October 26, 2014
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Creepin' (Overheard at Queen and Bathurst)
Theatre from the streets

A series of mini-dramas based on public conversations, as overheard and rewritten by local playwright/director Aurora Stewart de Peña.

More than eight people are waiting for the West bound streetcar. There’s been a cold snap, and they’ve been waiting a long time.

Paul, wearing a black hooded sweatshirt with patches stitched to it, approaches Elyse. He stands very close to her, making eye contact.

Paul: Excuse me Miss, Can you give me 50 cents?

Elyse averts her eyes.

Elyse: No.

Paul turns away, Elyse covertly checks her iPhone.

Paul approaches Jamyla.

Paul: Could you spare 50 cents, Miss?

Jamyla shakes her head.

Paul: If I followed you home, would you keep me?

Jamyla half smiles, looks at her feet and shakes her head again.

Paul walks down the block, looks in the window of a convenience store, bangs on the window, and walks back to the bus stop. He approaches Evan, who is wearing glasses with thick black frames. Evan is holding hands with Olivia, who also wears glasses with thick black frames. Paul comes very, very close to Evan. 

Paul: (Slowly and measuredly) Jiggle the change in your pocket.

Evan ignores him.

Paul moves in even closer to Evan. His lips are an inch from his ear.

Paul: I said, Jiggle the change in your pocket. 

Evan looks at Olivia.

Olivia looks at Evan.

They both look at Paul.

Evan: Why?

Paul: Just jiggle the f*%king change in your pocket.

Evan: No.

Three streetcars pull up to the stop. Evan steps around Paul, pulling Olivia behind him. She trips a little bit.

Evan: Excuse me.

Paul: Nice f*%king glasses, you hypocrite.

Paul turns and walks back down the sidewalk. 

Paul: F*%king hypocrite! 

Olivia: I don’t know if the aggressive approach is going to work for him.

Evan laughs quietly, squeezing Olivia’s hand.

____

Aurora Stewart de Peña is half of the theatre company Birdtown & Swanville (the other half is Nika Mistruzzi). You can follow her on Twitter at @Aurorahhh.

For more, follow us on Twitter at @torontostandard, and subscribe to our newsletter. 

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