Oval House Theatre
14 Nov - 1 Dec 2001
"A fresh, bold venture with a raw and thrilling aesthetic" - Time Out
Two dark tales from the Brazilian underground, VIVA MARIA! is two connected plays: TIA MARIA and MARIA ALVES by Mark O'Thomas.
The double-bill was presented at The Oval House Theatre in 2001 and toured the state of São Paulo - Brazil in 2002.
The two plays explored the myths Brazil holds about Europe and Europe holds about Brazil.
TIA MARIA explores the relationship Brazil has with Europe and through the decline of a soap opera actress. Maria longs for the quiet sophistication of Europe where true beauty and good manners are respected. Now past her prime and despite having endured many expensive operations on her face, she is faced with the prospect of meeting a violent death in her soap opera - a world she has come to believe is more real than the one she really lives in.
MARIA ALVES, in contrast, looks at Brazil as an exotic fantasy world, through the eyes of a deranged, violent young man who flees Manchester for São Paulo where, in the ‘kidnapping capital’, he himself becomes a kidnapper. Here, Martin Smith, a Latino-phile, searches out his own perfect ‘girl from Ipanema’ but the city is short of beaches and old spirits from the past just won’t leave him alone.
Cast and Creative Team
A double bill by Mark O’Thomas
Directed by André Pink
Set Designer Sandra Bretas
Costume Designer Lena Santana
Lighting Designer Clermont Pithan
Make-up Consultant Shirley Brody
Tia Maria cast
Maria Alves cast
“… Maybe I was just in a good mood or maybe I just enjoyed this production by Brazilian led Company, Dende Collective… Acutely observed, I liked the text and overall the direction was thought about, nicely synched with the lights and music. As Maria, Roberta Gonzalez’s timing was impeccable, able to deliver a great script for over an hour alone on stage.”
London Arts Report on ‘Tia Maria’