Traveling to New York during this installment of the program are renowned Romanian actress and general manager of the Odeon Theatre Dorina Lazar; artistic councilor of the Odeon Alina Moldovan; and playwright Alina Nelega, whose play Amelia Breathes Deeply will be presented as a public reading starring Broadway, film and TV actress Lynn Cohen 7 PM May 10 at the Lark Studio in Manhattan.
ARTE began in May 2006 when Lark producing director John Clinton Eisner led a delegation of playwrights and artistic leaders to Romania. That group included Tanya Barfield (The Blue Door), Saviana Stanescu (Waxing West), Kelly Stuart (The Life of Spiders), Doug Wright (I Am My Own Wife), as well as Gordon Edelstein, artistic director of Long Wharf Theatre, and Randy Gener, senior editor for American Theatre Magazine.
ARTE, supported by the Romanian Cultural Institute, is spearheaded by Stanescu, who was Lark's Theatre Communications Group International Fellow.
Stanescu stated, "The travels and projects that we developed as part of ARTE have gone far beyond 'cultural tourism' and allow a true artistic dialogue to happen. And we are committed to continuing to deepen, to diversify and to treasure that dialogue."
RCI's Corina Suteu says that they were eager to take part in this program "in order to support exchange in the field of playwriting and translation between Romania and the U.S. with the hope that it grows into a fully fledged long-term program of play development and translation." During their current visit, the Romanian artists are continuing to develop relationships with artists in New York. They took part in a "think tank" discussion on a U.S.-Romanian theatre exchange, and on May 11, they will travel to the Long Wharf Theatre as guests of Gordon Edelstein to see his adaptation and direction of Uncle Vanya.
The May 10 public reading of Nelega's Amelia Breathes Deeply, in a translation by Kelly Stuart and starring Lynn Cohen, will be followed by an excerpt from the play in Romanian, performed by Lazar, as well as a panel discussion entitled "How Plays Feel Different in Different Languages," moderated by Eisner.
On the importance of building international bridges like these, Eisner stated, "Every encounter between the U.S. and international artists yields powerful results: relationships are formed, projects are imagined and advanced, and deep questions are raised about the role theatre plays in helping different people, with different experiences, to talk with each other."
For more information on this exchange, other international work and upcoming Lark events, visit www.larktheatre.org.