May 222015
 

TheTrapSample2In “The Trap”, Tadeusz Różewicz has a dying Franz Kafka deliriously dream of a world of horrors that could have come from a novel Kafka never had a chance to write, but that would become reality in Prague and Vienna and across Europe less than two decades after the author’s death.

The man who wrote of the nightmare of Josef K. in “The Trial” would not have been surprised by the rise of a regime that perfected brutality through bureaucracy, and that mobilized a continent to mechanize murder on an unprecedented scale. K.’s arrest on charges he is never made aware of, the alternating stupidity and pomposity of the officers of the court, and a system where the law could change from moment to moment at whim of the masters — all of these aspects of the story Kafka created would be borne out under Nazism.

Throughout “The Trap”, executioners skulk about the edges of the stage, eyeing the movements of the characters with suspicion and disdain. Are they from the near future of the Holocaust, or from Franz’s own time? They are both, and neither; they are the representation of the idea that anyone can become an instrument of death, and that too many among us will stand by while it happens. In one of the most surreal tableaus of the play, a petit bourgeois barber bends Franz’s ear with pretentious babble while in another time, his dim-witted assistant has risen to power as a thuggish enforcer for the Nazi state, humiliating a man of science and learning before hastening him off to his demise.

Why did they, and why do we, stand by? Josef K. — and Franz — would know that it is because distance creates deniability. Most of those culpable for the Holocaust, and for atrocities committed both before and since, were not cramming bodies into rail cars or launching missiles aimed at villages, but were rather the people filling out the paperwork to make it happen — like the forms that would send Franz’s beloved sister Ottla, his truest ally throughout “The Trap”, off to Theresienstadt and later Auschwitz, where she would be killed. They never had to witness the real results of all those papers.

The executioners in “The Trap” embody what Hannah Arendt called the banality of evil. They are driven not by fanaticism or sociopathy but by a desire to get ahead and get along, and to take advantage of the chaos of the times to rise in stature. They might be unwilling to kill by the sword, but are all too willing to do it with the pen. Kafka would have understood.

May 212015
 

20110930_DSC_3593NOTE FROM ARTISTIC DIRECTOR AND FOUNDER

Dear Friends, I am thrilled and humbled to present to you The Trap, the most provocative and intriguing play, by one of the most challenging authors I have ever worked with, Tadeusz Różewicz. Living in today’s difficult world of political and social unrest, constantly changing technology and fast life is not easy. I myself feel trapped by challenges and contradictions of life, with its highs and lows and happiness and sorrow constantly interchanging. Looking through the eyes of Franz Kafka and Tadeusz Różewicz and discovering more and more traps that are part of our lives has become a true artistic and mental challenge as well as a blessing. It has made me, as I hope it will make you, the audience, appreciate the artists even more and see how difficult their struggles to create and survive are. Many artists of today, like Kafka, feel alienated, misunderstood and are prone to psychological highs and lows trapped between art and reality of everyday life. Let’s stop for a moment in this fast moving world and give them a hand.  By doing so, we will help ourselves by nourishing what is the most fragile and priceless, our hearts and souls! Let’s stop and reflect on our cruel history which keeps repeating itself, trapping soldiers and civilians in the hell of war. Let’s think about peace and wish for it with all of our hearts! Let’s be kind to one another and help each other to cope with the trappings we are faced with in our lives. I hope this production will make us stop for a moment, and reflect on life and how we can make it better for ourselves, artists and those around us. This creative journey would never be possible without an amazing ensemble of actors, designers and artists and of course our friends and supporters, whose help made it possible for us to experience and unravel the traps that T. Różewicz and Franz Kafka had created for us.  I would like to thank Embassy of the Republic of Poland and Polish Consulate as well Theatre Department of the George Washington University for helping us to bring “The Trap” to life. I hope our biggest contributors and challengers; T. Różewicz and Franz Kafka are watching us from above with appreciation and smile!

Thanks to all Friends and Supporters!

The Ambassador Theater’s 6th season continues rolling on!  During the past seasons, we produced 14 main stage productions in addition to various “Bare Bones” and Staged Readings, New Work Series, Literary Café programs, play-reading workshops, summer camps, Studio Classes and outreach programs.  All of our programs have introduced our audiences to the cultures of several countries across multiple continents (Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Czech Republic, Egypt, France, Greece, India, Macedonia, Poland and Spain). We have worked with over 100 actors, artists, authors, translators, directors and designers, in addition to over a thousand students and interns from various DC Metro schools and colleges. We have even taken students abroad to perform at the Presidential Palace in Warsaw for the First Lady of Poland.  Our productions have been seen by over 10,000 spectators in many venues around the area.  We are fortunate to have developed valued friendships and partnerships with the diplomatic representatives of countries from where our productions originate.  Most recently, our production of Happily ever After received 2014 Best Play, Best Director, Best Actress and Best Actor recognition from DC Metro Theatre Arts as well as the 2013 Helen Hayes Canadian Partnership Grant Award.  I would like to express my deepest gratitude to our Board of Directors, artists, designers, partners, friends, and, most of all, our audience for helping us to fulfill our mission to continue facilitating international cultural dialogue. We have a thrilling season ahead of us, please join our Circle of Members and Supporters and sign up on our newsletter list. We would love to stay in touch and hear from you at our various events throughout the season! I would like to dedicate this show to all those who suffered the loss of their loved ones in tragic genocides around the world. Enjoy the show! Hanna Bondarewska

WHEN: May 28 – June 21, 2015

May 26, 27 Previews at 8 pm

May 28 at 8 pm, Opening & Reception follows

Friday, May 28, Special Q&A after the show with Prof. Kazimierz Braun, the closest collaborator of T. Różewicz;

Saturday, 30, 8 pm Press Night

Thursdays – Saturdays at 8:00 pm; Matinees: Sundays at 3:00 pm

TICKETS: $20 – $40 Online: http://www.aticc.org/home/category/get-tickets

For 16 + Audiences

Media/Press: please e-mail us to reserve your tickets!

Please be advised there is a momentary nudity!        

 

 

May 212015
 
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At Rehearsal of The Trap on 5/19/15 by Eliza Anna Falk

“I’ve written my plays, so as to make difficulties for the directors who stage them, not to make their lives easy. What I like best in the theatre are the rehearsals, when the director fights with everything and everyone -The drama of the battle over the shape of the performance”. -Tadeusz Rozewicz.

How well was the author aware of the degree of challenge, difficulty and pressure his innovative, open theater would bring into a rehearsal room!

IMG_0114What I am seeing is indeed a battle of the director and cast to achieve perfection in transitions, movements and performance, and a lot of very hard mental and physical work. What I see is the director trying to realize her vision as it unfolds, talking out her ideas as they ‘come’ to her and asking the cast to make changes. I see the actors seemingly tired of a number of new adjustments, yet despite the pressure, ready to state their point of view, offer advice and comment on safety.

Most reviewers agree that Rozewicz’s plays are best appreciated when seen in performance rather than read, because of the reliance on visual imagery to convey meaning” (Halina Filipowicz). Rozewicz’s theatre does not have action, it presents situations and images instead, like in a collage, yet the meaning of his plays also lies in between those images, in things unsaid and unseen. That is why it is so important and so challenging for the director and the actors to re-create the images in such a way as to not to lose the hidden and unarticulated. The task is overwhelming and arduous.

   The Trap is constructed as a sequence of tableaux. In the words of Daniel Gerould it “is a family photo album through which we can move backwards and forwards”. The process to create the ‘photos’ and smoothly transit between them presents all involved with an array of extremely demanding challenges. The set consists of a number of movable and multipurpose elements, which need to be precisely repositioned between scenes. Majority of actors are not only required to physically rearrange the set, but also, as the margin for a mistake is almost none, to master the transitions through numerous repetitions. To add to the challenge, group scenes performed in unison demand strict synchronization of movement, a process involving numerous trials/errors and adjustments.

It may well be that “For Rozewicz, the struggle between a play and its realization on stage is the crowning moment of the whole theatrical FullSizeRenderprocess” (Daniel Gerould), however I doubt that the same can be said for the Director and crew. Pasting together the “photo album” of the Trap, requires an enormous creative, technical and physical effort, as well as time, lack of which increases already growing pressure. Observing the wonderful cast and devoted crew’s hard work piecing the ‘collage’ together, repetition after repetition, adjustment after adjustment without seeing results would have been frustrating. However, as an observer, I see what they could not – the pieces of the almost finished product, gems of scenes, quality of which truly amazes me.

The seven days remaining to the preview are undoubtedly going to be extra taxing on the production team, yet the biggest battle seems to be over and the Trap brought to life with passion and force. Although sadly Tadeusz Rozewicz, one of the great writers of our time who passed away last year, will not be with us at the premiere, his genius, powerful spirit and legacy ‘trapped’ in The Trap will be present on stage ‘released’ by Hanna Bondarewska and her team for all of us to see and experience!

May 28 – June 21, 2015

May 26, 27 Previews at 8 pm

May 28 at 8 pm, Opening 

TICKETS ONLINE

 

 

May 082015
 
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Early in Tadeusz Różewicz’s “The Trap”, young Franz, having suffered the berating of his father at the dinner table, scorns himself as a spoiled and ungrateful brat. His boorish father, who looms as a monster throughout Franz’s memories in the play, angrily reminded his children of the traps of his own hard life — long days of physical labor, hard beds, and little food. He has provided a better life for them, but keeps the family in a trap of his own devising with his heavy-handed dominance of the household.

IMG_0488Franz would escape that trap and establish himself as a man of the middle class, with a degree in law and a career in insurance. But in so doing, he wanders successively into new traps, with each escape being only the prelude to the next.

Many in the audience will be familiar with Franz’s trap of career and moderate success. He does not toil in the fields like his father, but sacrifices each day to an office and a stack of files. He freely gives up his freedom in order to achieve a higher standard of living, one which comes with its own fresh obligations.

After securing the suitable job, Franz must secure the suitable wife, but he finds himself baffled by her insistence on buying a suite of furniture he neither wants nor needs. Fiance Felice seeks these things to escape her own trap and to establish a household of her own, but her need to achieve status and worth in the eyes of society is just another snare to Franz. When she is forced to admit that she has not read a word of the Tolstoy novella Franz implored her to read, it becomes clear: She is seeking a husband, but his identity does not matter much.

The Artist’s predicament as represented in “The Trap” will be familiar to any of those among us who put aside artistic endeavors and dreams in order to “be realistic” and “grow up” — and who, having achieved financial stability at the cost of creative freedom, try to fill the void with objects designed to impress a society made up of others who have also opted for the comforts of the cage over the uncertainty of the Artist’s path.

COMING UP SOON: MAY 26 – JUNE 21, 2015  TICKETS ONLINE

Peter Orvetti

Dec 302014
 

20110930_DSC_3593I have been thinking and thinking and dreaming over the last few days about how may I summarize all of our accomplishments in 2014 and thank all of our artists, partners and supporters for all they do to continue Ambassador Theater’s international cultural dialog.  How may I  attract more attention to all great work that the whole team of tirelessly working talented artists have devoted to our performances and events. One thing is very clear to me as to many other colleagues around Washington DC and around the world,

 ART CANNOT SUPPORT ITSELF WITHOUT YOU MY DEAR FRIENDS!!!!

And I thank you  from the bottom of my heart for all your help, friendship and support and wish you

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Let me then quickly share with you what we have accomplished in 2014! We have produced 5 new productions and events from Spain, Greece, Canada and Poland, some of them were the World Premieres and US Premiere.  We have developed friendships with the Embassy of Spain, Greece and Canada and continued our successful educational programs.  Let me list some of our programs and its accomplishments with you!

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DIONYSIA: Celebration of Greek Culture at the George Washington Masonic Memorial Theater in Alexandria VA with a partnership of the Embassy of Greece and Greek Taverna 12051307936_8eae983f4e_z

DYSKOLOS by Menander at the Anacostia Arts Center

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HAPPILY EVER AFTER by Cristina Colmena – Best Play of 2014 in Professional Theaters by DC Metro Theater Arts

Click on the photo to see the Trailer!

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RAGE by Michele Riml – Helen Hayes Recommended and Top 5 Shows of the week by MD Theatre Guide

Click on the photo to see the Trailer!

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SEEKING SANTA by Jeannette Jaquish – World Premiere presented successfully at the Residence of the Ambassador of Poland

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WE HAVE AN INTERESTING YEAR AHEAD OF US – JOIN OUR SUPPORT GROUP – UNDERWRITE A PLAY OR  EVENT!

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LITERARY CAFE CELEBRATES LOVE with poetry, music and more in February 2015 TBA

Ambassador Theater joins the 250th Anniversary of the Polish Public Theater

LITERARY CAFE introduces the poetry of Tadeusz Rozewicz

 THE TRAP by Tadeusz Rozewicz…the most provocative and original playwright of the post-war period….enigmatic works that “sets up traps” for literal-minded critics, directors and audiences… …Anxities and nightmares of Franz Kafka…

INTERNATIONAL ARTIST SERIES: FISH SOUP IN ODESSA by Szymon Bogacz with Sebastian Rys, an interesting story of Jan Karski, a PolishWorld War II resistance movement fighter and later professor at Georgetown University. Professor Karski brought information to president Roosevelt about the extermination of the Jews of Europe. July 2015

 MORE INFO COMING SOON….

WATCH OUR RETROSPECTIVE CELEBRATING OUR 5th YEARS!

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SUCCESS OF ATICC’s EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS

Thanks to many wonderful teachers we have successfully completed another year of our Outreach program at the Hoffman Boston Elementary School supporting their Edison Program with the final performances of

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1st Graders learned about recycling under the leadership of Ms. Lilia Slavova and performed their final showcase in May 2014

10338726_475350899277124_8347943972779950919_n2nd Graders learned about the scientific tools, science, underwater creatures and the universe. and presented a final performance “Aliens Among Us” in June 2014 under the direction of Hanna Bondarewska and Julia Tasheva. Showcased in their artwork, theater games and performance, this program connects to the students’ studies in school, improving their overall academic performance, reading and comprehension skills, and concentration and memorization ability.

This year, we have started a program about the Native Americans and as we go, we work on developing a play to be produced in May 2015th!

We would love you help us, JOIN OUR SUPPORT GROUP – BRING A SMILE TO A CHILD - Add your dollar to the group

SUMMER CAMP at the George Washington Masonic Memorial Theater in Old Town Alexandria

ADD YOUR NAME AND SUPPORT A CHILD

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Oct 142014
 

ArianaMarlowebattle (350x205)Thursday, 9 October, two weeks to the opening – we are at Flashpoint theatre, almost half way through rehearsals. The set is almost ready, complete enough for the re-creation of scenes to take place. The Director and the Actors are now ‘separated’ and away from the discussion table – a crucial stage of deconstructing the characters of Laura and Rage through analysis of their personalities, motivations and behaviors. The process of ‘decoding’ the protagonists both in their private and school contexts allowed the Director to reveal the characters’ personas and bring them to life; and was necessary for the Actors to understand Laura and Rage as human beings they were going to impersonate.

Rage is a two character play with an extremely intense plot, based around complex issues and conflict, and a gun as the actors’ companion. Such was the scenario the Actors entered when they were cast in the roles of a pacifist teacher and a radical, suicidal student. Based on my chats with both Ariana Almajan and Marlowe Vilchez, sorting out their initial instinctual and rational reactions towards the characters they were going to become and the roles they were to play, was crucial in being able to move forward toward rehearsing and perfecting scenes.

Ariana commenced her adventure with Rage overwhelmed by how intense the play was, and how exposed she would be on stage as one of only two players. Playing a female subjected to physical violence only added to her pre-rehearsal jitters and a list of challenges she had not faced in her previous roles. Also, there was a barrier Ariana felt existed between her and the character – she simply did not feel comfortable in Laura’s skin. Whilst being able to relate to the teacher’s personal life, the actress was not accepting of Laura’s blind idealism and naive trust in a non-violent way of life, a stance which seemed to her to be totally devoid of realism.

Marlowe had his own set of issues to deal with, such as the age factor and complexity of the character. Rage is not your average teenager, but a well read, intelligent and articulate person with maturity well above his years. To add to the challenge, he also happens to be a sociopath, and as such brings an extra layer of complexity to his already diverse identity – quite a challenge for Marlowe, who is no longer a teenager and who never impersonated a young sociopath before.  He also never handled a gun, a task requiring practice and getting used to, which next to working on voice modulation, language and mannerisms became one of many challenges to overcome.

Ariana and Marlowe tell me that whilst they are now much more relaxed having had the opportunity to get used to the characters and reconcile with the personalities they had to become on stage, the challenge of bringing Rage and Laura to life is very much on and the nervousness has not left them yet. They must have internalized the tension, as I cannot detect it when observing them practicing and perfecting scenes, under the guidance of Joe Banno. What seems obvious is that Joe’s directing style is very much team based. The actors feel comfortable responding to his comments, advice and instructions, as well as asking questions and offering their input. There is always time for impromptu discussion, if necessary, and humor, which gives all a much needed respite from a very intense effort.

Most of the director’s work is done from outside the performance space. As an experienced, highly skilled director and an amazing withaguncommunicator, Joe rarely needs to join the actors on stage to demonstrate specific movements, gestures or the Actors’ positioning. His input is smooth and transparent, his intentions clear, and his rapport with the actors exceptional. The three make an amazing team. I am excited to be able to witness a great director and two talented actors bringing the play to life, adding new layers and depth to the characters with every repetition of a line or a scene, every instruction, question and response, and every digression,  exploring new dimension of a dialog or the Actors’ interaction.

It is still a work in progress, but the end result can already be seen and sensed. Cannot wait for the premiere!

October 22, 2014 Preview at 8 pm

October 23, 2014 at 8 pm, Opening  & Reception Follows

Saturday, October 25, 8 pm Press Night

Wednesdays – Saturdays at 8:00 pm; Matinees: Sundays at 2:00 pm

TICKETS: $8 – $40 Online: http://www.aticc.org/home/category/get-tickets

For 16 + Audiences

WHERE: Mead Theater Lab at Flashpoint

     916 G Street NW, Washington DC

WHEN: October 22 – November 16, 2014

Oct 092014
 

PMP_8947 (3) When I first got the script, it was evident to me that Rage was going to be a pretty complex character. It is not say that  the other characters I have played were not complex, but simply that there are aspects of Rage that are difficult to  gauge and manipulate in order to present him believably. During that first week of rehearsals, our Director, Joe  Banno, helped me with finding the right balance in the many aspects of Rage’s character. The aspects of his character  that I had to consider and be mindful of were Rage’s anger, his age, his maturity level, his intelligence, and of course  his level of “crazy” and “creepy”.
I knew from the start that his anger had to fluctuate. I did not want Rage to come off as solely angry the entire length  of the play. Joe and I also agreed that we did not like the idea of Rage’s burst of anger to come out of left field. We came to the consensus that there had to be smaller bursts of anger towards the beginning of the play that build at certain points throughout. These bursts of anger, however, have to be strategically placed or else they might not coincide with the progression of the show. I think this allows Rage to be less stagnant. I think it is a lot more interesting and more real for a character to have different levels. As an audience member, if an actor is yelling every line, I find it hard to empathize with them. And honestly, it is boring to watch a one dimensional character.
When I tried to focus in on Rage’s anger, Joe pointed out to me that what I was doing with my voice really matured Rage beyond his 17 years. He mentioned that the register of my voice had gone much deeper than my natural voice. Subconsciously, I must have made the connection that a deeper voice was much more serious and sounded angrier. It is not a huge stretch, but it just does not fit with who the character is. I had been given similar notes in the past regarding my voice; I realized that because my natural voice was a bit high, I was compensating for it by bringing it down to a lower register. However, by doing so I was compromising Rage’s age. It’s something I will definitely have to monitor much more closely. There is a quality of my voice that I have to tap into to make sure he sounds young but also mature. More than likely, I will have to decide when in the show it would be appropriate to sound one way or the other. That will be dependent on how comfortable and confident Rage is with what he is saying.
Despite the fact that Rage is quite intelligent and formulates mature arguments in his discussion with Laura, his age cannot be ignored. If we forget to address his age, the audience cannot be expected to believe that he is 17. The show also loses that element of innocence being overpowered by anger and violence. It is something I have somewhat been struggling with because what I naturally gravitate towards usually comes off as a bit older. I might deepen my voice, change my posture, or even move in a grandiose fashion. Again not necessarily way off track as these mannerisms can reflect Rage’s confidence in his intelligence or his assertive personality, but not exactly what I should cling to if I’m 17 years old. I’ll sometimes catch myself and realize I might be coming off a bit older, and compensate for it. The problem is I find myself overcompensating and lose the threat level. It is truly a matter of finding the delicate balance of youth and maturity without compromising either.
When considering the threat level, I thought I would benefit from doing some research on psychopathy. Specifically, I wanted to look at the characteristics that come with psychopathy as well as those associated with it. I thought psychopathy would be a good starting point, because the shooters to which Rage relates were described as psychopaths by psychiatrists. Rage also shows signs of being a psychopath because of his lack of empathy and his bold behavior. I found that self-assurance, cruelty, and disinhibition were the main characteristics in psychopathy. My goal thus far is to highlight these characteristics in Rage but only to the extent that a juvenile would be able to address them. I say this because he “still a kid” as Laura puts it, and similarly to what I mentioned before despite his violence and anger we cannot forget he is a teenager. I hope that has the rehearsal process continues I will get more comfortable with the voice, physicality, and anger that comes with playing Rage.

Marlowe Vilchez

rage_200x200 (2)                                                                 Ambassador Theater Presents

RAGE

By Michele Riml

Will “justifiable” violence or passive resistance win the day? Who will survive?

Directed by Joe Banno

Helen Hayes awarded director

Featuring: Ariana Almajan as Laura Whalen

                                     Marlowe Vilchez as Raymond Stitt

October 22 – November 16, 2014

Flashpoint, 916 G Street, NW, Washington DC 20001

Wed – Sat at 8 pm; Sun at 2 pm

TICKETS ONLINE

Jul 032014
 
Photos from SUMMER

Ambassador Theater’s campers, most of whom, were awarded scholarships to attend a International Youth Theater Production Camp at the George Washington Masonic Memorial are busy putting together a play, where they will be showcasing their pottery, costumes, paintings, amongst other crafts

Students learned much about the many stories and attributions regarding the Gods and Goddesses of Ancient Greek Times! They worked diligently to learn about these figures to better assume their roles in the play, The Gods & Goddesses Bake Off. A comical and descriptive production, where all the Gods of ancient times meet to compete in the one thing they’ve never had to do, a bake off! IMG_0263

During the summer camp, students, along with the help of Ambassador Theater staff, especially Ms. Lilia Slavova, made paintings, depicting the Gods and their characteristics, to better learn more about their role. They designed pottery, with Ancient Greek designs. Also, they used crafts as props to compliment their Godly wardrobe.

In addition to the many crafts, students have strengthened their acting skills, being directed by the Ambassador Theaters Artistic Director, Hanna Bondarewska. For all students, it’s their first time entering the George Washington Masonic Memorial, where they were awed by the paintings, architecture, and overall elegant atmosphere. Soon, they will show their friends, family, and all who come how godly they can be.

Don’t miss the performance of “The Gods and Goddesses Bake Off” on Thursday, July 3, 2014 at 12 pm at the George Washington Masonic Memorial Theatre, 101 Callahan Drive, Alexandria VA

Yorman Amador

Mar 272014
 

World Theatre Day, 27 March 2014

 From Literary Associate, Eliza Anna Falk

 

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DSC_0535Theatre matters; it entertains, educates and transforms. Theatre is immortal; it will live as long as we have the ability to create and the freedom to perform. Theatre is an exchange of live energy between actors and spectators, an experience which, as history shows, has proven irreversibly addictive and irreplaceable with neither film nor TV.

Let’s celebrate theatre quoting the words of its co-creators: writers, directors, actors and spectators and through their thoughts, reflect on theatre’s origin, relevance, force, magic, challenges, struggles and its relationship with the audience.

Let’s also take this opportunity to extend a well-deserved, and never sufficiently deep ‘THANK YOU’ to all whose efforts, passion and determination keep the theatre alive despite the ever-present obstacles, challenges and difficulties: to the theatre professionals, enthusiasts, supporters and audiences!

On Origins and Relevance

“As to the origin of the poetic art as a whole, it stands to reason that two operative causes brought it into being, both of them rooted in human nature. Namely that habit of imitating is congenial to human being from childhood (…) and so is the pleasure that all men take in works of imitation.” – Aristotle, Poetics

“The word theatre comes from the Greeks. It means the seeing place. It is the place people come to see the truth about life and the social situation. The theatre is a spiritual and social X-ray of its time.” – Stella Adler, Actress and Acting Teacher

“All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players; they have their exits and their entrances, and one man in his time plays many parts.” – William Shakespeare, As You Like It

“I regard the theatre as the greatest of all art forms, the most immediate way in which a human being can share with another the sense of what it is to be a human being”. Oscar Wilde, Playwright

On Force and Magic

“Theatre is a form of knowledge; it should and can also be a means of transforming society. Theatre can help us build our future, rather than just waiting for it.” – Augusto Boal, Director and Playwright

Great Theatre is about challenging how we think and encouraging us to fantasize about a world we aspire to.” – Willem Dafoe, Actor

“I long for simplicity of theatre. I want lessons learned, comeuppances delivered, people sorted out, all before your bladder gets distractingly full(…) Life just isn’t so, nor will it be made so.” – John M. Ford, Writer, Casting Fortune

“Theatres are curious places, magician’s trick-boxes where the golden memories of dramatic triumphs linger like nostalgic ghosts, and where the unexplainable, the fantastic, the tragic, the comic and the absurd are routine occurrences on and off stage.” – E.A. Bucchianeri, Writer, Brushstrokes of a Gadfly

“The stories are centuries old. They shout of discovered love and lost hope, of humor and anguish, of mystery and maidens and tragic farewells. Within three plain walls and a curtain lies a world in which we’ve never lived. A world we think we know. The Performing Arts are beacons of the times. They reflect the best of us and the worst of us, as they tell their tales, on a stage, shining in the light.” – Anonymous Spectator

On challenges and struggles

“The theatre is the only institution in the world which has been dying for four thousand years and has never succumbed. It requires tough and devoted people to keep it alive.” – John Steinbeck, Writer, Once There Was a War

“I love the stage, I love the process of acting in theatre, but unfortunately, it doesn’t pay the bills.” Kabir Bedi, Actor

 “There are many actors who (…) don’t like theatre. What they are saying is that they’re afraid of theatre because they know it will separate those who can from those who can’t.” – Ken Stott, Actor

“Theatre is really difficult, so it’s important that you have a director that kind of understands and is really hands on.” – Jimmi Simpson, Actor

“The theatre is a tragic place, full of endings and partings and heartbreak. You dedicate yourself passionately (…) to a project, to people (…) you think of nothing else for weeks and months, then suddenly it is over, it’s perpetual destruction, perpetual divorce (…) It’s like falling in love and being smashed over and over again. ” – Iris Murdoch, Writer, The Green Knight

On Relationship with the Audience

”The theatre is a weapon, and it is the people who should wield it.”- Augusto Boal, Theatre Director and Writer

“The audience is the most revered member of the theatre. Without an audience, there is no theatre (…) they are our guests, fellow players, and the last spoke in the wheel which can begin to roll. They make the performance meaningful”. – Viola Spolin, Actress and Teacher

My task is to build “a necessary theatre, one in which there is only practical difference between actor and audience, not a fundamental one.” – Peter Brook, Playwright

“A playwright is the litmus paper of the arts. He’s got to be, because if he isn’t working on the same wave length as the audience, no one would know what in hell he was talking about. He is a kind of psychic journalist, even when he’s great.” – Arthur Miller, Playwright

Mar 122014
 

SONY DSCNOTE FROM ARTISTIC DIRECTOR AND FOUNDER

Welcome to the opening of World Premiere of Happily Ever After at FLASHPOINT’s Mead Theatre Lab.  This is our third in a series of New Work from around the world, discovering new voices of young authors and at this case, thanks to Karin Rosnizeck, I am thrilled to work with a talented young Spanish author, Cristina Colmena.  I am especially grateful to our longtime friend and supporter, Mr. Boguslaw Jerke, as well as Embassy of Spain and its Spain arts and culture, artists and many friends who help us to discover many interesting plays from around the world.  The Ambassador Theater’s 5th season is rolling on!  During the past 4 years, we produced 10 main stage productions in addition to various “Bare Bones” and Staged Readings, New Work Series, Literary Café programs, play-reading workshops, summer camps, Studio Classes and outreach programs.  All of our programs have introduced our audiences to the cultures of several countries across multiple continents (Belgium, Bulgaria, China, Czech Republic, Egypt, France, Greece, India, Macedonia, and Poland). We have worked with over 100 actors, artists, authors, translators, directors and designers, in addition to over a thousand students and interns from various DC Metro schools and colleges. We have even taken students abroad to perform at the Presidential Palace in Warsaw for the First Lady of Poland.  Our productions have been seen by over 7,000 spectators in many venues around the area.  We are fortunate to have developed valued friendships and partnerships with the diplomatic representatives of countries from where our productions originate.  Most recently, we received the MD Theatre Guide 2012 Award for Hopa Tropa Kukerica!, as well as the 2013 Helen Hayes Canadian Partnership Grant Award.  I would like to express my deepest gratitude to our Board of Directors, artists, designers, partners, friends, and, most of all, our audience for helping us to fulfill our mission to continue facilitating international cultural dialogue.

We have a thrilling season ahead of us as we celebrate our 5th year.  March is a special month for us as we celebrate World Theater Day March 27, 2014 with a special message from International Theater Organization and a reception after our show.  In April we invite you to a special stage reading at the Embassy of the Czech Republic and to Literary Café at the Kosciuszko Foundation.  We also offer our 3rd Summer Theater Production Camp at a beautiful Memorial Theatre in Old Town Alexandria with a final showcase From Greek Myths to Stage June 23-July3.

And now, I would like to invite you to enjoy Happily Ever After, “snapshots of love stories, or better said, “un-love” stories”-does it sound familiar?   Thank you so much for your continued support. We hope to see you soon as we venture forward throughout this exciting 5th season. Enjoy the show! Hanna Bondarewska