Performed in Belarusian with English subtitles.
Thursday 02 August 2018, 6:00pm
Performance, Politics and Power, a free public forum at the Monash MPavilion with Belarus Free Theatre, hosted by Sarah Joseph, Director, Castan Centre for Human Rights Law at Monash University. Over open fires, mulled wine and food from St Ali they will open up ideas like: Can theatre affect the actions of governments and corporations? What are the responsibilities that theatre makers must take on if they believe in their power to enact change? And how can artists react when their actions are confronted by official power? Bring your rugs, gloves, coats and hats! Register for free here.
Monday 06 August 2018, 7:30pm
Premiere of Generation Jeans and a Q&A after the show with Belarus Free Theatre, hosted by Paul Grabowsky, Executive Director, Monash Academy of Performing Arts.
Tuesday 07 August 2018, 7:30pm
Second performance of Generation Jeans.
Wednesday 08 August 2018, 7:30pm
Third performance of Generation Jeans.
For some artists, creating theatre has turned them into enemies of the state. The small but mighty Belarus Free Theatre is one such example, an infamous Belarusian theatre founded by journalist Nicolai Khalezin and human rights activist Natalia Kaliada. An underground theatre founded in 2005, Belarus Free Theatre was established as an artistic form of resistance to Alexander Lukashenko’s authoritarian regime.
Generation Jeans is Khalezin’s candid solo performance about growing up in Soviet-era Belarus and selling vinyl rock albums and blue jeans on the black market while dodging KGB agents who routinely pounced on teenage bootleggers. Two decades after the Soviet Union’s collapse, Belarus remains Europe’s last dictatorship.
It’s a bittersweet and heartwarming coming-of-age story laced with dry humour but which darkens with Khalezin’s personal experience of police brutality and its widespread use towards anyone suspected of dissent. Fast forward to 2006 and denim is still a resonant symbol of freedom when an opposition protester famously hoisted his denim shirt on a city flagpole.
In a highly-anticipated visit to Australia, Belarus Free Theatre’s performance is in association with Malthouse Theatre.
“It’s something you need to experience and be effected by yourself.” – A Younger Theatre
Monash Student (ID required on collection) $15.00