Read More