NAC English Theatre presents  
Children of God

A New Musical by Corey Payette
An Urban Ink (Vancouver) Production in collaboration with NAC English Theatre
in Association with Raven Theatre (Vancouver) and presented in association with NAC’s Canada Scene Festival

June 7 - 18, 2017

May 22, 2017 – OTTAWA (Canada) – “Children of God is must-see theatre for Canadians.” – Globe and Mail

Children of God is a gorgeous, powerful musical about an Oji-Cree family whose children were taken away to a residential school in Northern Ontario. The story of Rita, a mother who was never let past the school’s gate, and her kids, Tom and Julia, who never knew she’d come for them, pushes toward redemption. Children of God offers a thrilling blend of ancient tradition and contemporary reality, celebrating resilience and the power of the Indigenous cultural spirit. Inspired by First Nations music, Payette’s profoundly moving score also includes echoes of provocative Broadway masterpieces such as Fun Home and Next to Normal.

“I saw this production in Kamloops on the third night of a small festival season presented by the Western Canadian Theatre Company. I’m sure they could have sold out three times over given the number of people clamouring to get in, all after word of mouth had spread from the first two nights about this powerful musical by Oji-Cree writer Corey Payette. I knew after the first scene that it was destined for Canada’s stage.” – Jillian Keiley, Artistic Director, NAC English Theatre.

In 1996 the last residential school in Canada shut its doors, but it wasn’t until 2008 that Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper made a formal apology on behalf of all Canadians. According to the wisdom of the Elders, it takes twice as long to reconcile as it takes to do the damage. After over 130 years of residential schools in Canada, it is clear that the process of reconciliation is only just beginning.

Shocked by the way Canada sweeps aspects of its history under the rug, creator Corey Payette wrote Children of God as a way of starting the conversation; acknowledging the hurt done, and acknowledging the strength of the survivors and their descendants. In Payette’s own words, Children of God began as a journey to understand and to acknowledge with the hope that this understanding would lead us to a fuller picture of our history, and a chance to acknowledge the survivors of residential schools for their strength and resilience in the face of this dark history.

The musical arrives at the NAC following its recent premiere at the Cultch in Vancouver, and next year will embark on a national tour, visiting some of the largest regional theatres in Canada including Citadel Theatre in Edmonton and Western Canada Theatre in Kamloops.

Audience Advisory: Mature themes. Some audience members may find certain scenes disturbing. 

Featuring Herbie Barnes, Cathy Elliott, Kim Harvey, Trish Lindström, Kevin Loring, Cheyenne Scott, Michael Torontow, Aaron M. Wells and Kaitlyn Yott. They are joined onstage by musicians Brian Chan, Allen Cole, Martin Reisle and Elliot Vaughan.

Assisting Mr Payette in bringing this musical to the stage are Production Designer Marshall McMahen; Music Director Allen Cole; Orchestrator Elliot Vaughan; Dramaturg Sybille Pearson; Associate Director Julie McIsaac; Lighting Designer Jeff Harrison; Movement Director Raes Calvert; Sound Designer Kris Boyd; Fight Directors Mike Kovac and Ryan McNeill Bolton;
Stage Manager Samira Rose; Assistant Stage Manager Jessica Schacht; and Jewelry Designer Helen Oro.

Children of God
June 7 - 18, 2017
NAC Theatre

Wednesday, June 7 and Thursday, Jun 8
Friday, June 9

Children of God Points of View:
Saturday, June 10 at 12:45 p.m. in NAC Salon
Experience this English Theatre production through an encounter with two special guests, each offering their own unique perspective on the piece.

Wednesday, June 14 and Thursday, June 15.
Stay in your seat for a post-show question-and-answer session with cast members of Children of God.

Performance Schedule:

Tuesday through Saturday at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday at 2 pm;

PLUS Sunday June 18 at 2 pm
(no performances Monday)

From $25 to $75

Tickets are available:

  • Online on the NAC’s website:
  • In person at the NAC Box Office*
  • At all Ticketmaster outlets**
  • By telephone 1-888-991-2787**

*In person tickets for NAC 2016-17 performances can be purchased:
Welcome Centre
The Welcome Centre, located at 54 Elgin St. (corner of Queen St.) Monday to Friday, from 9am to 9pm and Saturday, from 10am to 9pm

Box Office Kiosk
Located in the NAC lobby. 

Open on event days only as of two hours prior to the first show start time until 15 minutes after the last show start time, and available for ticket pick-up and walk up purchases.

**A service charge applies on all purchases made through Ticketmaster.

Groups of 10 or more contact or visit

Find out more about the NAC English Theatre on Facebook and YouTube. To discover some fascinating facts about Children of God visit

Extended Stay Canada is proud to be the Official Hotel Partner for the National Arts Centre English Theatre.


CANADA SCENE is a living portrait – a daring, eclectic reflection of contemporary Canadian arts and culture.

The Canada Scene Festival will bring together 1,000 talented artists in music, theatre, dance, visual and media arts, film, circus, culinary arts and more in over 100 events for an extraordinary national celebration.

The festival will shine a spotlight on iconic artists who inspire us, dynamic artists who challenge us, and the diverse cultures that bring us together. The Scene festivals began in 2003 with Atlantic Scene. That festival’s success was followed by Alberta Scene (2005), Quebec Scene (2007), BC Scene (2009), Prairie Scene (2011), Northern Scene (2013), and Ontario Scene (2015), and this summer, Canada Scene rounds out the spotlight on the arts and culture and looks towards a nationally-focused festival.


Canada Scene wishes to thank presenting Sponsor TD, the Government of Canada, Canada 150, Ontario 150, and the Canada Council for the Arts. The festival is also made possible by the support of the provinces and territories of Alberta, Ontario, Newfoundland and Labrador, New Brunswick, Northwest Territories, Nova Scotia, Nunavut, and Yukon.

A festival of this magnitude would not be possible without the generous support of individual donors and corporate partners. The National Arts Centre Foundation thanks Honorary Patrons Margaret and David Fountain, Major Partners Bonnie and John Buhler, Supporting Partners Gail Asper, O.C, O.M, LL.D., and Michael Paterson, PCL Constructors Canada Inc., and The Slaight Family Foundation, as well as the NAC Friends - Canada Scene Adrian Burns & Gregory Kane, Q.C, and Susan Glass and Arni Thorsteinson.

Thank you to Festival Partner the Canada Dance Festival, Hotel Partner Sheraton Ottawa Hotel, Official Rail Partner VIA Rail, Travel Partners Air North and First Air, Major Media Partner CBC/Radio- Canada, Media Partners Ottawa Citizen and LeDroit.



Sean Fitzpatrick
Communications Officer, English Theatre
National Arts Centre
613 947 7000, x389


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