William Head on Stage (or WHoS) is Canada's longest-running prison theatre program. Since 1981, the inmates have staged a play each fall and invited the general public. Anyone 19 or older can buy a ticket, go through prison security, enter the prison gymnasium and experience the show performed by the inmates.
"WHoS is a safe place where we don't have to wear a mask or project an image," says one inmate participant. "Going through prison ... there are many messages we get put into our heads that you are inhuman ... The process slowly chips away at you. I didn't realize how deep it went until I was exposed to the community. Oh yes, this is what it is like to be treated like a person ... we need normal human contact without an agenda."
A percentage of proceeds go directly to causes like the Help Fill a Dream Foundation and NEED2
The 2017 production is Antigone.
Background image and photo by WHoS