Mother and Daughter Connect as Disease Hovers in Madre, Premiering in Toronto

News   Mother and Daughter Connect as Disease Hovers in Madre, Premiering in Toronto Toronto's Aluna Theatre will present the world premiere of the Colombian set Madre, written and directed by its Dora Award-nominated artistic director Beatriz Pizano, Jan. 29-Feb. 17, 2008.

Opening night at Theatre Passe Muraille's Backspace is Jan. 31.

"Madre is a multi-media theatrical memoir that moves back and forth in time and in and out of dreams as it tells the story of an aging woman in Colombia struggling to maintain a sense of self as she succumbs to Alzheimer's," according to Aluna Theatre. "When her distant adopted daughter, who emigrated to Canada, returns to Colombia to take care of her, Madre reverberates with questions about the importance of memory to one's humanity, identity and survival and what it means to be a mother and/or daughter."

Two actors play the central role of Julia: Marcia Bennett as the elder, Rosa Laborde as the younger. The troupe also includes Anita La Selva, Carlos Gonzalez-Vio, Juliette Burgos and Rosalba Martinni.

Design is by Aluna's artistic producer, Dora-winning designer Trevor Schwellnus.

The work is "set against the backdrop of Colombia's 40-year civil war." Originally from Columbia, Pizano is a director, writer and a performer with more than 15 years of experience in theatre, film and television. Madre is the second play in a planned trilogy about women and war that began with For Sale (which earned her a 2004 Dora nomination for Outstanding New Play and Schwellnus a Dora Award for Outstanding Set Design). She founded Aluna Theatre in 2001, "which has established itself as the leading professional Latin/Canadian theatre company in Canada, committed to creating innovative and culturally diverse work."

Her other playwriting credits include meeting playce (co-creator) and Tangueratas (co-writer, winner of Chicano/Latino Literary Contest and Southwest Festival of New Plays in Texas). She is the 2007-08 Playwright-in-Residence at Nightwood Theatre, and was part of Tarragon Playwrights' Unit 2006-07. Her other directing credits include The Dinner Party (Rhubarb Festival 2006), Capturing Freedom (2005 Summerworks) and meeting playce (2003 Summerworks).

The artistic team also includes Andjelija Djuric as costume designer, Thomas Payne as sound designer, Daniel Arce as the videographer and Sandy Plunkett as the stage manager.

For more information, call (416) 504-7529 or visit www.alunatheatre.ca.