Vancouver Art Gallery, Courtroom 302 (map)
750 Hornby Street
Vancouver, BC, Canada, V6Z 2H7
Tickets: $20 (plus service charge). General Admission.
*Show Length: 90 mins (No Intermission) + 15 min post-show talkback after each show (except August 12th 5pm show).
The Undocumented Trial of William C. Hopkinson revisits the Vancouver Provincial Courthouse in October of 1914 and re-examines the trial of Mewa Singh, who is put on the stand to answer for the assassination of prominent Canadian Immigration Inspector, William Charles Hopkinson – an act which he openly admits to committing.
Along with being the closing chapter of the infamous Komagata Maru story, the assassination of Inspector Hopkinson was the culmination of a simultaneous transnational struggle seeking independence for colonized British India, and a struggle for civil rights for South Asians living on the West Coast of North America.
An unexpected defense from Mewa Singh’s attorney takes the proceedings from an open-and-shut case, to a surreal debate of conscience. Drawing inspiration from historical events and documents, The Undocumented Trial blurs the lines of reality in narrative and aesthetic to create an analytical historical dialogue to explore political, sociocultural, and humanistic themes. The story of Mewa Singh isn’t just Sikh history, it is Canadian history.
It is important to note that this play is being staged at the same venue where the original trial took place over 100 years ago.
“In a stroke of brilliance the play is staged in a preserved courtroom in the very courthouse where both the murder and Mewa Singh’s subsequent trial and sentencing took place” – Vancouver Observer
Written & Directed By Paneet Singh
Performed By Patrick Nagel, Roopinderjit Sharma, Bradley Bergeron, Andrew Wade, Michael Strickland, Daniel Juozaitis, Sidartha Murjani, Arshdeep Purba, Eryka Alanna
Designer: Adelaide Wilder
Stage Manager: Teala Penner