ENVISION – Sarasvàti Productions 2017/18 Season Launch

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Sarasvàti Productions invites you to envision a season of life-changing theatre that is inclusive, full of possibility and absolutely thrilling!

From FemFest 2017: Coming of Age to the 2018 International Women’s Week Cabaret of Monologues: I Am Unstoppable, to a formidable season of workshops geared to supporting youth and emerging artists: we are so excited to get started! Join us on August 4th at the Saddlery on Market (114 Market Ave)–a beautiful new spot in the Exchange District. This party is absolutely free. Show up by 7pm to enjoy the entire evening, or pop in throughout your First Friday adventures.

We’ll be celebrating FemFest’s 15th birthday by having some of our staff and artists share things they wrote as a child.

Let us entertain you with a Cabaret-style line-up featuring artists from our season to come. RobYn Slade presents a sampling of 50/50 theatre-improv fusion from the FemFest 2017 Cabaret. Reena Jolly performs a monologue devised from interviews with young newcomer women as part of New Beginnings development. Melanee Deschambeault and Erica Wilson perform a teaser  from FemFest featured show Two Indians and much, much more!

See what you envision at our awesome build-your-own kaleidoscope station courtesy of ArtsJunktion mb.

And as always we’ll have plenty of decadent cupcakes supplied generously by Cake-ology.

So join us on Friday August 4th as we envision an incredible season of Winnipeg theatre.
See more event details here.

 

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Summer Students make Strides at Sarasvàti

A world premiere, general auditions, FemFest brochure launch, outreach, a fundraising dinner, Timeraiser display, garage sale – how have we managed all of this in the last month? We’ve been very fortunate to welcome two hard-working summer students to team Sarasvàti thanks to Canada Summer Jobs. They’ve pitched in on so many important tasks and now they’re working on our 2017-18 Season Launch. Tamera and Larysa bring dedication and fresh ideas to the table and we are so pleased to hear from them in this week’s blog entry.

“I am proud to be at Sarasvàti Productions and to work in a community with a strong social conscience”, says Tamera, who began working as our Production Assistant in May.

TameraGrace-grown-FemFest17“So far my highlight of the summer was when I was backstage during Breaking Through. The cast and crew were all magnificent, as well as the story. It was very life-giving to support them through a smooth run of the show, as well as making sure everyone was comfortable and ready.

Aside from being able to work on their spring production, I have been spending most of my time in the office. This is my first time working in an office; it has been a good opportunity to improve my professional skills.”

Tamera is working on completing her double degree in Theatre and Business at the U of W.

“My original plan was to focus on acting, but I will be graduating with a focus in acting as well as production and business. For me, working with Sarasvàti has really clarified my desire to work in the not-for-profit sector. I want to continue finding opportunities to support those in the community.”

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Tamera Grace at TimeRaiser150 with Hope McIntyre looking for great new Sarasvàti volunteers.

“One of the great things about Sarasvati Productions is the opportunity it creates for discussion and understanding”, says Larysa, our Marketing & Community Outreach Assistant.

“Getting over fifty people to sit in one room, eat Ethiopian food, smell Ethiopian coffee beans, and listen to a difficult true story about becoming a refugee is no easy thing to organize. But, I think, this type of event is necessary for building healthy and strong communities. Like me, the people who listened to Saeed’s story may walk away feeling more empathy than they felt before. And that is no small achievement.”

IMG_4303Larysa is a Creative Communications student at Red River College and the director of Winnipeg Poetry Slam. She talks about her favourite experience while working with Sarasvàti—working at the Honouring Courage – Celebrating Diversity fundraiser dinner with human rights activist and speaker, Ali Saeed.

“We’re used to thinking of revenge as a bad thing. We think of threat, torture, and war. Ali Saeed calls this ‘red revenge’. But Saeed says there is one other type of revenge just as compelling: kindness, compassion and generosity. His word for this is ‘green revenge.’

Seven years Saeed spent imprisoned and sentenced to death in Somalia. Now he’s speaking to a roomful of people here at Gohe Restaurant for Sarasvàti Productions’ fundraiser. The entire room is quiet. The people I’m sitting with grimace and look downward.

Saeed talks about the cruelty he witnessed: forced abortion, lashings, hanging, cutting. Listening to Saeed, I am reminded of the safety I have here in Canada, a true luxury.

On his feet, Saeed wears loose Velcro sandals. He points to the burn marks on his heels, marks from the hardship he endured. Sandals are one of the few shoes he’ll wear because of the pain. Barefoot is preferable.

‘No one chooses to be a refugee,’ Saeed says.”

Larysa says working for Sarasvàti Productions has opened her mind to experiences outside of her own, which has been an invaluable experience.

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Larysa Musick at Honouring Courage – Celebrating Diversity Fundraiser Dinner for Sarasvàti Productions at Gohe Restaurant.

You can see some of their awesome ideas in action at the 2017-18 Season Launch, Friday August 4th 7pm at the Saddlery on Market (114 Market Ave).

Season Launch a Great Success!

We are thrilled to announce that our season launch on Tuesday morning was a great success! We had a fabulous turnout and were pleased to be joined by so many fans, supporters, actors, playwrights, and members of the media in launching our 2013-2014 season: Revelation and Revolution. Our Artistic Director, Hope McIntyre, was able to share our exciting upcoming productions, events, and projects that this season has in store. Recognition was also given to our season funders the Canada Council for the Arts, the Manitoba Arts Council, the Winnipeg Arts Council and the Winnipeg Foundation.

There is already a bunch of buzz surrounding the launch and our upcoming projects! Andrea Ratuski of CBC Scene wrote a great piece featuring our launch and our season. http://www.cbc.ca/manitoba/scene/theatre/2013/08/20/sarasvati/

Our Artistic Director, Hope McIntyre, and FemFest Associate Producer, Cairn Moore, also appeared on CTV Morning Live to talk about FemFest and our upcoming season. Check out the segment here: http://winnipeg.ctvnews.ca/video?clipId=987360

As it does every year, FemFest will be kicking off our season this year on September 14th. The crowd was treated to an excerpt from Harold and Vivian Entertain Guests by Jessy Ardern performed by David Fox and Brittany Thiessen, which had everyone in stitches. Marie Christian, coordinator with VOICES: Manitoba Youth In Care Network, spoke about the inspiring progress that our workshops with youth in care have yielded for our forum theatre piece, Giving Voice . Janet Taylor, the Chair of our Fundraising and Development Committee announced our third run of So You Think You Can Act , our fun fundraiser scheduled for February 19th. Our Cabaret of Monologues to celebrate International Women’s Week will run in various venues from March 3-9, 2014 under the title Rise Up!  Finally, the audience also got a teaser from our spring production of Fefu and Her Friends by Maria Irene Fornes with a reading performed by Melanie Dean and Nan Fewchuk.

Our guests also enjoyed our display of paper bag art and got to indulge in some delicious treats provided by Cake-ology and Starbucks!

If you weren’t able to come, you can find all the information about our upcoming season right here and by viewing the slideshow below!

Thank you to everyone who came and supported us!

Launching Identity

Sarasvàti Productions is excited to announce our upcoming Season Launch, Launching Identity, taking place next week!

We are inviting the media and community members for an exclusive peak at what Sarasvàti has to offer for the 2012-2013 season. The launch takes place on Tuesday, August 21, 2012 at 10am at the University of Winnipeg’s Asper Centre for Theatre and Film. Hear more about some of Sarasvàti’s unique and exhilerating programming, including:

FemFest 2012: Staging Identity (our 10th annual festival of plays by women for everyone).

– High school touring productions of Empty and Diss.

-The world premiere of Jail Baby, an original in-house production centering around women in the justice system.

For more information about these and other Sarasvàti events throughout the 2012-2013 season, check out www.sarasvati.ca or come on down to the launch! We cannot wait to see you there! Bring a friend!