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    ISBN: 9780889224773 | Paperback

    128 pages | Pub. Date: 20030315
    6.00 W × 9.00 H × 0.35 D inches
    Backlist | Drama | Bisac: DRA013000
    Rights: WORLD


In Bordertown Café, seventeen-year-old Jimmy faces the archetypal Canadian dilemma: stay home in Canada, with all its obvious flaws, or go south (young man) to the Land of Opportunity. Jimmy’s dad is the powerfully encoded Western hero of American popular myth – the cowboy as trucker, living his freedom and riding the roads of Wyoming. He offers Jimmy the prosperity of his new American home, a large modern house fully equipped with everything, including a capable new wife. In contrast, Jimmy’s mom, Marlene, is a failed wife and a weak, ­tentative mother. The home she has made for herself and her son “on the Canadian side of nowhere” is provisional and shabby: half finished, ill equipped, badly decorated.

Jimmy’s conflict is writ large as the play dramatizes Canada’s struggle to negotiate a unique identity in the shadow of its brash, superpower neighbour. Although global realities have shifted in the decades since the play’s inception, its themes of personal and cultural identity endure.

Cast of 2 women and 2 men.

“An iconic piece of Prairie Canadiana.”
Winnipeg Free Press

“Family relationships ­simmer in humorous cross-border comedy.”
Ottawa Citizen

“A humorous, human, touching and recognizable look at one family’s search for individual identity.”
Hamilton Spectator

By Kelly Rebar

Kelly Rebar’s play Bordertown Café is the winner of the 1990 CAA for Drama. This comedy-drama is set in a café on the Canadian side of the Alberta/Montana border and is about a family whose members are torn between their unrealized goals and dreams. In addition to theatre, Rebar also writes for television and film and has several screenwriting and story editing credits to her name. She has also adapted several of Alice Munro’s short stories, including the television feature based on Lives of Girls and Women.

Read more about Kelly Rebar

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