Theatre Columbus in association with the Canadian Stage Company present


Created Collectively by
Leah Cherniak, Oliver Dennis, Maggie Huculak, Martha Ross & Michael Simpson

  • Bill Jameson & Others Oliver Dennis
  • Angie & Others Maggie Huculak
  • Ellie & Others Martha Ross
  • Bill & Others Michael Simpson
  • Director Leah Cherniak
  • Set and Costume Designer Sue LePage
  • Lighting Designer Andrea Lundy
  • Original Music & Sound Designer Cathy Nosaty
  • Script Consultant Banuta Rubess
  • Contributing Writer Sean Dixon
  • Stage Manager Melissa Berney
  • Assistant Stage Manager Shauna Janssen
  • Production Manager Nathaniel Kennedy
  • Wardrobe Michelle Smith
  • Costume Maintenance Amy Marshall
  • Carpenter Chris Sproule
  • Technician Steve Lalande
  • Scenic Artist Mattea Goldstein
  • Tree Artist Lisa Bussanich
  • Media Relations FLIP Publicity
  • Photography Cylla von Tiedemann
  • Graphic Design Clare McGoldrick

Outside a window is a forest. You have an urge to go there, to walk through its twisty darkness. You have no idea what you will find. It could be dangerous to the point of being deadly; it could be idyllic, you might find a paradise. You go because you feel like you have no choice – almost as if you are a character in a fairy tale and 

it’s your destiny, it’s your mythological duty. 

Our story has no villains and no saints. Our characters are trying to understand love. Some of us stop being compelled by the forest and then some of us never stop. Who is to say which choice is virtuous, which is not? We welcome you to our tangled tales that we have created over the past four years. It is a difficult subject but a rich subject. We welcome you to our forest. 

The Betrayal was last workshopped at the Theatre Centre West in 1996. It has been collectively created over a period of four years, through a process involving improvisation, writing and many hours of discussion. 

Awards and Reviews

Chalmers Best Canadian Play Award, 1999

1998 Dora Mavor Moore Award – General Theatre Division

    • Nomination Outstanding Direction of a Play: Leah Cherniak

“The quartet makes the principal characters and other parts hideously and often hilariously familiar….Ross in particular was at her overwrought best as the main victim, her performance cunningly larded with modesty and solitude, while Huculak was a convincing absolutist in her intentions.”

– Geoff Chapman, Toronto Star, 4 Stars

“Cherniak is wonderfully inventive in unifying the material, with a touching fable to illustrate the theme, some nicely integrated passages of movement and dance, and a dark, woodland set created by Sue LePage”

– Kate Taylor, The Globe and Mail, 3 Stars

“The Betrayal is more of a cautionary tale of humanity than morality. It refuses to judge and for that, it is to be applauded.”

– John Coulbourn, Toronto Sun, 3 Suns

“This comically written masterpiece captures all the rich emotion of the subject – from guilt to anger to the frisson of new love. You’ll want to howl at the moon in pleasure”

– Glen Sumi, Now Magazine, NNNN

Theatre Columbus gratefully acknowledges the financial assistance of the Canada Council, the Ontario Arts Council, the Municipality of Metropolitan Toronto and the Toronto Arts Council.

Special Thanks to: Laura Astwood, Lisa Bussanich & everyone at the Tarragon, Equity Showcase, Leslie Lester, Kate MacNaughton, Amy Marshall, John Millard, Joey Morin, Jenny Pelletier, Mark Ryder at Theatre Passe Muraille, Mary Spyrakis, Eva Taché-Green.