York U alumni come together in New York City to celebrate Come From Away with creators and cast

It was a night to remember in New York City, where more than 80 people gathered to watch one of Broadway’s newest sensations. Alumni, friends and staff gathered to celebrate York Alumni David Hein (BFA ’97) and Irene Sankoff (BA ’99) and their production of the Tony Award-nominated Come From Away on the Broadway stage, a unique evening for the York community both at home and abroad.

Come From Away creators and York U Alumni Irene Sankoff (BA ’99) and David Hein (BFA ’97) speak at reception.

Called a "big-hearted and crowd-pleasing musical" in the New York Times, Come From Away has taken audiences by storm. The musical has received 7 Tony Award nominations including best new musical, as well as nine Drama Desk Award nominations.

After the show, all guests got to engage in an “audience talk back” where the creators, cast and crew answered questions from the audience. Guests then attended a post-show reception at the nearby Kimpton Muse Hotel & Restaurant, for mingling, drinks and hors d'oeuvres.

Many guests paid homage to the traditional Newfoundland “Screech-in” by sampling “Screech” rum and kissing a mock fish. Filled with laughter and comradery, the evening was a certain success.

Broadway’s biggest and best surprise of the season!
Every New Yorker must see this show.”
- Johnny Oleksinski, The New York Post

Hosted by York University President and Vice-Chancellor Mamdouh Shoukri, guests mingled with many York University executives, including Vice-President Advancement Jeff O’Hagan, AMPD Dean and Professor Shawn Brixey, Executive Director of Alumni Relations Guy Larocque, School of Arts, Media, Performance and Design Dean Ray Jayawardhana, and Bill Hatanaka from York’s Board of Governors.

“New York has been called the ‘City of Dreams,’ so it’s no surprise that Come From Away making it to Broadway has been such a surreal experience, not only for York University faculty and alumni, but for Canadians and Americans who were so touched by this story,” said Dr. Shoukri. “I’m honored to be here – to be part of something that, while entering the last few months in my role as President, serves as a reminder of the profound impact York University has had on students and alumni, and the impact they have had in return.”

Watch the exclusive interview where York University talked to Hein and Sankoff about their journey from meeting at Frosh Week leading up to their Broadway debut.  The couple discusses what they learned at York University which set them up for successful professional careers in theatre.

If you don’t find yourself in the Big Apple, you are in luck – Come From Away returns to Toronto in 2018 and York University will be there. Stay tuned for details.