Hilarious and touching, Kim’s Convenience, the play that inspired the hit television show, is coming to the Chilliwack Cultural Centre.
Based on the Pacific Theatre’s 2018 production, the Arts Club Theatre Company is bringing this cleverly funny story of a changing community and the growing gap between a Korean store owner and his two second-generation Canadian children to Chilliwack on March 11.
Mr. Kim, or Appa, owns and runs his own business, Kim’s Convenience, in Toronto’s Regent Park neighbourhood, with his wife Mrs. Kim, Umma. Around them, the area is being gentrified with new condos and developments, as well as the potential of a Wal-Mart opening up that threatens their business. Appa is grappling with these changes, while also trying to deal with the growing chasm between him and his kids.
Appa wants the store to provide a future for his daughter, Janet, whom he hopes will take over for him when he retires, however, Janet has no interest in that and instead hopes to become a photographer. Meanwhile, Appa has not spoken to his son Jung in a year, while Umma maintains surreptitious contact with him by meeting him at church. This journey of a fractured but loving family confronting the future and forgiving the past, is heartfelt, and through it all, gut-bustingly funny.
“Having the opportunity to bring the show and Appa’s story to more communities is incredible,” said director Kailin Williams. “For me, this is a story about reconciliation, sacrifice, and deep family love. It means so much to our cast and creative team, and we look forward to sharing it with audiences again.”
Ins Choi is a Korean-Canadian actor, playwright, and director known for his plays Kim’s Convenience and Subway Stations of the Cross. Born in South Korea, Choi grew up in Scarborough, Ontario, and now resides in Toronto with his family.
Originally produced as part of the 2011 Toronto Fringe Festival, where it won the New Play Contest and the Patron’s Pick Award, Kim’s Convenience quickly found its way into the hearts of audiences. It went on to an enormously successful run at Soulpepper Theatre, receiving the Toronto Theatre Critics Award for Best New Canadian Play and spawned a nine-city national tour. Soon after, it was adapted into an award-winning television series running on CBC and Netflix.
James Yi, the actor playing Appa, has not only a special relationship with Kim’s Convenience on stage, but also on television. In the TV series, he has a recurring role as Jimmy Young. During the Pacific Theatre 2018 production, Yi also earned a Jessie Richardson Theatre Award nomination for outstanding performance by an actor in a lead role.
Kim’s Convenience is coming to the Chilliwack Cultural Centre on March 11 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $35 for adults, $32 and $30 for youth, and can be purchased at the Centre Box Office, online at www.chilliwackculturalcentre.ca, or by calling 604-391-SHOW(7469).