By (author): Mishka Lavigne

Translated by: Neil Blackadder

Strangers Elsie and Matt are both feeling great voids in their lives. Elsie, a literature professor, is grieving her famous novelist mother’s tragic death. Matt, a city engineer, is trying to regain childhood memories from living in war-torn Yugoslavia. When a sudden sinkhole in front of Elsie’s apartment building swallows a car that happens to contain a copy of Elsie’s mother’s novel, their paths cross, and the two are quickly drawn to each other’s search for fulfillment.

Haven is a beautiful portrait of how certain life events can be incredibly isolating, and what happens when people come into our lives when we need them most.


Mishka Lavigne

Mishka Lavigne (she/her) is a playwright, screenwriter, and literary translator based in Ottawa/Gatineau. Her plays have been produced and developed in Canada, Switzerland, France, Germany, Australia, Haiti, and the United States. Her play Havre was awarded the 2019 Governor General’s Literary Award for Drama (French). Her play Copeaux, a movement-based poetic creation piece with director Éric Perron, premiered in Ottawa in March 2020 and was also awarded the Governor General’s Literary Award for Drama in 2021 as well as the Prix littéraire Jacques-Poirier. Albumen, her first play written in English, received the Prix Rideau Award for Outstanding New Creation in 2019 and the QWF Playwriting Prize in 2020. Mishka is currently working on a bilingual opera libretto with Montreal composer Tim Brady and on four new creations in French, as well as on some translation and screenwriting projects.


Neil Blackadder

Neil Blackadder translates drama and prose from French and German. His translations of plays by Mishka Lavigne, Lukas Bärfuss, Ewald Palmetshofer, and Rebekka Kricheldorf have been produced in London, New York, Chicago, and elsewhere, and many others have been published and presented in staged readings. His translations of prose have appeared in journals including Two Lines, Tupelo Quarterly, and Chelsea. Other playwrights Neil has translated include Evelyne de la Chenelière, Ferdinand Schmalz, Thomas Arzt, and Maxi Obexer. Neil has been awarded grants by the National Endowment for the Arts, PEN, and the Howard Foundation, and held residencies at the Banff Centre and Art Omi.


“In highlighting emotions, grappling with regret and remorse, combining the horrors of war with the redemption that only art can provide, and juxtaposing all that’s superficial in our era with the real depth of love, this play brings to mind the work of Wajdi Mouawad. Even as she remains very much of her time, the playwright privileges human connection over making speeches, feelings over ideas, life experiences over schools of thought. By granting to her characters the power of narration—an approach that calls to mind the early plays of Daniel Danis—Mishka Lavigne writes with admirable sensitivity, in prose that is delicate yet not lacking a sharp edge.”

“Mishka Lavigne’s storytelling provides us with a fine example of the resilience of the human spirit.”


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120 Pages
7.60in * 5.10in * .40in


April 04, 2023



Book Subjects:

DRAMA / Women Authors

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