Unique residency made possible by the Cleveland Foundation’s Creative Fusion International Artist in Residence Program
Cleveland State University’s Dramatic Arts Program, in collaboration with the Cleveland Foundation and Cleveland Public Theatre, will present the world premiere performance of Codename: EXILE, April 22-May 2 at the CSU Factory Theater.
This “devised theater” experience is directed by internationally renowned Turkish playwright and director Özen Yula, in residence for nine months at CSU and CPT. Codename: EXILE employs a mix of developed text, powerful imagery and stylized movement to share the stories of people who throughout history have been exiled from their homelands, face torture and discrimination in their struggles for survival, and, quite simply, try hard to find a place in the world.
Upon Yula’s arrival in January, CSU drama students were introduced to a form of theatre they had never before explored. The first week, they were instructed to bring in untraditional text -- family stories, bits of children’s books, songs, poems -- anything that meant something to them. Throughout the semester, these pieces became the foundation for building Codename: EXILE.
Özen’s work at CSU is part of his long-term residency in Cleveland, supported by the Cleveland Foundation’s Creative Fusion International Artist in Residence Program. He has already helped a group of Cleveland Metropolitan School District teens create their own play, and will work with CPT this spring and summer to write and produce another world premiere for CPT’s fall season.
Özen Yula is one of the world’s most daring, avant-garde playwrights and directors. His collected plays have been published in 5 volumes and translated into more than 10 languages, including Bosnian and Arabic. His work is characterized as dark, comical, visually daring and at the forefront of controversial issues of social justice and human rights facing our global society.
Codename: EXILE performances are Thursday- Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. at the CSU Factory Theatre, 1833 East 24th Street between Chester and Payne avenues. Parking in lot S1 is free.
Tickets are $10 general admission and $5 for students, seniors and CSU faculty/staff. For ticket reservations, please visit http://csu.ticketleap.com or call the box office at 216.687.2109. Tickets may also be purchased one-half hour before show time.
Creative Fusion is dedicated to fostering creative and cultural diversity and bringing new global perspectives to our communities. Creative Fusion is unique in the U.S. because the program is multi-year, bringing artists of diverse cultures to the community for extended periods of time. Artists are embedded within existing cultural institutions to facilitate the exchange of ideas and experiences across sectors, populations, ideologies and modes of creative expression.
Yula’s joint residency is engaging students, the theater community and the public in a dialogue about global cultural issues and the role of the artist in furthering that dialogue.
For more information on Creative Fusion, please contact Kathleen Cerveny at the Cleveland Foundation at 216.615.7146, Raymond Bobgan at Cleveland Public Theatre at 216.631.2727 or University Marketing at CSU at 216.523.2257.
Founded in 1964, Cleveland State University is a public research institution that provides a dynamic setting for engaged learning. With an enrollment of more than 16,000 students, 8 colleges and more than 250 academic programs, CSU provides a hands-on learning environment that connects students, ideas and real-world experience.
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