The gorgeous poster art for Mulatto Nation
From the YouthWorks press release:
YouthWorks presents its first World Premiere production
MONTRÉAL, April 2011 – Black Theatre Workshop’s unique training performance program YouthWorks presents the World Premiere production of MULATTO NATION by award-winning playwright Marika Schwandt, directed by Mike Payette playing at the popular L’Espace 4001 for a limited run May 13th – 15th, 2011.
Mulatto Nation takes place in the slightly absurd but very real alternative future where "mixed is the new white". Maizey, a mixed race young woman is taken in by miscegenation enforcement goons and detained for not accepting the new order. Her self-identification and sense of belonging are put to the test, as she is forced to question her racial identity all the while being subject to a disturbing interrogation process by those that have motives of their own.
“The subject of racial identification remains a difficult and complex conversation in a culture that heralds acceptance,” says Payette, who acknowledges his own experiences reflected in the play. “We want to encourage our young people to recognize themselves in whichever culture they feel they can associate with, but this is not something that is always fostered by others. This is truly the core investigation of this piece.”
As part of its ongoing mission to foster the talent and voices of emerging artists nationwide, YouthWorks launched its first national playwriting contest in the summer of 2010. After over a dozen submissions, plays were assessed by a peer jury. Several plays were short-listed to receive dramaturgical support from Playwrights Workshop Montreal and Black Theatre Workshop and the winning playwright would be given an opportunity to have their work developed and presented as part of YouthWorks first production.
All of the YouthWorks actors have gone through a multi-level process whereby at the end of their training they are invited to be a part of this professional development opportunity. They include some of the city’s most dynamic young performers, some of which have already begun a professional career in the arts. The phenomenal ensemble features Sara Cohen-Fournier, Tiernan Cornford, Charley Hausknost (Truth and Treason, Teesri Duniya), Ranee Henegan-Comeau, Jeremy Lacombe (Deathtrap, Lakeshore Players), and Sky Marley. They are accompanied by seasoned performers Jo Joffre (Sexy Dirty Bloody Scary, MainLine), Warona Setshwaelo (Humans, Tableau D’Hôte Theatre), and Vanessa Schmit-Craan (For Colored Girls Who Have Considered/When the Rainbow is Enuf, NuSpyce).
Payette is assisted by YouthWorks program director Tamara Brown who lends her vocal and choreography expertise to the mix. Johnnell Forrest (who is a part of YouthWorks’ mentorship program) designs, with Paul Brian Imperial stage managing.
Dates: Friday to Sunday, May 13th to May 15th, 2011 (Only 4 shows)
Time: Friday and Saturday Evening at 7:30pm
Saturday and Sunday Matinee at 2:00pm
Tickets: General Admission: $10.00
Group Rates Available
Venue: L’Espace 4001
4001 Berri, corner Duluth (Metro Sherbrooke)
Box Office: (514) 932-1104 ext. 226, email@example.com
About the Playwright:
Marika Schwandt is an actor, dancer, and playwright from Winnipeg but based in Toronto, proudly representing both West Broadway and Dundas West. She is co-artistic director of The Movement Project, a multi-arts company she co-founded in 2007; is a member of b.current theatre company’s raiz’n ensemble; and performs regularly with Les Coquettes Nouveau. Marika works as an artist/facilitator with Jumblies Theatre Company, and is associate director of Nightwood Theatre’s Busting Out girls’ program.