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José Pliya: Cannibals (Benin, France, Guadeloupe)

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Dec 6, 2007
Dec 6, 2007
Segal Theater

Join us for an evening with French playwright José Pliya. Excerpts from his play Cannibals will be read by three actresses, and directed by Robert Lyons, artistic director of the Ohio Theater. A discussion with Ellen Lampert-Gréaux and Philippa Wehle will follow the reading. José Pliya will speak about his work, highlighting his work as the director of Artchipel, the National Theater of Guadeloupe. Introdution by Dr. Philippa Wehle, Professor Emeritus of Contemporary Drama and French, Purchase College, SUNY.

José Pliya
Photo courtesy of the Artist

Cannibals, by José Pliya (translated by Ellen Lampert-Gréaux and Philippa Wehle) takes the form of a conversation among three women who meet in a park. They have never met before. Gathered around a blue baby carriage, they talk about the loss of their children in circumstances real and imagined. The carriage itself is empty. Whose carriage is this? Whose child? Who are these women, and why have they come together?

José Pliya was born in Cotonou, Benin, West Africa in 1966. Play-wright, actor, director, and teacher, he holds a doctorate in Modern Literature from the University of Lille, where he also taught. Artistic director of Écritures Théâtrales Contemporaines en Caraibe (Contemporary Caribbean Playwriting) and former director of the Alliances Françaises of Dominica and Cameroon, Pliya is the author of numerous plays, several of them published by L’Avant- Scène Théâtre, in its Quatre Vents collection. His plays have been produced in major French theaters such as La Comédie Française (Les Effracteurs, 2004); Cannibales (Théâtre National de Chaillot, 2004), Une Famille Ordinaire at the Théâtre de l’oeuvre, in 2004 and Le Complexe de Thénardier at the Théâtre du Rond-Point Champs Elysées, in 2002 and again, at the Lucernaire Theater in 2005. In 2005, José Pliya was appointed artistic director of l’Artchipel, the National Theatre of Guadeloupe, French West Indies.

Soho Think Tank strengthens, nurtures, and promotes an aesthetically and culturally diverse community of independent theatre artists and theatre companies by producing, presenting, and programming new work at the Ohio Theater, in Soho.

6:30 p.m., Thursday, December 6, 2007 Martin E. Segal Theatre. Free!