When Kim’s Convenience premiered at Soulpepper almost three years ago, it broke box office records in spectacular fashion—playwright Ins Choi created an instant Canadian classic, packing a powerful family drama under a comfortable exterior of sitcom-style humour. The play is set in a convenience store in Toronto’s rapidly gentrifying Regent Park neighbourhood, and it spins the tale of a Korean-Canadian family’s struggles with fractured love, intergenerational differences, immigrant identity and the beckoning of real estate developers. The compelling story, workaday setting and remarkably believable characters will be familiar to many Torontonians—and seeing them played out onstage is what makes the production so refreshing and resonant. This week, Kim’s Convenience returns to its hometown under the direction of local stage star Weyni Mengesha, the sensitive director best known for her work with Da Kink in My Hair. After two years of condo construction and cultural change in Regent Park, the neighbourhood has taken on a whole new character. No doubt the play has, too.
Nov. 27–Dec. 28. $57–$89. Young Centre for the Performing Arts. 50 Tank House Ln., 416-866-8666, soulpepper.ca.