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May 6-13: ODEON Theater in a NYC residency

de (7-5-2007)

The residency is designed as a second step of the ARTE Program of exchange between the Odeon Theater in Bucharest and the LARK Play Development Center in New York, following the participation of a delegation of seven artists in a productive ten-day translation residency at the Odeon Theatre in Bucharest in May 2006.

Dorina Lazar, esteemed actor and the Artistic Director at the Odeon Theater; Alina Moldovan, Director of Programs at the Odeon Theater; and Alina Nelega Cadariu, playwright and Artistic Director of the Ariel Theater in Targu-Mures have participated in the ARTE project from its outset. During their New York residency they will carry out a series of public readings, encounters with the NYC theater community, participate in panels and discussions, prepare and share work, in view of developing potential partnerships with playwrights and theaters for future creative collaboration. The residency will also include a public event hosted by the Lark Play Development Center on May 10.

Thursday, May 10, 7 pm
Alina Nelega: “Amelia Takes a Deep Breath (Amelia respira adinc)” – staged reading
How Plays Feel Different in Different Language – panel
This play follows one woman’s life-long encounters with cruelty and deprivation under communism and how she endures against all odds to survive. Against the backdrop of modern Romanian history, Amelia recounts the catalogue of her losses, from her body which she traded to the soldiers for scraps of food to her beloved dancer-brother who abandoned her for Paris. Throughout, she has held onto something she learned from her mother: to keep breathing. Translation developed by Alina Nelega in cooperation with playwright Kelly Stuart.
The event will also include an excerpt in Romanian performed by Dorina Lazăr who starred in the Romanian production of the play, and will be followed by a panel discussion with the artists.

LARK Play Development Center
939 Eighth Avenue, 2nd Floor, (bet 55th and 56th St.), New York, NY 10019
Tel. 212-246-2676
FREE ADMISSION. Reservations required at

“The overall goals of the ARTE project are to explore translation methods that work for the unique demands of theater, to share and explore methods for developing new plays and theater works and to raise public consciousness about the role of theater in international diplomacy and the exchange of ideas”, explains John Clinton Eisner, the producing-artistic director of the Lark Play Development Center.

The Romanian Cultural Institute in New York launched in 2006 its New Drama Support Program precisely in order to accompany the projects of exchange in the field of playwriting and translation between the Romania and the US that had been initiated in the past years. The ARTE program was one of them, and RCI New York is happy to take active part in its continuation in 2007, hoping as well that it grows into a fully fledged long term program of play development and translation.

Dorina Lazar is the General Manager of Odeon Theatre, Bucharest, since 2003. She is also a well-known and beloved Romanian actress, having acted on the Odeon stage since 1969, and at the Regional Theatre Bucharest, between 1961 and 1969. As an actress, Ms. Lazar received many awards among which: Best Actress Award from the Romanian Ministry of Culture (2003), Best Movie Actress at the International Film Festival “Henri Langlois”, in Tours (France, 1986), Best Movie Actress awarded by the Romanian Cinematographers Union (1979), The Bronze Lion at the International Theatre Festival in Arezzo (1982). She has also received the National Knight Order for Loyal Services, from the Romanian President in 2000, being one of the few women to be awarded with this high distinction. Apart from a much applauded and resourceful acting career, Dorina Lazar is successfully leading the Odeon Theatre, which was ranked by drama critics as best Romanian for several years. Under her leadership, the Odeon Theatre has not only produced successful performances but has also initiated and carried new projects from various theatrical perspectives, from socially to internationally related ones, including the ARTE Program.

Alina Nelega, based in the Transylvanian city of Tirgu Mures, is a playwright and fiction writer, journalist and theatre director. Her plays have been translated and published in French, English, German, Hungarian, Polish and Russian, and have been either performed or read in Romania and Hungary, as well as internationally, in London, Zurich, and New York. She participated in festivals and cultural exchanges in Europe (Ireland, Switzerland, Holland, Germany) and in the USA (New York Fringe Festival), and was a beneficiary of international residencies at the Royal Court Theatre and The Bush Theatre (London). She also runs playwrighting workshops, teaches and directs new writing. She writes and directs radio plays. She introduced to the Romanian audiences Eve Enslers’ „The Vagina Monologues”. She is a recipient of several awards, including the „Play of the Year 2000” Award (UNITER) and holds a Ph.D. in theatre studies from Bucharest University.

Alina Moldovan is Artistic Councilor at Odeon Theatre since 2000, and is the Romanian Coordinator for the ARTE project. Ms Moldovan has been an Artistic Councilor at Bulandra Theatre and is President of Contemporania Cultural Foundation. She has been actively involved in the initiation and organisation of a series of festival of contemporary performing arts (The Student’s Directing Festival she initiated in 1996, which became in 1997 the GATA! The Arts Graduation Days Festival; AltFEST – the Central and East European Alternative Theatre Festival, which she coordinated as artistic director since 1997; Stories for Children and Grown-ups Theatre Festival, in Alba Iulia, Romania, in 2006). She received in 2000 the Prize “12 for 2000 Generation” for her creativity and her professional skills, and the Excellence Diploma for the modern promotion of Odeon Theatre, from the International Critics Association, the Romanian Branch, in 2005.

Learn more about the May events in our April-May brochure, available online at or in hard copy format at RCI.

200 East 38th Street (at 3rd Avenue), New York, NY 10016
Tel: 212-687-0180 – Fax: 212-687-0181;


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