The Absent One
by Xavier Villaurrutia
a staged reading
Translator, Adaptor, & Dramaturge – Stefano Muneroni
Director – Simon Bloom
Stage Manager – John Raymond
Musician – Nicholas Diaz
Michelle Rios* as Fernanda
Doug Mertz* as Pedro
Michele Brown* as Neighbour
Francisco De Jesus Montaño as Man
*Appearing courtesy of Canadian Actors' Equity Association
The Absent One is a translation/adaptation of El Ausente by Mexican playwright Xavier Villaurrutia. The project weaves Villaurrutia's one act with some of his homoerotic poetry to invite a diachronical de-construction of queer identity in Mexico in 1930-1940s. As an adaptation, The Absent One aspires to create an intercultural dialogue with the source text and sheds light on an accomplished playwright whose work is rarely staged in Spanish and almost never translated into English. This project is inherently a work in progress (like all translations and adaptations) and it draws on bilingualism as a strategy to foreignize the target text and destabilize audience's cultural expectations.
Length: 35 minutes.
Tuesday, August 28th at 4:30pm
Wednesday, August 29th at 4:30 pm
Thursday, August 30th at 7:00pm
Admission Cost: FREE
Location: Timms Stage, Timms Centre for the Arts
Generously supported by: The President’s Fund for the Creative and Performing Arts
Stefano Muneroni is Assistant Professor of Intercultural Theatre at the University of Alberta. He is a theatre historian, dramaturge and translator who has taught in Italy, England, the U.S., and Canada. His areas of specialization are Postcolonial and Border Theory, and Religious theatre. Recent dramaturgical credits include Yerma, Angels in America, The American Clock, Tales of the Lost Formicans, The Mill on the Floss, The Toxic Bus Incident, and Old Times. Recent translations include Xavier Villaurrutia’s El ausente, Osvaldo Dragún’s Tres historias para ser contadas, and Brad Levinson’s A Ritual of Faith. He received grants to conduct research in Honduras, Mexico and Argentina, was awarded the Andrew Mellon Predoctoral Fellowship for 2007-2008, and is the recipient of a 2012 KIAS Cluster Grant to research the post 9/11 Mexican-American border. He has published academic articles on Latin American theatre, religion and drama, and translation.
Simon Bloom is a director, dramaturge, and a founding member and artistic co-director of the Toronto based theatre company Outside the March. Simon holds a B.A from the University of King's College in English and Theatre, and is currently completing the second year of his MFA in Theatre Directing at the U of A. Recently, he directed Hannah Moscovitch's East of Berlin at the university. Other directing credits include Sexual Perversity in Chicago (Edmonton Fringe), Ed's Story (National/International Touring), Splinters (Merritt Nomination, Plutonium Playhouse), Oh, the Humanity! (Canadian Premiere, Outside the March). In the fall, Simon will begin rehearsals on Hamlet, to be performed at the U of A.
John Raymond has stage managed “Medea”, “Spine”, “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolff?” and “One Flea Spare” for Studio Theatre. Recent credits include touring Catalyst Theatre’s “Nevermore” to the New Victory Theater in New York City and the Barbican Theatre in London, England and stage managing Catalyst Theatre’s “Hunchback” and “True Love Lies” at the Citadel Theatre. Other selected credits include “Frankenstein”, “The Blue Orphan” (Catalyst Theatre), “Shakespeare's Will”, “The Mystery of Irma Vep” (Citadel Theatre), “My Fair Lady” (Alberta Theatre Projects), “A Delicate Balance”, “Atlantis” (Canadian Stage), “Fire” (Theatre Calgary), “Mother of all the Behans”, “My Children! My Africa!”, “Balconville”, “A Damsel for A Gorilla” (Centaur Theatre), “The St. Nicholas Hotel, Wm. Donnelly Prop.”, “Sticks and Stones”, and “The Sun Raiser” (Banff Centre for the Arts). John leads the Department of Drama’s BFA Technical Theatre/Stage Management program. He was the Director of Production at the Citadel from 1998-2004.
Nicholas Diaz: Two years ago Nicholas graduated from MacEwan University's performance program. Since then he has studied drumming and dance in West Africa under a forty degree sun, played eclectic folk / rock guitar for friend's projects, busked some long nights on Whyte avenue, and played an absurd amount of polkas and waltz' province wide at many a wedding and zȃbava. He feels incredibly privileged to be a part of this project!
Michelle Rios: BROADWAY: Paul Simon’s The Capeman, The Sound of Music, Man of La Mancha. OFF-BROADWAY: 37 Arts: In the Heights; La MaMa, ETC: Missionaries; The Public: Dogeaters; Intar: Miriam’s Flowers, Unmerciful Good Fortune. REGIONAL: The Kennedy Center: Goya, Don Pasquale; Lincoln Center: Carmen; Weston Playhouse: Metamorphoses, The Light in the Piazza; InterAct Theater Company: The Beauty Inside; Alliance Theater: Sleepwalkers; Geva Theater Center; Berkshire Theater Festival; etc. Featured guest artist at both Spoleto Music Festivals in Charleston, SC & Spoleto, Italy. TV/FILM: Law & Order, Third Watch, Guiding Light, One Life to Live, Washington Heights, Dirt. http://www.mmrios.com
Doug Mertz recently appeared in Julius Caesar and The Tempest for Freewill Shakespeare Company this summer. Prior to that he played Peter Quince and Egeus in A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Citadel Theatre, where he also played Sheriff Deon Gilbeau in August, Osage County. Other Edmonton credits include The Unseen, Critics’ Choice winner at the 2011 Fringe Festival, Doubt here at the U of A and Pervert for Northern Light Theatre. Doug teaches part-time in the Drama Department here and is the Director of the Foote Theatre School and Young Companies at the Citadel Theatre.
Michele Brown graduated with a BFA in Acting from the University of Alberta in 1981 and has worked as an actor, musician, instructor, workshop facilitator and voice and acting coach since that time. As an actor she has been a member of many award-winning ensembles including November Theatre’s multi-award winning production of The Black Rider, and the Maggie Tree’s production of Beth Graham’s A Life in the Day. She has toured provincially, nationally and abroad and made over a dozen appearances as an actor, musician, co-creator and producer at the Edmonton Fringe Festival where she received three consecutive Sterling nominations and one Sterling award for Outstanding Performance by an Actress.
Francisco De Jesus Montaño (Paco) is a 5th year B.A. Drama Major at the University of Alberta. He was born and raised in Mexico City and therefore, the opportunity of working on an adaptation of a Mexican play peaked his interest. He is very proud of his heritage. He hopes that through his participation in this play he can broaden both his own perspective, and that of the audience, regarding Hispanic plays and playwrights. Paco is very appreciative of the opportunity to work with such a diverse and knowledgeable community. His experiences in this Festival will not soon be forgotten.