Best known for their annual Turkish drama season in January, Arcola Theatre’s Ala-Turka group are adding a summer session this year. Starting on Tuesday, there’s a week’s worth of Turkish theatre, music and culture, from staged readings of new plays and classics of the Turkish Stage, to theatre workshops, bellydancing and a closing party.
Among the highlights are readings from TENEKE by Yasar Kemal and BENERCI by Nazim Hikmet, along with excerpts from three other literary giants of Turkey in the Classic Literature night on 14 July. Before each reading, the audience will be told a little about each author and their play or novel’s synopsis.
The following day will feature a series of new plays from the group, including CROYDON by Ece Ozdemiroglu about the little lies we tell people when we translate from English to Turkish and back. Also TRAVEL by Serpil Delice that plays out scenes from a travel agency, and monologues from FIRST COMERS (ILK GELENLER) about the things Turkish immigrants brought to the UK when they first arrived, which they cannot bring themselves to throw away. This session includes a Q&A with the audience, who can recount their own related stories.
The full Ala-Turka Yaz programme:
Tuesday 14th July 8pm: Classics of Turkish Literature. Join Ala-Turka as they present readings from classic plays by Nazim Hikmet, Yasar Kemal and more….
Wednesday 15th July 8pm: Ala-Turka Scratch Night. The company present scratch performances of new short plays. Prepare yourself to explore life, love, identity, truth and lies in two languages.
Thursday 16th July 8pm: Selected Highlights from Classics of Turkish Literature and new short plays by Ala-Turka members.
Friday 17th July 8pm: Underbelly: The Evolution of Belly Dancing and PAKAW!
Saturday 18th July Day (various times): Children’s Play, Physical Theatre, Writing and Body Percussion. Plus an exciting workshop line up including: The Play Lab Company, Celal Orhan, Ece Ozdemiroglu and The School of Laughter.
8pm: Underbelly: The Evolution of Belly Dancing and the Ala-Turka Yaz! Closing Party with Tuğba Özcivan.
|Feel the summer vibes with Pakaw! on Friday night|
The bulk of the programme is in Turkish, but there are some bi-lingual and English-language events too. Check online for full details. Event running times and prices vary, and seating for events taking place in Studio 2 is unallocated.
Arcola’s Nick Connaughton said: “Arcola Theatre is proud to continue to support the development of our Ala-Turka theatre company. Ala-Turka Yaz! is an important development as the group curate and produce a week-long celebration of culture, theatre, history and music, combining the old with the new – a perfect way to bring in the summer holidays.”
The multi award-winning Arcola Theatre was founded in 2000 by Artistic Director Mehmet Ergen and Executive Producer Leyla Nazli. Housed in a converted paint factory in Hackney, the popular theatre is one of the most respected arts venues in the UK, renowned for its artistic excellence and innovative programming.
Ala-Turka is the Arcola Turkish & Kurdish Theatre Group, which was born in 2001 when Mehmet Ergen led a series of workshops for young Turkish speakers aged 19-25, which developed into the first production, A View from the Bridge by Arthur Miller, which played in Turkish for one week. Since this time, Ala-Turka have continued to present classic texts and new theatre in Turkish with English surtitles.
Event: Ala-Turka Yaz!
Start/end dates: Tue 14 - Sat 18 July
Address: Arcola Theatre, 24 Ashwin Street, Dalston, London E8 3DL
Info & tickets: arcolatheatre.com/whats-on/alaturkayaz / Box Office: 020 7503 1646