Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau led a delegation of 600 people brought by the Canadian consulate general in New York, including 125 United Nations ambassadors, to a Broadway play Wednesday night. He also brought President Donald Trump’s daughter and close adviser, Ivanka Trump.
The show they attended, called “Come From Away,” focuses on Gander, a small town in Newfoundland, Canada, that welcomed 38 planes filled with 6,579 passengers after their flights were diverted following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attack on New York.
The show is filled with symbolic messages pointing toward the importance of welcoming and showing generosity to outsiders.
Considering President Trump’s recent executive orders on immigrants and refugees, the fact that Trudeau took Ivanka is all the more interesting and symbolic itself.
In a short statement from the stage before the show, Trudeau, who was seeing the show for the first time, didn’t talk politics per se, but instead, praised the show’s message, saying, “The world gets to see what it is to lean on each other and be there for each other through the darkest times.”
He also focused his message on keeping strong ties between the United States and Canada, which have had very different approaches to welcoming outsiders in recent months.
“There is no relationship quite like the friendship between Canada and the United States,” he said, according to The New York Times. “This story, this amazing show, is very much about that, and it’s about friendship as well.”