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I AM ROOT Ukrainian Canadian Theatre Show Comes to Adelaide Fringe 2023

Performances are February 15 - March 17.

I AM ROOT Ukrainian Canadian Theatre Show Comes to Adelaide Fringe 2023

Having won the weekly John Chataway Award for Innovative Work at Adelaide Fringe 2022 and fresh off a successful season with Sydney's Flying Nun by BrandX, 'i am root' - a deep and playful ritual performance piece that explores life, death, Ukrainian culture and Vegemite returns to the Adelaide Fringe.

Told from the perspective of a Ukrainian Canadian living in Australia, Olenka's one-woman show, 'i am root', utilises her mother tongue (Ukrainian), Akubras and Vegemite, song, dance, clown, folk traditions, recipes, storytelling, spoken word poetry to wonder into what it means to belong in the land down under.

As THE ONLY Adelaide Fringe show of 2023 with a focus on Ukrainian culture and identity at its core, 'i am root' stands alone by bringing the war in Ukraine right into the heart of Adelaide's CBD, offering audiences a unique perspective on what it means to be a member of the Ukrainian diaspora in the midst of a war.

Combining slicing spoken word poetry (2020 SA Slam Poetry State Finalist), non-verbal movement sequences, clowning (Vegemite ritual involved) and chopping beetroot on stage while feverishly discussing traditional recipes, Olenka breaks the mould for what a one-woman show can look like.

Directorial support by Adelaide's hometown clown Hew Parham, Choreography by Erin Fowler Movement, fresh new lighting and sound design by Will Spartalis, two successful seasons as a result of her Spotlight/Brand X residency (The Mill, Adelaide/BrandX, Sydney) and funding support through The Adelaide Fringe Artist Fund, i am root' has come out of a Second Stage development with a new look for Adelaide Fringe 2023.

Performer and creator Olenka Toroshenko is fresh off the heels of her latest performance with The Australian Dance Theatre and Tobiah Booth Remmers' experimental work, 'From the Other Side of Chaos' (Decc '22) and is preparing for another Fringe season. Toroshenko says, "It's been a journey of learning what I'm really made of to carry my culture and language in 'i am root' while my ancestral homeland, family and friends live amidst a war. I'm so grateful for the opportunity to share with Australia and pray that this work can connect me more deeply with the Ukrainian diaspora and those who support us".



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