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Theatre Café

27 Apr – 8 May 2004
Arcola Theatre

Boundless Theatre joined forces with Caird Company to present some of the most extraordinary new plays from across Europe in a format which is a first for audiences in London.

Twelve carefully chosen plays, which reflect the diversity of writers from across the continent, were brought together in a completely new type of environment.

Dalston’s Arcola Theatre was transformed into a Theatre Café by designer Liz Cooke (designer of The Birds, National Theatre; The Magic Toyshop, Shared Experience; Spoonsface Steinberg, New Ambassadors amongst others) where the audience can relax in the surroundings, and yet feel completely involved in the staged readings of these exciting new pieces. The plays were directed John Caird (Caird Company) and John Retallack (Boundless Theatre).

The aim was to capture the moment when a performance is more than a dull reading, but hasn’t yet crystallized in what often becomes the automatism of a full production; a moment which is magic, exciting, risky and essentially theatrical.

The two-week programme of plays, each with a schools performance in the daytime, and an evening performance for the general public, was accompanied by a number of music performances, shows, discussions and interviews in collaboration with various Embassies and European Cultural Institutes.

The following plays were selected to be presented as part of Theatre Café:

‘I love this country’ by Peter Turrini from Austria / ‘The Letter’ by Aleksander Miljkovic from Croatia / ‘Encroachment’ by Iva Volanková from Czech Republic / ‘Mobile Horror’ by Juha Jokela from Finland / ‘The Heart of a Boxer’ by Lutz Hübner from Germany / ‘Mother Africa’ by Ad de Bont from Holland / ‘Truckstop’ by Lot Vekemans from Holland / ‘Mausoleum’ by Lajos Parti-Nagy from Hungary / ‘The Wild Children of the Blue Planet’ by Andri Snær Magnason from Iceland / ‘Rambo 7’ by Jon Atli Jónasson from Iceland / ‘The Dreamed Life of Nora Schahrazade’ by Mia Törnqvist / ‘Time of Darkness’ by Henning Mankell from Sweden