Okanagan production takes ‘The Walk’ to explore sex trafficking

The goal is to get people thinking about the situation, according to the playwright

On the surface, “The Walk” tells the story of a nun, a playwright, and a director trying to write a play about women who have been victims of sex trafficking.

In the depths of the play, the three bicker amongst themselves which in turn makes the trafficked women’s stories come alive.

The story is based on playwright Catherine Cunningham-Huston’s experience while still living in Ottawa. She said in 2009, she was approached by an activist nun who wanted her to write the stories of trafficked women. Cunningham-Huston said the nun wanted it to serve as a platform for the women, but also to serve as a warning and educational tool for others.

And, from there the play took off. It was first presented at the Ottawa Fringe Festival in June 2011. After a six-show run in 2012, Cunningham-Huston said Public Service Canada asked her to adapt the play into an audio production for their truck stop safety campaign. She said the point was to alert workers to the sex trafficking that happened at truck stops, and how they could help stop it.

Now, the play is in Kelowna, co-produced by Cunningham-Huston’s Moon Dog Theatre, Global Citizen Events, Theatre Kelowna Society and Fred Skeleton Theatre Company.

Beth Fotheringham plays the activist nun Sister Maureen in the Kelowna production. Since getting involved with the show, she said it surprised her how much sex trafficking happened.

“It happened so much more than I thought. And it’s like other things where you become aware of it and suddenly you’re seeing stories about it everywhere,” she said.

“The most impactful thing for me is learning just how widespread it is and the amount of money being made from trafficking human beings.”

The production’s director Kim Fournier said they’ve had positive feedback for their portrayal of a heavy subject.

“Sometimes, we’re surprised with how much they learned about the issue because there are so many facts and statistics about it and it can be overwhelming,” she said.

“It’s making them think and talk about the issue, which is the whole purpose of the show. We want people to realize this isn’t just something that’s happening somewhere, it happens here too.”

“The Walk” runs until Feb. 29 at Kelowna’s Rotary Centre for the Arts. For tickets, visit their site.

READ MORE: Hotline to combat human trafficking launches Canada-wide


Twila Amato
Video journalist, Black Press Okanagan
Email me at twila.amato@blackpress.ca
Follow me on Twitter

Sex Trafficking

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Single lane traffic for Bella Vista in Vernon next week

Work planned for Monday, Wednesday to complete utility installation

Lake Country traffic bottleneck solution still lacks funding

No money committed yet but province will unveil solution options for Highway 97- Beaver Lake Road-Glenmore Road intersection this fall

COVID-19: Vernon Towne Cinema back in action!

Movie lovers rejoice, the historic theatre has reopened with safety protocols in place

Former Vernon Viper recognized for ALS fundraising

Coldstream’s Aaron Volpatti raised more than $27,000 competing in an Ironman triathlon last summer

Vernon shutterbugs capture rainbow

A rain event July 9 made way for a glorious sight

B.C. sees 25 new COVID-19 cases, community exposure tracked

One death, outbreaks remain in two long-term care facilities

VIDEO: Vancouver Island cat missing 18 months reunited with family

Blue the cat found at Victoria museum 17 kilometres from home

COVID-19 cases identified in Kelowna, after public gatherings

Those who were downtown or at the waterfront from June 25 to July 6 maybe have been exposed to COVID-19.

VIDEO: Alberta man rescues baby eagle believed to be drowning in East Kootenay lake

Brett Bacon was boating on a lake in Windermere when he spotted the baby eagle struggling in the water

Summerland Blossom Youth Ambassador Program to hold coronation

Event will be held by video as a result of COVID-19 precautions

Pooch abandoned at Penticton doggy daycare suffered from oral disease

A fundraiser for Okie held by the BC SPCA surpassed its goal of $1,700

Couple shaken up after homophobic encounter at Kelowna mall

‘We’re not in the States; we’re not in some little hick town; we’re in Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada. And it still happens’

Summerland to allow in-person attendance at July 13 council meetings

Two meetings will be held at Summerland Arena Banquet Room to accommodate public

Conservationists raise concerns over state of care for grizzly cubs transferred to B.C. zoo

‘Let them be assessed now before their fate is sealed,’ urges B.C. conservationist Barb Murray

Most Read