Here are some responses to empty by students who have seen the play since opening:
- The play was absolutely amazing and it really made me think about how difficult things are for others.
- The play was very effective because it moved me so much that I went to talk with someone about volunteering at Winnipeg Harvest.
- I learned so much from this play. I didn’t realize just how many people have to use food banks and have to make decisions like whether to feed their families or pay rent.
- The play made me respect volunteers more and realize just how many volunteers places like that need.
- I would tell the writer/director/actors that they did an amazing job and that it was really moving and heartbreaking.
- It felt real, like I had actually walked into and viewed the lives of people who visit food banks.
- I learned that giving food to the Winnipeg Harvest helps a lot because there isn’t always enough food to even go around at the time.
- It was valuable for me because I never knew what happened exactly after donating food. All I knew was that it got sent somewhere. So I saw how food banks work and the different minds of people who go there.
- I learned that it’s always a bad idea to judge because people that go to food banks aren’t always homeless, just hungry.
- It really helped to open my eyes. It showed me that volunteering can be a very rewarding thing.
- It made me want to go and volunteer and give food.
- I found the presentation effective. It made me want to go help out at a food bank and really made me feel for those that rely on it.
- I learned how food banks really work and how it really affects people.
- I do think it was valuable to see the performance. It has changed how I see food banks.
-I never knew that so many people used food banks… I thought it was just poor people.
- Really good. Hard message to hear.
- I volunteer at something similar in my home country (Brazil), and I was surprised that people in Canada had them too. I never would have believed that Canada had poor people. But you do.
- It made me sad. We throw out so much food in a week. Or waste it so much. Was interesting. Wish I could have made my parents watch it.
- Hard to see some of the people in the front row. The overall message was good.
- Why do we spend so much time talking about other people, when we have poor hungry people in the city? That makes me mad.
- I agree with that guy that the drug dealer should not be allowed to use the food bank.
- That old lady was funny. i can’t believe people use Harvest for years. That was an eye opener.
- It was effective the way they did the background stories on some of the characters so you could know why they were there.
- It showed how all kinds of people use it. I though Sabrina was applying for a job. She didn’t look like the kind of person who would need it.
- It changed my way to think of food banks because I only thought a person who’s too lazy to work goes to get food but people go there to feed their family.
- The actors did a very good job playing their roles. They also made it very clear why they were there. The presentation really showed how it is at a food bank and how hard it can be. I learned that not everyone who goes to a food bank is “homeless” but there are a lot of reasons why people may need to go to a food bank. I think it was valuable and changed my thoughts on food banks in a positive way.
- Good acting made the play easy to follow. It showed what people that use food banks go through. More people use food banks than I thought. There are MANY reasons to use food banks. Play was great; very realistic.
- I found that the play was very effective because people now realize why people go to food banks. Watching a play like this helps people to know what actually goes on in food banks and why people go.
- I felt sad because the people were poor and had no money to buy food. I think food banks are a good idea to help people.
- The actors showed their emotions very well and you could tell by their facial expression what they were feeling. The presentation was effective because it really made me think about people that have to use food banks and it really made me want to donate to food banks and feel appreciative of what I have. I learnt a little about how food banks work and that they are only allowed to have just enough or maybe not enough food for 2 weeks. It makes me want to help those who don’t have or can’t afford the things I have.
- The thing I found effective about the play was the inside scoop of their actual life at home. I learned that people using food banks are just like anyone else. I never knew how food banks worked and now I can get the gist of it.
- The actors were very believable in the way they talked/looked. It was almost like watching a movie. I was a little confused with the whole Tina character. I learned that not everyone can afford food and get all the stuff they want; it’s more about the needs. Also, they became desperate for little things. I don’t see it as “get a job and make money.” It was more of some people are in tough situations and are trying their best.
- I really loved how everyone would freeze when they were telling each personal story. I thought it was better than getting off the stage completely. I thought it was rather effective and well suited for the audience. I learned that some people need help in order for them to support their families. I also learned that everyone has a story and we shouldn’t judge people as much. Now I know that food banks aren’t to be feared and that going to one doesn’t make you weak. Don’t change a thing!
- The actors did a really good job of freezing when there was another scene going on. The play was realistic. I learned that there are many people that have a rough life and sometimes it’s really hard for them to afford food. I think it was valuable to have seen the performance. It helped me realize that even if people go to food banks they still may not be able to afford enough food.
- I thought the acting was very realistic and I liked how they showed everyone’s point of view. I thought the “sidebars” were effective in showing their stories. I learned there is more than one side to every story and I think it gave me a better look at people’s lives. Keep it up!
- Good job; quite believable. I didn’t know how food banks “worked” and I learned that they are some people’s only hope.
- I thought the presentation was effective because it showed how it really is at food banks – appeared realistic. I learned that life is hard and that a lot of people need food banks to live. It showed me what it’s really like to be less fortunate.
- They were very good. Every movement and expression was very practiced and looked really good. I learnt that lots of different people go to food banks and there are a lot of volunteers. It was valuable to see the performance. It has not changed or developed my ideas on food banks because I have been to a couple of food banks with my mother throughout the years. I think it started when I was in grade 6 and still do once in a blue moon. I understand how it feels to go to a food bank.
- It was very effective. The actors displayed their parts very well and got across each unique situation effectively. I learned that there are different situations that can cause people to go to a food bank. I have volunteered at food banks before so I was not as ignorant of them as some people.
In the Press
Working Together. Fall 2012 - Running on Empty
PRESS RELEASE - November 16, 2011 - Playwright hopes to capture full story with her new play empty