Adopted as a baby by white parents who found her in an orphanage in Vietnam, Lily has always considered herself Canadian. When Karim – a guy she’s liked for a long time – finally starts to show interest in her, Lily’s best friend Brit starts to hang out with some grade-twelves with radical opinions about immigrants. After a conflict between Brit and Karim breaks out when other students share racist, anti-immigrant memes, a misunderstanding leads to a lockdown in the school. Lily finds herself right in the middle, forced to make hard choices about who she really is, and which friend she’s going to believe. Set in a school facing the real-life challenges of immigration, income inequality, and fears of violence in our schools, The In-Between is a realistic, relatable exploration of the complex social circumstances students must navigate in contemporary schools. Like Youssef’s international hit Jabber, seen by tens of thousands of young people across North America and Europe, The In-Between brings humour, sensitivity, and a deftly authentic ear to the adult-sized questions young people confront as they enter their later teens.
Many of Marcus’s plays were written or created with friends and colleagues. They include Winners and Losers, Leftovers, Jabber, How Has My Love Affected You?, Ali and Ali and the aXes of Evil, Adrift, Peter Panties, and A Line in the Sand. These have been performed across North America, Australia, and Europe, and recently off-Broadway. Marcus’s plays are also translated into multiple languages and published by Talonbooks and Playwrights Canada Press.
Major awards include Alcan Performing Arts, Chalmer’s Canadian Play, Arts Club Silver Commission, Seattle Times Footlight, Vancouver Critics’ Choice Innovation, and numerous local awards in Toronto, Vancouver, and Montreal. Marcus is the winner of the 2017 Victor Martyn Lynch-Staunton Award for writing – the award is given for outstanding artistic achievement by a Canadian mid-career artist.
Well-known in Vancouver as a cultural advocate, Marcus is artistic director of Neworld Theatre, co-founder of Progress Lab 1422, and chair of the city of Vancouver’s Arts and Culture Policy Council.