New Plays from Chile

by David Arancibia Urzua, Florencia Martínez Echeverría, Bosco Israel Cayo Álvarez, Camila Le-Bert, Claudia Hidalgo

New Plays from Chile Top / Details
Tue 10 Sep - Sat 14 Sep 2013

The Royal Court has been working with emerging playwrights in Chile since April 2012. Over the last year UK playwrights Leo Butler and Nick Payne travelled to Santiago three times with the Royal Court’s International Director Elyse Dodgson to work with a group of 12 outstanding young writers on creating new plays inspired by contemporary Chile.

They were joined on the final visit by International Associate Richard Twyman when excerpts from all of the plays were presented to a local audience at Teatro de la Palabra (Theatre of the Word) in Santiago. This project was undertaken in partnership with the British Council, the Consejo Nacional de la Cultura y las Artes, Chile and the Festival Internacional de Teatro Santiago a Mil.

Five plays have been selected for a series of readings, which take place in the week that marks the 40th anniversary of the military coup (11 September 1973) that overthrew Salvador Allende’s democratic government and submerged Chile into what has been called ‘the long dark night’. These plays give us a rare insight into life in Chile today, from a traditional Mapuche community in the rural south to contemporary, urban Santiago, reflecting the painful legacy of dictatorship still alive in the memories of the Chilean people.

Tuesday 10 September, 9pm
_Ñuke_ (Mother)
by David Arancibia Urzua
translated by William Gregory
directed by Hettie Macdonald
Cast: Abby Ford, Stephen Hagan, Richard Katz, Aaron Neil, Meera Syal, Suzan Sylvester.

In Chile’s rural south, Carmen sees her native Mapuche community demonised, her family invaded and her ancient way of life threatened by a seemingly unstoppable outside world. As her neighbours seek to resist while the country stands ambivalent to their plight, how long will this mother hold out before her stoicism reaches breaking point?

Wednesday 11 September, 6pm
Talk: Allende, 40 years on

On the 40th anniversary of the Pinochet coup (11 September 1973),
Victor Figueroa-Clark discusses the life, death and legacy of Salvador
Allende, democratically elected President of Chile and one of the 20th Century’s most emblematic political figures. Victor Figueroa-Clark is author of a new biography, Salvador Allende: Revolutionary Democrat (published by Pluto Press), a lecturer in International History at the London School of Economics and editor of Copies of the book will be available at the bookshop.
In association with Chile 40 Years On,
Tickets Free with a reading or £5

Wednesday 11 September, 8pm
The Red Set (Tiempos Mejores)
by Florencia Martínez Echeverría
translated by Simon Scardifield
directed by Caitlin McLeod

A woman lies deep in a coma as her dutiful family gathers to watch over her. Sibling rivalry, political guilt and economic worries build as the weeks and months pass by. The city stirs outside, but the once-militant patient languishes unconscious, and her hospital bed becomes both refuge and prison for her fretful children.

Thur 12 September, 9pm
Negra, the General’s Nurse (Negra, la enfermera del General)
by Bosco Israel Cayo Álvarez
translated by William Gregory
directed by Richard Twyman

Times have changed. Viewed now with disgust by the nation whose leader she once so proudly served, a nurse takes refuge in the arid northern mountains of her birth. Reunited with her family, she sets about forging a new life, but the vengeance of a people, and of the very earth, may not be so easy to escape.

Friday 13 September, 9pm
by Camila Le-Bert
translated by William Gregory
directed by Roxana Silbert

It’s a long flight home and a bumpy landing for Aurora and José, two Chilean graduates whose love blossomed while studying in New York. Back in Santiago, they struggle to adapt to the realities of adult life. The fast-mutating skyline belies a city still weighed down by history, and what once made sense in Brooklyn looks flawed in the shadow of the Andes.

Friday 13 Sept, 10pm
Live Latin Music
Royal Court Bar & Kitchen

Amigo Artista
A live band playing a new mix of Chilean and South American music.
DJ Cal Jader
Combining Latin vibes with classic rhythms and urban beats.
In association with Movimientos

Saturday 14 September, 2pm
That Thing I Never Shared with You (Ese Algo Que Nunca Compartí Contigo)
by Claudia Hidalgo
translated by William Gregory
directed by Mark Ravenhill

After years of estrangement, a father and daughter are reunited over an uneasy breakfast. As her son prepares for a school day he will once again miss, the daughter reveals the reason for her recent isolation, little realising that her own confession will uncover painful secrets left locked away for decades.

That Thing I Never Shared with You will be followed by a panel discussion with the playwrights on the challenges of writing new plays in contemporary Chile, chaired by Associate Director International Elyse Dodgson.




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