Healing from the trauma of war
The trauma of escaping war never leaves you - even after you get to safety. That is the premise of this haunting work by Charles Smith that premiered in 2015 at the Goodman. A Liberian man flees the torture and horrors of the Charles Taylor rebellion, leaving behind his family before seeking asylum in Australia. However, the trauma of his suffering threatens to overcome him despite his new relatively comfortable home country.
A very real phenomenon
Survivor's guilt plays a huge role in our protagonist's journey. Forced to flee one's homeland or be forced to fight, this is a global story that is currently being played out in Syria, Libya and other devastated countries. Charles Smith's timely exploration into a single one of these epic journeys to safety and redemption forces us to remember the humanity of the refugee, often faced with suspicion and outright hostility in some Western countries.
Smith's play is based on the true story of former Liberian refugee Shedrick Yarkpai, who has since settled in Adelaide, Australia and having made his stage debut as an actor in 2013 in a production of Maggie Stone.