Bunk #7 hits the road in BC to share residential school experience

Four male cast members rehearse a scene around a table.
Percy Stephens (left), Kiefer Collison (centre left), CJ Budden (centre right), Stuart Stephens (right), in rehearsal for Bunk #7. Photo courtesy of Marianne Brorup Weston.
Morgyn Budden - CFNR - TerraceBC | 20-09-2022
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Editor's Note: Morgyn Budden is related to one of the cast members of Bunk #7. 

After nearly 20 years in the making, the story of Bunk #7 will be told across northern B.C. 

Bunk #7 is a play written by the late Larry Guno which tells the story of a group of boys who were involved in the 1961 riot at the Edmonton Residential School. The story is based on some of Guno’s own experiences in the school. 

Guno was a Nisga’a man who was born in Aiyansh and became MLA for Atlin in 1986, holding office until 1991. In 2001, Guno met Marianne Brorup Weston, who wanted to start an Indigenous theatre company, which became The Raven Collective. 

Over the next couple of years Weston worked with Guno to tell his story. There was a plan to debut the play at a 2006 Toronto Indigenous theatre festival, but was put aside following the passing of Guno. 

Since then, Weston has been working to bring this play to life. Bunk #7 debuted last November at the R.E.M Lee Theatre in Terrace. Weston said that immediately after the show, there were questions regarding the future of the play, which came just before Weston received an invitation to bring the performance to Fort Nelson. 

Now, almost a year after the initial debut, and with all new cast members, the first showing will be held on Sept. 29 at the R.E.M Lee. The cast and crew will then hit the road to tell the story in eight communities, touring from Oct. 8 to Nov. 15.

Listen to the CFNR story with Weston below: