WORLDPLAY 2020

March 7th:  Insomniacs: The Far Side of the Accordion  
                                                  by Mimi Branescu (Romania)

                                                  Translated by Andrei Marinescu

                                                  Directed by Mercedes Bátiz-Benét 

March 14th:  Motswana: Africa, Dream Again                                                                                     by Donald Molosi  (Botswana)

                                                  Directed by Taiwo Afolabi

March 21st:  Burning Vision  by Marie Clements  (Canada)

                                                               Directed by Corey Payette

WORLDPLAY 2020

March 7th @ 2 pm:  Insomniacs: The Far Side of the Accordion  

                                                                  by Mimi Branescu (Romania)

                                                                  Translated by Andrei Marinescu

                                                                  Directed by Mercedes Bátiz-Benét 

Insomniacs: The Far Side of the Accordion 

The Man and The Other Man meet in the middle of the night and go on a philosophical journey together to explore the nature of living. Nothing is what it seems. Towards the end they meet The Wreck and realize the repetitive and inescapable nature of things.

Mimi Branescu Born in 1974 in Lehliu, in the Calarsi region of Romania.  He studied acting at the Bucharest Theatre and Film Academy. As an actor, his most important creations include Lucentio in Taming of the Shrew by William Shakespeare (Bulandra Theatre); Bottom in Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare (Resita Theatre); Jerry in Zoo Story by Edward Albee (Targoviste Theatre); Valerio in Leonce and Lena by Georg Büchner (Targoviste Theatre).  His first play, The Garbage Man, was produced in 2003 by the Act Theatre in Bucharest and by the Fanny Tardini Theatre in Galati. Other plays he has written include Hair Curlers (produced by the Nottara Theatre in Bucharest), The Dragons and The Panel at the End of the Bed (produced by the Maria Filotti Theatre in Braila). He also worked as a film actor in A Pack of Kent and a Pack of Coffee, directed by Cristi Puiu (Golden Bear in Berlin, 2004), in Filantropica, directed by Nae Caranfil, and in The Death of Mr. Lazarescu (2005, winner – Un Certain Regard Section – at the Cannes Film Festival). 

Mercedes Bátiz-Benét is a multi-disciplinary artist, writer, and award-winner director. She was born and raised in Mexico and in 1997 she moved to Canada. She holds a BFA in Creative Writing in both poetry and drama, and a BA Honours in Philosophy from the University of Victoria, as well as a Diploma in Film Production from the Pacific Film & New Media Academy. Productions of her work include Faust: Ignis Fatuus, at the international festival Faustfest, Shining Through, Lágrimas Crueles, El Jinete ~ A Mariachi Opera, Cruel Tears/Lágrimas Crueles, a Puente and Blue Bridge Repertory Theatre co-production, and as co-writer, The Umbrella, The Secret Sorrow of Hatchet Jack Macphee for The Caravan Farm Theatre, The Erotic Anguish of Don Juan with the Old Trout Puppet Workshop, and Puente Theatre’s Gruff. In 2014, Mercedes won the Canadian Stage Award for Direction at the SummerWorks Festival with her play El Jinete ~ A Mariachi Opera. She is the poetry, fiction, and non-fiction editor at Bayeux Arts, and the artistic director of Puente Theatre.

March 14th @ 2 pm:  Motswana: Africa, Dream Again                                                               by Donald Molosi  (Botswana)

                                        Directed by Taiwo Afolabi

Montswana: Africa, Dream Again

Motswana simply means “citizen of Botswana.” The Republic of Botswana is one of Africa’s wealthiest countries. This intimate multi-lingual show satirically questions who exactly can claim to be a Motswana. What unexpected revelations come up once we acknowledge that African borders were drawn as a fiction fabricated to serve European greed? Is “Motswana” perhaps a misnomer given the migratory nature of African peoples before borders? 

 

Motswana:  Africa, Dream Again is the story of Botswana and its people as they transition from a British colony to an independent state. The play premiered off-Broadway in 2012 where it won an award at the United Solo Festival, the world's largest solo theatre festival. Written, directed, and performed by Molosi, the play has been performed across the US and is on tour in Botswana and South Africa.

Donald Molosi is a Botswana-born actor, writer, playwright, and activist. Molosi debuted off-Broadway in 2010 as Philly Lutaaya in Today It's Me, making him the first Motswana to perform off-Broadway. In 2011, Molosi won the Best Short Solo Award at United Solo Theatre Festival for his performance as Seretse Khama in Blue, Black, and White. In 2013, Molosi returned off-Broadway to perform Motswana: Africa, Dream Again. In 2016, The Mantle published a collection of these two plays about Botswana, We Are All Blue, for which former Botswana president Quett Masire wrote a foreword. In the same year, he acted opposite Academy Award nominee Rosamund Pike and Emmy nominee David Oyelowo in A United Kingdom. Molosi also appears in 2063 (2019), opposite award-winning actor Thabo Rametsi (Kalushi, 2016).

Taiwo Afolabi is a theatre director, actor and a researcher with a decade of professional experience. He was the artistic director of Theatre Emissary International, Nigeria and his works have toured to Denmark, US, China, Sudan, Burkina Faso, as well as in his native Nigeria. His directoral credits include Two Characters Undefined (2013), Onion Theatre Project (2017 - 2018), and 54 Silhouettes (2019). He is currently the Artist and Community Liaison at the Belfry Theatre and excited to be bringing new plays from across the world to Vancouver Island.

Donald Molosi

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Puente Theatre

643 Cornwall Street

Victoria, BC

V8V 4L2

778 977-6398

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Puente Theatre would like to acknowledge that for thousands of years the Coast Salish,

Nuu-chah-nulth, and Kwakwaka'wakw peoples have walked gently on and been the care-

takers of the territories of what we today call Vancouver Island. It is with great gratitude

that we acknowledge that we live, work, and create in the unceded territories of the 

Lək̓ʷəŋənWSÁNEĆ and Wyomilth peoples of the Coast Salish Nation.  As immigrants

to this land, we are infinitely grateful for the opportunity to do so, and we actively seek a

new relationship with the first peoples here, one based in honor and respect, and we thank

them for their hospitality.

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