The Cull at Arts Club Theatre

Old friendships are tested and tensions are high in the world premiere of Michele Riml and Michael St. John Smith’s The Cull, performing from January 26 to February 26 at the Arts Club Theatre Company’s Granville Island Stage.

Emily and Lewis are celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary with their best friends. While a forest fire rages out of control in the local mountains, the conversation amongst the group turns many corners: Catching up on family events, reminiscing about their teenage years, and debating what it means to be a “good person.”

But when an unexpected gift turns the seemingly civil conversation about the local wolf cull into a fierce personal argument, a secret is revealed that threatens the stability of the “pack,” turning this particular party into a night of eat or be eaten.

This riveting dissection of human relationships and the forces that control our deepest motivations will keep you on the edge of your seat.

The Cull was awarded a 2020 Arts Club Silver Commission during Bill Millerd’s last season as the Arts Club’s artistic director. It was originally programmed for the stage in the 2020–2021 season, however, due to the pandemic, pivoted into an audio play, released in November 2021.

We’ve been thinking and exploring this play since before the pandemic. Through staging and script workshops, the designers, actors, playwrights, and I have been given time and space to understand how the visual and aural world of the play can support the text. I’m excited by where we’ve landed and am thrilled to share this premiere with an audience. — Mindy Parfitt

Arts Club Artistic Director Ashlie Corcoran added, “What I love about this play is its ability to reasonably pose various sides of an argument. I also love seeing long-term friendships on stage, and seeing how as humans we can champion, encourage, and indulge those around us that we love most. I can’t wait for Mindy Parfitt, a sensitive and intuitive director with a great eye to detail, to bring this script to life.”

The Cull

Dates: January 26 to February 26, 2023
Venue: Granville Island Stage, 1585 Johnston Street, Vancouver
Tickets: From $29; available online

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