Country Chile

Discipline Theater

Recomended for +12

Duration 70 minutes

Language Spanish

Dates January 4 and 5, 21.00h / January 6, 20.00h

Warning The first 15 minutes involve walking around (exceptions can be made). Photos and videos allowed.

An indescribable moment of seclusion, wonder and emotion, corroborating the fact that Chileans already consider 'La negra Ester' a national treasure

El Mercurio

What traces does a play leave behind? Cuerpo pretérito uses the remains of the original production of La negra Ester - Andrés Pérez’ famous adaptation of Roberto Parra’s poem - to reconstruct and fictionalize her memory. Cuerpo pretérito is a museum-inspired theatrical experience that takes us on a journey through time and space, using film archives and photographs from this emblematic Chilean play. Contemporary actors embody the original ones from the production, which was premiered at the end of the eighties, with a new play emerging. This creation, called Sandra Barraza – a sequel in which love and AIDS merge in the life of a contemporary sex worker – aims to show who Ester would be today. In this piece, the theater becomes a museum. The audience walks around among the remains of props, costumes and sets; among brief visual and audiovisual records and between the choreography of the characters interpreted by this new cast. A new piece follows - a ‘theatrical sequel’ written by Bosco Cayo, telling the story of what the original characters’ futures might have been like.

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Direction

Samantha Manzur

(Chile)

Actress and researcher. She has worked as an actress in productions such as Yo te pido por todos los perros de la calle (2013), Skylight (2016), La soga (2016) and Ópera (2016). As far as research is concerned, she has specialized in the field of performance archives and documentary theater. Her first piece as a director and actress was the research project Cuerpo pretérito in the framework of the Theatrical Directors’ Program, organized by FITAM and the Goethe Institute.

Direction

Bosco Cayo

(Chile)

Actor, playwright, theatrical researcher and director, member of Compañía Limitada, Teatro Sin Dominio and Teatro La Malaclase. He has worked as a teacher at theater schools in different regions in the country. His project Negra, la enfermera del general was chosen by the Royal Court Theater in London for the New Plays from Chile season. Of all his plays, the following ones particularly stand out: Limítrofe, Leftraru, Silabario, La dama de los Andes, El Dylan and Plan Vivienda. He won the 2017 National Council for Culture and the Arts’ (CNCA) award for best literary piece in the theater genre.

Director Samantha Manzur Assistant director and playwright Bosco Cayo Producers Viviana Flores, Sebastián Muirhead Cast Armin Felmer, Valentina Mandic, Verónica Medel Guide Marcelo Lucero Sound designer Nicolás Aguirre Set, costume and lighting designer John Álvarez Artistic consultant Rodrigo Bazaes Audiovisual editing Pablo Greene, Julio Lobos Photography Charlotte El Moussead

  • Cuerpo pretérito is a project that creates a new play from the remnants of the original version of La negra Ester, one of the most important and widely seen productions in Chilean theater history. Inspired by Roberto Parra’s poetry, the play marked a milestone on the local scene, putting a value on all things Chilean through its music, poetry and esthetics.

  • This production brings together two young talents from the Chilean theater scene: Bosco Cayo (winner of the CNCA Literary Award for best theater play for La dama de Los Andes and of an honorable mention at the Municipality of Santiago’s Juegos Literarios in 2017 for El Dylan) and Samantha Manzur (winner of the award for best actress for Los cimientos at Sidarte’s EXIT Festival in 2012 and the award for best actress for Agnetha Kurtz Roca Method at the New Directors Festival at the University of Chile in 2015).

  • This play transports some of the characters from the original production to the present, imagining what they would be like today. There is also a dialogue with Andrés Pérez’ version through the use of verse, music and gestures and the issues it deals with: sex workers, love, AIDS, the historic marginalization of transsexuals and mime and bodies in contemporary theater.

  • The play is an experience that involves audience participation, with the public directly interacting with elements that are part of the production, as well as being able to take photos and videos.
  • La negra Ester. A Chilean theater classic premiered in 1988, this tells the love story between guitarist Roberto and Ester, a prostitute. Directed and adapted by the great Andrés Pérez, the play was inspired by the poetry of unforgettable Chilean folklorist, Roberto Parra and marked a milestone on the local scene because of its poetic nature and specific esthetics. Set in a brothel in the port of San Antonio, La negra Ester not only went down in history for its unprecedented theatrical success but also because it recognizes the value of working-class culture, bringing Chilean music and theater to new, younger audiences. Over its 30 year history, it’s been performed throughout Chile, as well as in countries such as the United States, Mexico, Argentina, Cuba, Canada and England.

«Young people who aren’t old enough to have seen the first version are deeply moved when they recognize gestures or melodies or touch old junk, all part of an ingrained imaginary world»

El Mercurio

«By bringing the play back (…) a window is opened, giving us the chance to ask ourselves what happens to archives and cultural memory»

El Desconcierto

«An undoubtedly creative, intelligent and well-resolved homage to Andrés Pérez. It also poses a possibly uncomfortable question: is it right to keep the archives of an emblematic play in storage?»

Marietta Santi, www.santi.cl

An indescribable moment of seclusion, wonder and emotion, corroborating the fact that Chileans already consider 'La negra Ester' a national treasure

El Mercurio

«Young people who aren’t old enough to have seen the first version are deeply moved when they recognize gestures or melodies or touch old junk, all part of an ingrained imaginary world»

El Mercurio

«By bringing the play back (…) a window is opened, giving us the chance to ask ourselves what happens to archives and cultural memory»

El Desconcierto

«An undoubtedly creative, intelligent and well-resolved homage to Andrés Pérez. It also poses a possibly uncomfortable question: is it right to keep the archives of an emblematic play in storage?»

Marietta Santi, www.santi.cl

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