Originally inspired by the Huron County Book Bannings of the 1970s, Beverley Cooper’s new play, If Truth Be Told, is a fictionalized account of the very real censorship that took hold across the province (and the nation) in that tumultuous time.
Largely led by a group called ‘Renaissance Canada,’ school boards throughout Ontario in the 1970s voted to ban many major award-winning books including: Alice Munro’s Lives of Girls and Women, Margaret Laurence’s The Diviners, John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men, and J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye.
Cooper’s play follows fictional luminary author Peg Dunlop as she moves back to her old hometown, only to discover the very friends and neighbours she had grown up with are scandalized by her celebrated books and determined to protect their children protected from such filth. What ensues is a small-town battle for the right to tell the whole story.
As a special one-night only event, come for a live staged reading of scenes from the play in advance of its world premiere at the Blyth Festival on July 27th. And, as part of this exclusive event, come risk your own moral fibre by also hearing the very incendiary excerpts of these original classics among others that led to them being banned in the first place.