The ValleyFront Cover

ISBN: 9780889228467 | paperback / softback

$17.95 | 128 pages | Pub. Date: 2014
8.5 W × 5.5 H × .5 D inches
Drama | Backlist | Bisac: DRA013000
ISBN 13: 9780889228467 | Rights: WORLD

Eighteen-year-old Connor, an aspiring author whose fantastical stories foretell his growing struggle with depression, can’t wait to be free of his adverb-wielding, solve-it-all mother, Sharon. But six weeks after leaving for university, he drops out and returns home.

Dan Mulano is an infatuated new dad and well-meaning police officer whose selfishness is veiled by the outward display of “principle” and the lofty aspirations he holds for his family. His wife, Janie, a former addict and exhausted new mom, struggles to cope with the challenges of recovery in the midst of her battle with postpartum depression, which Dan dismisses as “just hormones.”

A precipitous incident brings the two families together. When Connor’s erratic behaviour at an underground train station requires police intervention, Dan responds to the call and makes the arrest, but the teen’s jaw is broken during the incident. Is it police brutality or self-harm? For Sharon, there is no question; she portrays Dan as a reckless cop in the media, while he remains silent, refusing to break protocol and tell his story.
Inspired by an event in British Columbia that shattered the public’s confidence in the police – the 2007 Tasering death of Robert Dziekanski during his arrest at the Vancouver airport – The Valley dramatizes the volatile relationship between law enforcement and people in the grip of mental illness. In addressing this fraught relationship, award-winning playwright Joan MacLe­­od empathizes with both parties, each of whom is guided by good intentions but equally challenged by their own ­cultural biases and flawed humanity.

The Valley is full of universal truths and intimately unique characters. It’s also remarkably topical.” – The Martlet

“A gripping, emotional play that will have you shifting your allegiances from one character to another as the truth is revealed” – Calgary Sun

The Valley is like a rickety sculpture. It’s lopsided. It barely holds itself up. And yet there’s a kind of beauty in it. … [it makes] emotional and poetic sense.” – Georgia Straight

By Joan MacLeod

Multiple Betty Mitchell, Chalmer’s, Dora and Governor General’s Award-winning author Joan MacLeod grew up in North Vancouver.

Now an internationally celebrated star of the world of the theatre, MacLeod developed her finely honed playwriting skills during seven seasons as playwright-in-residence at the Tarragon Theatre in Toronto, and turned her hand to opera with her libretto for The Secret Garden, which won a Dora Award.

In 1991, her play Amigo’s Blue Guitar won the Governor General’s Drama Award.

Read more about Joan MacLeod


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news | 2016-06-24
On Monday, June 27 in Vancouver, the 2016 Jessie Awards will be presented

…many of which have been nominated! Joan MacLeod’s The Valley , which was produced this year on the Granville …


news | 2016-01-25
No fewer than nine Talon plays on stage across Canada this spring!

…(March). Tickets available here. Joan MacLeod’s The Valley will also be on stage at Vancouver’s Arts Club …


news | 2014-05-02
The Valley Has Arrived!

…in 2013 in Toronto and Calgary to rave reviews, The Valley dramatizes the volatile relationship between law … play in a Meta-Talon review by author Anna Quon. The Valley is available for $16.95. …


news | 2013-08-14
MacLeod’s Latest Play Addresses Police Brutality Toward Mentally Ill

…recently taken up this torch. Her latest play, The Valley (2013), explores just this kind of situation. … of Robert Dziekanski at the Vancouver airport, The Valley dramatizes the often volatile relationship … but challenged by their own flawed humanity. The Valley is was first produced in March, 2013, by Alberta … by J. Kelly Nestruck, the Globe and Mail called The Valley “a subtle work that avoids all the romantic traps … Look forward to the published version of The Valley in Spring 2014! …