The Royal Court’s International Playwrights residency in Ukraine
Monday, 19 November 2012
Royal Court associate directors Simon Godwin and Caroline Steinbeis travelled to Kiev in November 2012 to work on four new contemporary and exciting plays from Ukraine and Georgia. The four young playwrights had been working with Elyse Dodgson, Head of the Royal Court’s International Department, and her team, since 2010.
The Royal Court was invited to participate in the new writing Festival in Kiev in which public readings were given of Mother War by Data Tavadze, The Party by Yevhen Markovsky, The President has Come to See You by Lasha Bugadze, And I don’t care how you’re doing anymore by Oksana Savchenko to a predominantly young audience in one of Kiev’s major theatres. The subject matter of the plays dealt with a range of issues relevant to life experienced by many people in the Ukraine and Georgia, something that is also lacking in the arts there.
There is an absence of contemporary theatre in Kiev so these readings were important events and it is hoped that they will inspire others in the Ukraine to create and engage in theatre. In turn, every Royal Court practitioner who has been involved has testified to the enormous impact the work in Ukraine and Georgia has had on them as artists.
Representatives of the Genesis Foundation and the British Council were also present to witness the work undertaken by the Royal Court and to meet with the playwrights and directors. The discussions were useful to both sides and the playwrights explained how much they have learnt from the Royal Court’s new writing project and how it has influenced not only their own careers but also their work with other writers, directors and actors.
Read more about the Genesis Foundation’s partnership with the Royal Court here.