World Premiere of Vladimir Shcherban's PRICE OF MONEY Set for September 16
In the wake of recession, the internationally renowned Belarus Free Theatre presents an urgent new exploration of how theatre has depicted money throughout the ages; from ancient Greece, through the Elizabethan golden-age to today's fractured economy.
Working in the genre of devised documentary theatre, Price of Money is based on Aristophanes' Plutus, the first political satire on money from ancient Athens, and Ben Johnson's work on the emerging ethics of capitalism, The Staple of News.
This is the start of an ongoing relationship between Belarus Free Theatre and the Albany, which will see the company working closely with local communities.
Belarus Free Theatre is one of the world's most celebrated contemporary theatre companies, astonishing audiences internationally and garnering fans in the likes of Tom Stoppard, Steven Spielberg, Jude Law, Kevin Spacey, Mick Jagger and Vaclav Havel.
The company was founded in 2005 under Europe's last surviving dictatorship; the company is one of the most outspoken critics of Belarus's repressive regime. Many company members have served time in prison, lost their jobs, gone into hiding or been exiled. Despite this, the company continues to develop award-winning work with the support of artists around the world.
The show will run from Tuesday, September 16th through Saturday, September 20th. Performances will be held at 7:30pm, with a Saturday matinee at 2:30pm. Tickets will be priced at £10 - £16. The show is recommended for ages 12+. To order tickets, visit thealbany.org.uk or call 020 8692 4446.
For more information, visit www.belarusfreetheatre.com.
Shcherban previously worked as a director at the Yanka Kupala National Academic Theatre in 1999 but was dismissed in 2006 for his cooperation with Belarus Free Theatre. Various performances by Shcherban in Belarus have been cancelled as a result of mass censorship and he has been detained for his professional activities.
Vladimir is an original partner of Belarus Free Theatre and joined the company shortly after it was founded in 2005, introducing actors who became the foundation for the existing permanent ensemble. In 2008, together with Nicolai Khalezin and Natalia Kaliada, he helped found Fortinbras, the only underground arts school in Belarus.
Productions directed for Belarus Free Theatre include: 4.48. Psychosis; We.Self-Indentification; We.Belliwood; Technique of Breezing in a Vacuum; Zone of Silence; Being Harold Pinter; A Flower for Pina Bausch; New York '79; Minsk, 2011: A Reply to Kathy Acker; King Lear; merry christmas, Ms Meadows; and Nearest and Dearest.
Founded by Artistic Directors Natalia Kaliada and Nicolai Khalezin in 2005 and joined shortly afterwards by BFT co-creator and theatre director Vladimir Shcherban, Belarus Free Theatre (BFT) is the only independent theatre company in Belarus. Of the 28 theatre companies in Belarus, 27 are controlled by the state. Only BFT stands for freedom of speech and expression. As a result, if you work for BFT you will never be employed by a state theatre again. BFT run an internationally famous ensemble and theatre school in Minsk. Their performances are frequently raided by the secret police and their audiences and actors are under constant threat of intimidation. After the 2010 presidential election Natalia was arrested and, together with Nicolai and Vladimir, they were forced to flee the country. They were granted political asylum in the UK.
With a fearless and distinctive voice, Belarus Free Theatre are renowned for challenging social and political issues in the work they create, which has been performed in five continents around the world. Past works include Trash Cuisine (Young Vic and Pleasance Edinburgh); King Lear (in Belarusian for Shakespeare's Globe); Minsk 2011: A Reply to Kathy Acker (Young Vic and worldwide tour); OBIE Award-winning and Drama Desk nominated Being Harold Pinter, Discover Love and Zone of Silence (Public Theatre and LaMama). Their Global Artistic Campaign has attracted the support of thousands of artists internationally including Tom Stoppard, Steven Spielberg, Jude Law, Kevin Spacey, Mick Jagger and Vaclav Havel.
The Albany is an arts centre based in the heart of Deptford with a history embedded in the local community, and driven by the cultural diversity and creative mix of South East London. The venue has a 500 capacity 'big top inspired' main house, as well as two smaller studio spaces, 26 resident companies housed in offices throughout the building, a café and a large garden.