February 28 - March 23, 2013
How Has My Love Affected You?
Produced in association with
By Marcus Youssef
A Family Memoir
Marcus Youssef has a "difficult" relationship with his mother, Roleene. When the playwright discovers a storage locker full of her journals, he begins to delve into her history—and his own. Filled with humour, tension, and affection, How Has My Love Affected You? questions the nature of familial obligation: what do we owe to each other, and what do we owe to ourselves?
Running time: approx. 85 minutes (no intermission)
"Laughter and heartbreak…forges a genuine emotional connection with the audience" –Erika Thorkelson, The Vancouver Sun [Read More]
"Brave, candid … will resonate in different ways with everyone" —Jerry Wasserman, The Province [Read More]
"Unleashing Mom’s Creative Urges" –The Province preview, Glen Schaefer [Read More]
"Marcus Youssef gets even more personal with memoir" –The Vancouver Sun, Marc Leiren-Young [Read More]
"Cathartic and life-affirming" —Jo Ledingham, The Vancouver Courier [Read More]
"Spring Arts Preview" –The Georgia Straight, Colin Thomas [Read More]
"We were entertained, beautifully and charmingly" –Alex Waterhouse-Hayward, blogger [Read More]
"At once brave, clever, challenging, and insightful" –Baird Blackstone, Broken Leg Reviews [Read More]
"Engagingly funny, sad, and quirky" –Mark Robins, GayVancouver [Read More]
"Complex, humourous, intelligently staged, and lovingly told" –Ariane Colenbrander, blogger [Read More]
"You have to see this show!" —Katie Bennison, BCBuzz [Read More]
"Magnificent storytelling" —Eddie Tafber, Taste and Sip Magazine [Read More]
"Very heartfelt" —Alexander Hutt, PressPlus1 [Read More]
"Courageous" –John Jane, Review Vancouver [Read More]
"Makes you marvel at the breadth of human experience" –Kimberley Davison, Vancouver Vantage [Read More]
"Marcus Youssef's play was an amazing heart-wrenching but life-affirming production. We all are born into families of individuals who are flawed in one way or another and what is done in the name of love does not always have the intended consequences. It was wonderful to experience Marcus bravely opening up his heart to share his deep love for his mother and his son with his audience. By the end of the performance it seemed that we had been friends forever"
"The production was Amazing!! It was compellingly honest and heartfelt. The music was beautiful. The best production we have seen all year!!"
"Really loved this. A brave journey I was honoured to be a part of"
"The play was very simple and affecting. The words from Roleene's diaries turned into music by Veda Hille played by Zak Youssef were a highlight. With Marcus's work the emotions are real. Naomi Sider's set added a lot"
"Marcus Youssef is a brave man to expose himself and his family to all. This is a very heartfelt, moving and funny play, beautifully produced and directed. One could feel that the audience was completely engaged for 85 minutes. Kudos to Marcus, and to his charming son Zak. Thanks for such a great talkback evening!"
"Marcus Youssef’s play How Has My Love Affected You? unpacks a life’s worth of complexities and allows the tensions of a lifetime to be set to the music of the stage. In the rhythm of a father and son relationship (both real and scripted), audience members see that what comes out of boxes and what refuses to stay hidden—a journal written decades ago, or a series of post-it notes rescued from a wall—affect us beyond our ability to see. Youssef’s play dusts off a brand new box: among the many works about losing someone slowly to a disease that eats away one’s memory, what literary work lets us know about the family already broken? Veda Hille’s amazing choral progressions, beautifully handled by Zak Youssef’s voice and piano, open up the past so we can learn to see beyond the tension, the hole in the belly, to the beauty of even difficult relationships, and to acknowledge losses few of us can understand. This is an important play"
"We loved this play. It was funny, sad and incredibly poignant"
"The acting was superb; the subject matter thoughtful, although not as humorous as I'd hoped it might be. We enjoyed the creativity of the set and special effects. And I always enjoy seeing what the Arts Club theatres are producing"
"Wonderful, funny, honest presentation. Great soundtrack. Have suggested it to others"
"This was an amazingly open and honest production. The music was fantastic and the stories intriguing"
"I was somewhat reluctant to attend this play, as my family, like so many others has suffered the loss of a loved one to dementia. I feared it would simply hurt too much! This play is honest, funny, and sensitive to our complex relationships with those we love, even as we are in the midst of losing them! I would encourage anyone who is on this journey or a survivor of it see it. The wonderful relationship between Youssef and his son Zak was palpable and inspiring....especially in the context of this play"
"A beautiful, touching, funny, and brave show, one of the best I've seen all year. I've been talking about it from the moment I left the theatre. If you love theatre don't miss this show—a fantastic play with universal themes that will resonate with anybody who sees it"
"A very moving story, effectively told using a mother's journals. The surprises unfold, the conflict is revealed, the dilemmas of dementia break your heart. I think the fascination for me was the telling of the story from so many points of view, in a way that one could gently pick out the many different threads that weave a life together, and see it fray. Also, the staging was very clever”
"Marcus Youssef does it again! "How Has My Love Affected You?" is a moving, brave deconstruction of his relationship with his mother and through it, audience members are given a unique opportunity to view their own family relationships with more insight and compassion. It's also a fascinating companion piece to (his) last year's "Winners and Losers"
Behind the Scenes
Produced in association with Neworld Theatre
By Marcus Youssef
Additional text by Roleene Youssef
Starring Marcus Youssef, Zak Youssef
Director Rachel Ditor
Original music by Veda Hille
Set and Costume Designer Naomi Sider
Lighting Designer Marsha Sibthorpe
Projection Designer Jamie Nesbitt
Stage Manager Angela Beaulieu
Apprentice Stage Manager Belle Cheung