NEW YORK –Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was arriving at a Broadway play Wednesday for a performance of Canadian 9/11-inspired musical “Come From Away.”
He was preceded at the midtown Manhattan theatre by the man who was actually prime minister on the day of those attacks.
Jean Chretien arrived moments before the current prime minister and shared some memories about the tragic events that inspired the story being told on stage.
Chretien says he and the minister of transportation were made aware of residents of Gander, N.L. taking in thousands of passengers when U.S. air space was closed following the tragedy.
He also recalled speaking with then-president George W. Bush about Canada’s role in assisting its crisis-stricken neighbour.
Created by husband-and-wife team Irene Sankoff and David Hein, “Come From Away” is set in the remote East Coast town in the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.
The town saw its population double in size after local residents sheltered 6,579 passengers and crew from 38 planes diverted when U.S. air space was closed following the tragedy
“Come From Away” had its official Broadway opening on Sunday, which was followed by widespread critical raves from publications including The New York Times, The Washington Post and Chicago Tribune.
Prior to its arrival on the Great White Way, the homegrown production had earned strong reviews as it criss-crossed the continent with shows in La Jolla, Calif., Washington, D.C., Seattle and Toronto.
Trudeau previously announced on Twitter that he planned to attend the show with his wife, Sophie Gregoire Trudeau, and that he was “looking forward to showing New Yorkers Canada at its best.”