The Charles Dalfen Tribute Fund |

The Charles Dalfen Tribute Fund

New Canadian Work

Charles Dalfen was a member of the GCTC Board of Directors and was a passionate supporter of GCTC’s new play and artist development programs. Charles took great delight in being part of the process of developing new plays. With your generous support, GCTC is proud to build a legacy in Charles’ name.

Over its 39 year history GCTC has launched some 85 new works, many of which have since been produced across the country. To commemorate Charles’ passion and vision, the Dalfen family is working with GCTC to create The Charles Dalfen Tribute Fund to support this exciting aspect of GCTC’s mandate.

Fund Allocations

Monies raised by the Fund will form an integral part of GCTC’s budget for all aspects of new works development: playwright units; workshops; dramaturgy; commissions; and finally producing the new work. Use of the funds raised in any given year are defined by the work in which GCTC is involved that year, and is at GCTC’s discretion within the fund’s new works mandate.

The Charles Dalfen Tribute Fund Donors

Commissioned New Work for the 2014-15 Season

The Boy in the Moon by Emil Sher, adapted from the book by Ian Brown.

Great Canadian Theatre Company (Ottawa) and Belfry Theatre (Victoria, BC) have teamed up to co-commission, develop and produce Emil Sher’s adaption of Ian Brown’s book The Boy in the Moon. GCTC Artistic Director Eric Coates and Belfry Artistic Director Michael Shamata are leading the dramaturgical creative process. Emil has just finished the third draft.

Biography Emil Sher

Born and raised in Montreal, Emil taught at a secondary school in rural Botswana before returning to Montreal to pursue a degree in creative writing. He has written professionally ever since in a variety of genres, for young audiences and the once-were-young. Stage plays, screenplays, non-fiction, children's fiction: at any given time, Emil can be found procrastinating as he juggles a host of projects. Currently, he lives in Toronto with his wife and younger daughter as he texts his out-of-town daughter to distraction. He loves his family to bits, including an untrained dog that ignores him on command.


About the Book

The Boy in the Moon: book by Ian Brown

Honest, intelligent, and deeply moving, The Boy in the Moon explores the value of a single human life.

Ian Brown’s son Walker is one of only about 300 people worldwide diagnosed with cardiofaciocutaneous (CFC) syndrome—an extremely rare genetic mutation that results in unusual facial appearance, the inability to speak, and a compulsion to hit himself constantly. At age thirteen, he is mentally and developmentally between one and three years old and will need constant care for the rest of his life.

Brown travels the globe, meeting with genetic scientists and neurologists as well as parents, to solve the questions Walker’s doctors can’t answer. In his journey, he offers an insightful critique of society’s assumptions about the disabled, and he discovers a connected community of families living with this illness. As Brown gradually lets go of his self-blame and hope for a cure, he learns to accept the Walker he loves, just as he is.

Book Reviews

"A father’s candid, heart-wrenching account of raising, loving and trying to connect with and gain insight into his severely disabled son...Much more than a moving journal of life with a disabled child; it is about Brown’s quest to understand his son and his son’s condition...An absorbing, revealing work of startling frankness."- Kirkus Reviews

“The truth Brown learns from his severely disabled child is a rare one: The life that seems to destroy you is the one you long to embrace.” – New York Times Book Review

"Unforgettable...Crisp, observant and, occasionally, subversively funny...In the end, as in the beginning, Brown questions the value of a life like Walker's, "lived in the twilight and often in pain." He sometimes locates it in Walker himself. Another answer is this book." – Cleveland Plain Dealer


"Honest and deeply moving." – Tucson Citizen

About the Book Author

Ian Brown is an author and a feature writer for The Globe and Mail. The Boy in the Moon has won three of Canada’s most prestigious literary awards: the Charles Taylor Prize, the Trillium Book Award, and the British Columbia National Book Award for Nonfiction.