At 11:04 a.m. on January 21st, 2017, Jordan opens the door to his mother’s bedroom. As his eyes adjust to the half-light, he finds her lying in bed, eyes closed and mouth agape. In that instant he cannot tell whether she is asleep or dead. The sight of his mother's body, caught between these two possibilities, causes Jordan to plunge headlong into the uncertain depths of consciousness itself.
From androids to cannibals to sex clubs, an unforgettable personal odyssey emerges, populated by a cast of sublime outsiders in search for the ever-elusive nature of self. Part ontological thriller, part millennial saga, Liminal is a riotous and moving portrait of a young man in volatile times, a generation caught in suspended animation, and a son’s enduring love for his mother.
JORDAN TANNAHILL is an award-winning playwright, director, and author. In 2016 he was described by the Toronto Star as being “widely celebrated as one of Canada’s most accomplished young playwrights, filmmakers, and all-round multidisciplinary artists.” His plays have been translated into multiple languages and honoured with prizes including the Governor General’s Literary Award for Drama and several Dora Mavor Moore Awards. Jordan’s films and multimedia performances have been presented at festivals and galleries such as the Toronto International Film Festival, the Art Gallery of Ontario, and the Tribeca Film Festival. From 2012 to 2016, Jordan and William Ellis ran the influential underground art space Videofag out of their home in Toronto’s Kensington Market. The Videofag Book, their chronicle of the four years running the space, was nominated for a Toronto Book Award. In 2017, his play Late Company transferred to London’s West End while his virtual reality performance Draw Me Close, a co-production between the National Theatre (U.K.) and the National Film Board of Canada, premiered at the Venice Biennale. In 2018, Jordan will premiere his play Declarations at Canadian Stage, and Xenos, a collaboration with dancer-choreographer Akram Khan, at the Onassis Cultural Centre in Athens. Born in 1988 in Ottawa, he currently resides in London, U.K.
A raw love letter to a mother, and a blazing meditation on love, death, and dying, Jordan Tannahill’s Liminal is a full-fledged unleashing from a major literary talent.
Liminal is generous, bold, unabashedly emotional, and really smart — an ultra-engaging portrait of the artist, and portal to the art.
This book has everything: a road trip, coming of age, philosophy, mythology, meditation on the nature of self, and the tender love of a son for his mother — all infused with uncommon emotional intelligence.
PRAISE FOR JORDAN TANNAHILL AND LIMINAL:
A 49th Shelf Book of the Year
“Liminal is generous, bold, unabashedly emotional, and really smart — an ultra-engaging portrait of the artist, and portal to the art.” — Ann-Marie Macdonald, author of The Way the Crow Flies
“Authors such as Ben Lerner, Rachel Cusk, and Karl Ove Knausgaard, among others, are showing their exhaustion with plot, opting to be candid, probing, philosophical, and discursive at a micro-level on the page. Toronto playwright Jordan Tannahill’s lushly intelligent debut novel, Liminal, is an exciting addition to this school . . . Liminal captures something illuminating and undefinable about the present moment . . . A real jaw-dropping intellectual feat . . . A rich and unusual story.” — Globe and Mail
“Liminal moves at a breakneck pace, combining science, philosophy, spirituality, and pop culture . . . Readers may never think about living or dying the same way again.” — This Magazine
“Tannahill is a good writer, a natural storyteller with a strong sense of narrative rhythm as well as the ability to launch into almost mystical flights of poetic vision.” — Toronto Star
“A raw love letter to a mother, and a blazing meditation on love, death, and dying, Jordan Tannahill’s Liminal is a full-fledged unleashing from a major literary talent.” — Anosh Irani, author of The Parcel
“This book has everything: a road trip, coming of age, philosophy, mythology, meditation on the nature of self, and the tender love of a son for his mother — all infused with uncommon emotional intelligence.” — Teva Harrison, author of In-Between Days
PRAISE FOR JORDAN TANNAHILL AND THE VIDEOFAG BOOK:
Nominated, Toronto Book Awards
PRAISE FOR JORDAN TANNAHILL:
“He’s a rare human type described by Marshall McLuhan: a zeitgeist savant who can read his era, internalize his moment’s changes in technology and ideological mood, and adapt in real time.” — Daniel Karasik, Globe and Mail
“The poster child of a new generation for whom ‘interdisciplinary’ is not a buzzword but a way of life.” — Kelly Nestruck, Globe and Mail
“The future of Canadian theatre.” — NOW Magazine
“The hottest name in Canadian theatre.” — Montreal Gazette
“Jordan Tannahill is blowing up the Canadian stage . . . An enfant terrible.” — Walrus Magazine
“No question Tannahill is a Renaissance man who will be amazing audiences for years to come.” — NOW Magazine
PRAISE FOR CONCORD FLORAL:
Winner, 2015 Dora Mavor Moore Award for Outstanding New Play
Winner, 2015 Carol Bolt Award
Finalist, 2016 Governor General’s Literary Award for Drama
“[A]rtfully structured, yet full of suspense, with dialogue that shifts smoothly between the poetic and observational.” — Globe and Mail
“More than its thematic and mystery elements, it’s the keen attunement of Tannahill’s ear to contemporary speech, the directness and emotional availability of the young people’s performances, the spare beauty of Brubacher and Spooner’s staging — and how all these work together — that linger richly, several days after seeing the show.” — Toronto Star
“Concord Floral will leave you not just pleasurably discomfited but wondering if your own youth was even more unsettled than you recall.” — Ottawa Citizen
PRAISE FOR AGE OF MINORITY:
Winner, Governor General’s Literary Award for Drama
“[R]efreshing in its honesty. Tannahill outdoes himself in these pieces, and brings not only the characters to life but the issues each of them face. This collection of plays definitely falls into the category of ‘must-read.’” — Morris House Reading Series Backstage
“A collection of plays worth exploring.” — CM Magazine
PRAISE FOR THEATRE OF THE UNIMPRESSED:
“Theatre-maker and writer Jordan Tannahill is one of those magnetic humans . . . The youngest-ever winner of the Governor-General’s Award for Drama and an arts community leader with contacts nationally and abroad, Tannahill is well positioned to offer a survey of contemporary theatre trends . . . Tannahill’s prose is lively and he’s got a great nose for the telling anecdote . . . He’s a rare human type described by Marshall McLuhan: a zeitgeist savant who can read his era, internalize his moment’s changes in technology and ideological mood, and adapt in real time . . . It’s the complexity, specificity, and relevance of Tannahill’s case-by-case analyses that make Theatre of the Unimpressed essential reading for anybody interested in the state of contemporary theatre and performance.” — Globe and Mail
“Lively and passionate jeremiad against mundanity in contemporary English-language theatre.” — Toronto Star