Episode available within Canada only. Video help?
Trouble viewing outside of Canada? See link below.
Watch The Secret Path: Ahead By A Century on YouTube.

High school students write and perform a play to honour Gord Downie’s Secret Path project.

When the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada released its final report into the history of Canada's residential school system, it made 94 recommendations to repair the harm caused by residential schools — and move forward with reconciliation. Among the recommendations: the need to educate Canadians on residential schools and their impacts.

At the Country Day School in King City, Ontario, high school drama teacher and Tragically Hip fan Scott Garbe saw an opportunity to make a difference with the school’s spring 2017 senior performance.

After Scott heard about Gord Downie’s cancer diagnosis, he knew he wanted to produce a play based on some of Gord’s songs. When Secret Path was released in October 2016, Scott felt that Chanie Wenjack’s story needed to be a big part of the show. Several months later, after hundreds of hours of workshops and rehearsals, it’s finally time to premiere the play: Ahead By A Century.

On the day of the dress rehearsal, Scott invites a very special guest to watch scenes from the play: Tim “Redfeather” Thomas, a 74-year-old Mi'kmaq elder. After the performance, Redfeather tells that cast about his own experiences as residential school. In that moment, the stories the students tell in the play become very, very real.

The Secret Path: Ahead By A Century features performances by students and interviews with the teacher, cast members and Redfeather, set to the to the haunting and powerful music of Gord Downie’s Secret Path.

Credits (Click to expand)

EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS , EDGARLAND FILMS
GORD DOWNIE
MIKE DOWNIE
PATRICK SAMBROOK

EXECUTIVE PRODUCER, ANTICA PRODUCTIONS
STUART COXE

SUPERVISING PRODUCER
CRAIG BAINES

ASSOCIATE PRODUCER
RACHEL DAWSON

STORY PRODUCER
BARBARA MARGETTS

DIRECTOR
MIKE DOWNIE

DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY
MIKE REID

ADDITIONAL CAMERA
JUSTIN STEPHENSON

SOUND RECORDIST
ADAM LAYCOCK

POST PRODUCTION SUPERVISOR
KRISTINA GUNNING

EDITOR
JOHN WATSON

ASSISTANT EDITOR
HARRISON PEREZ

POST PRODUCTION FACILITY
CREATIVE POST

SOUND MIX
PAUL NOVOTNY
THE AUDIO PRODUCERS

Also on CBC