romacen

ROMACEN – Vremea vrăjitoarei

ROMACEN

ROMACEN - The Age of The Witch marks the birth of a new artistic trend, Roma Futurism, which we hope will be taken over by many Roma artists in order to move to the next level, where we imagine a future in which we can stop the historical cycle of oppression against us. Roma Futurism claims the figure of the Roma witch, so stereotyped in the collective imaginary, and witchcraft becomes our artistic and political response to the social inequalities and injustices of the world we live in. (Mihaela Drăgan, 2019)

I - We are the witches. We have techno-magical powers. We reflect the present. We process the past. We develop the future. We are more and more powerful.

II - We know the past creates the present, and the hate against us and our people is from the past, from long ago. Confronting historical oppression we come with a proposal. Question your anthropocentrism. Meet the New Man, the hyperempathic man, the man with a feminist anti-racist conscience - a metaphor that radically reformulates the monstrous uber-mensch of the past century.

III - We are part of the Phenjalipen society and together we hold the secrets of the new technologies. We deconstruct and hackthe operating systems of patriarchy and Eurocentric racism. We reinvent the traumatic events of our Roma people's past in order to restore our dignity and alleviate our transgenerational traumas - we do ourselves justice.

IV- We believe that salvation comes from merging with technology. We are re-appropriating technology. We know how to use the algorithmic Tarot. Techno-clairvoyance. Cyber-curse. The Roma-car interface is no longer just a utopia for us. We are techno-witches and we are post-human.

V- We have an emancipatory vision. Faced with the apocalyptic present, we come up with an answer commensurate with our anger and liberating power: Romacen. We claim through techno-witchcraft a space where we can live our lives as we wish. If the neo-fascist present does not accommodate us, we find our own way. Welcome avatars. Welcome avatars.

 

TEAM

Concept and writing: Mihaela Drăgan 
With: Ioana Costea, Mihaela Drăgan, Nicoleta Ghiță, Fatma Mohamed, Zita Moldovan, Anca
Pitaru 
Virtual scenography: Cip Făcăeru
Digital interaction designer: Florin Dumitru
Costumes and poster: Gabriella Spriridon
Sound design: Flo Thamer 
Artistic direction: Tina Turnheim

SEX

SEXODROM

SEXODROM

Sexodrom deconstructs classic theater patterns and through a performative discrouse it questions
how social and political structures influence our private life. When the world is a stage where
the rhetoric of uncertainity and fear models our outlook on life more and more, we come
with a counter-offer: that of celebrating our sensuality and place in the queer community
and Roma minority.

Consider Sexodrom a sedition.
Of bringing personal stories and intimate accounts into the public space. Of loudly telling your story when nobody wants to hear it.

Think of Sexodrom as a political declaration of love.
Of telling one another that our lives and our sexuality can be a pleasant journey, and especially a safe one, whoever we are, regardless of our age, gender, sexual orientation, whatever our social or professional environment.

Take Sexodrom as an invitation to a grand unmasking.
What are the Romanian #metoo stories that you never hear, that you never read about online?
It is high time they were told bravely and frankly.

SEXODROM is a group theatrical production made following the dramatic writing workshop “Politics in private”, which aims to explore together with young Roma artists still taboo subjects in the Romanian public space. The show "Sexodrom" also contributes, together with the other productions of the theater company Giuvlipen, to the development of a Roma Theater in Romania, by increasing the repertoire, increasing the visibility of theatrical productions by Roma actors and connecting Roma theater to the general public, by addressing relevant topics for the Roma community and Romanian society in general. The show "Sexodrom" premiered on May 7 and 8, 2019 at the National Dance Center of Bucharest.

 

TEAM

Writing: Mihaela Drăgan, Antonella Lerca Duda, Nicoleta Ghiță, Zita Moldovan, Bety Pisică, Oana
Rusu, Raj Alexandru Udrea
Concept and directing: Bogdan Georgescu
Scenography: Irina Gâdiuţă
Music: Alex Bălă
Choreography: Paul Dunker

kalitr

KALI TRAS

KALI TRAŠ / BLACK FEAR

Kali Traš is a dramatisation of Roma author, Valerică Stănescu’s Cu Moartea-n Ochi (Facing Death) book. Perhaps the most brutal, significant and widely overlooked chapter in Roma history, Kali Traš tells the gut-wrenching story of the Roma Holocaust under the political regime of Antonescu. We follow a travelling theatre company of Roma performers in the 1940s as their lives are impacted by the immediate threat of deportation to Transnistria.

Kali Traš is part of Roma Theatre is not Nomad: Memories of Transnistria, a project made possible with the support of the National Cultural Fund Administration. Co-creating Kali Traš with another minority state theatre, the State Jewish Theatre, is a great opportunity to further the claim for development of a State Roma Theatre in Romania. Our long-term goals are to expand the contemporary Roma theatre repertoire, increase the visibility of Roma cultural output, and connect Roma theatre to mainstream audiences.

“Kali Traš” (the romani language, Black Fear) is one of the names given by Roma people to the Holocaust, a subject almost forgotten in our collective consciousness. Romania took too much time admitting to the Roma genocide, therefore there are so few representations of deportation of Roma to Transnistria in art, media, history books or public discourse.

For ”Kali Traš” we had to use all our artistic resources, our passion, grief and burden, in order to reproduce such a dark history. We aim higher than simple documentation of history. We aim for a performance which will linger in the hearts and minds of the audience, long after they leave the theatre. Albeit painful, we unearth the history in pursuit of answers to modern injustice.”(Mihaela Drăgan)

 

TEAM

With: Zita Moldovan, Mihaela Drăgan, Claudiu Dumitru, Ninel Petrache, Mircea Dragoman
Scenography: Iulia Toma
Choreography: Paul Dunca, Ana Costea
Playwrite: Mihaela Drăgan 
Written and directed by: Mihai Lukács

corp

URBAN BODY

URBAN BODY

For some, ”body” equals ”identity”, and for others the body is a vehicle. For some, the body is what makes us the same, for others it is precisely what makes us different. The relation between a woman and her body is still rarely discussed, yet, female body representations are everywhere around us. The subject gets more and more taboo as we travel lower down the female anatomical body, where centuries of practice of silence have transformed it into a cultural minefield.

Urban Body fictionalizes the stories of four Roma women and investigates the connection between them and their own bodies, through a personal lens and in a social context: the body as an instrument of production, the body as property, the body as a cradle of maternity; the healthy body, the sick body, the shameful body, the physical body as the mirror of one’s social life and as the only personal possession. We venture into the fringes of society, exploring the gray areas of societal morality, and we open for debate the controversial subject of sexual and reproductive rights, in a musical, courageous, provocative show about sex, survival and identity in 21st century Romania.

 

TEAM

With: Mihaela Drăgan, Zita Moldovan
Music: Ardeja Fraga
Written and directeb by: Catinca Drăgănescu
Choreography: Paula Dunker

 

MEDIA

Dilema Veche – Corpuri care nu
Observator Cultural – Negreșitul corp urban al femeilor

sz

SZOMNA GRANCSA

WHO KILLED

SZOMNA GRANCSA ?

"Who killed Szomna Grancsa?" is based on the true story of a Roma girl who was found dead at her home, in a village in Romania, in 2007. Her death let us with a lot of question marks and premium material for the media of the time. The play is a challenge to the simple and sensationalist version of Szomna’s story, covered in the Romanian media, that said a young woman, from a traditional Roma community, died because her parents haven’t allowed her to continue her high school studies.

The theme of the play is more complex and the reasons behind her tragedy are more complicated than they appear. In the play nobody seems to understand what happened, but everyone has a point of view. As valid as they all appear – through characters voices – the opinions we hear about Szomna’s suicide act, can’t actually explain her last behavior. Everyone plays a plea of not guilty, but one can feel the transgressive side of their narrative. Something is missing and nobody can figure out what. Nevertheless, the play does not intend to give answers. Yet it deepens the mystery and leaves the spectators with further questions to deal with, as it explores more invisible and undiscussed aspects of Szomna’s short life: anti-Roma racism in Romanian educational system, women’s oppression in Romanian society at large and also in traditional Roma communities, poverty or suicide and depression in teenagers.

 

TEAM

With: Liana Ceterchi, Mihaela Drăgan, Zita Moldovan
Live music: Elena Albu
Scenography: Elena Dobîndă
Directed by: Mihai Lukács

cul

CULTUL PERSONALITATII

THE CULT OF PERSONALITY

The Cult of Personality is a dark comedy theatre show about the history of the Romanian Communist Party during the 1950s. Set in a modern political- tabloid TV show, our fateful trio (Nicolae Ceaușescu, Gheorghe Gheorghiu Dej and Ana Pauker) bicker and belittle each other, reminisce on the ‘good old days’ and revel in their nostalgia. The show premiered in September 2018 in Bucharest at Macaz Theater Co-op.

In pursuit of a historical period lacking accurate documentation, both in national media and curriculum. More emotional speculation than an objective truth, the show wants to generate a larger conversation about power relations, the cult of personality, gender relations within party structures, anti-semitism and cosmopolitism.

“Recent history has always been a hard topic: can we have a less passionate view on the historical times that we already think we know? When history is officially made by the masses, how can the famous personalities of the time effect the course of historical process?” (Mihai Lukács)

 

TEAM

With: Oana Rusu, Andrei Șerban, Raj Alexandru Udrea
Directed by: Mihai Lukács
Scenography: Iulia Toma
Sound design: Rek Abu
Video art: Claudiu Cobilanschi
Music composer: Nicky Stevens

gad

GADJO DILDO

GADJO DILDO

Three Roma women are working for Gypsy Experience, an exotic cabaret show. Each character has a special story:

Vanessa, a famous singer, admits publicly that she is a Roma, but her career is suffering. Stela, a former street fighter, after a big failure in love, tries to have a new relationship with a woman, which is not very easy because nobody thinks that a Roma woman can be lesbian. Sidonia tries since she was a child to forget that she is Roma but she is put in a situation when she falls in love with a Roma man.

The show takes an unexpected turn, when clichés about Roma women are revealed, analyzed and ridiculed.

 

TEAM

With: Mihaela Drăgan, Raisa Mihai, Zita Moldovan, Paul Dunca
Directed by: Mihai Lukács
Music: Ion din Dorobanţi
Choreography: Paula Dunker

albp

ALBASTRU PORTOCALIU

blue / orange

For Gilda oranges are blue. She was in a psychiatric ward for a month, but now she wants to leave. A young doctor, convinced that she requires further medical care, is keeping her in the hospital against her will. The head of the psychiatric ward, on the other hand, believes that people like Gilda can't be helped and that the taxpayer's money is being wasted by treating people like her.

In this clash of etnicity, mental health and medical ethics, Gilda is cought in the middle.

The performance’s scenario stepped us into a difficult world of the double experience of a young Roma woman, as a patient of the psychiatric ward but we also find out about the isolation that she feels outside the hospital's institutionalized framework. The fragile balance of her mental health, the transformation into an object of the dispute between the two doctors, the turbulence created by the self-pride of the two, the standard methodology applied for discharge and complaints or the immutable hierarchy in the Romanian medical system make the "blue/orange" performance an important voice of visibility through artistic means of the hidden or discriminatory or taboo experiences.

“It is a mirror show. We have the feeling that we are whole only when we see the reflection in the others. I’m Romanian because I know that I’m not roma, I’m heterosexual because I know that I’m not gay, I’m orthodox because I know that I’m not muslim, I’m rich because I’m not poor but in this look at the other there is much desire and a surplus of real, a hole made even in the center of our symbolic system.” (Mihai Lukács)

 

TEAM

With: Zita Moldovan, Claudiu Dumitru și Andrei Șerban/ Iulian Gliță.
Live music: Poetrip
Scenography: Laurențiu Ridichie
Directed by: Mihai Lukács

 

MEDIA

Dilema Veche – Gilda
Scena 9 – Pământul e albastru ca o portocală

del

DEL DUMA

DEL DUMA

(TELL THEM ABOUT ME)

The stories of four Roma women combine with traditional Romani music in a documentary theater performance.

The four women say out loud: ”Del Duma ( Tell Them About Me!)” About the truth of teenage marriage, about what it means to belong to a traditional community and about what happens when you no longer feel you belong there.

About the so-called "exoticism"of the Roma women,about stereotypes which remind us that acceptance and diversity are a still a long way from becoming reality.

In  Del Duma  we talked about untimely marriage, this show was meant as a documentary with the stories of girls/women from traditional Roma communities who were trying to find an alternative for this social pressure that still exists in many Roma families.

The show starts off with my story because I felt it was not right to let the other women expose their stories without putting myself in a vulnerable position first, without letting my personal story be publicly judged alongside the others.

I became close to them by admitting my vulnerability, fully aware of the fragility of the area I was heading in. Of course, there was a lot of self-irony, an approach I often chose. (Mihaela Drăgan)

 

TEAM

With / Written by : Mihaela Drăgan
Live music: Radu Captari
Directed by: Liana Ceterchi

lahas

LA HĂRNEALĂ

RAZZING

Lawyers, real estate mafia, executors, police, mayors, secretaries, affective speculators, opportunist artists – they are all pressing on the houses from the neighborhood of highly real- estate value Rahova Uranus, wherefrom hundreds of people have been evicted and others are waiting for their turn. The evicted women and their children, together with Mihaela Drăgan, are dissecting step by step the process of losing their homes, which is at the same time a profitable business of destroying a community.

Rahova-Uranus area is visited by real-estate agents because of its central location. Yet the eviction phenomenon is present in every neighborhood and in all the sectors of Bucharest, but also all over Romania.

The evicted, trapped in the process of “cleaning” the city centers of poor and Roma, alongside the activists, stay in solidarity and protest permanently for their voices to be heard by those who have the duty to protect the housing right of each citizen of the country, no matter what their social status or ethnicity are.

The performance is an independent play produced by La Bomba Studios, Rahova-Uranus, with the support of  tranzit.ro/București .

 

TEAM

Play by: Mihaela Drăgan and Mihai Lukacs 
With: Mihaela Drăgan, Gabriela Dumitru, Marian Dumitru, Claudiu Eremia, Cristina Eremia,
Alexandrina Fieraru, Andreea Fieraru, Cornelia Ioniță, Marian Ioniță, Mihai Lukács