Anatolia Speaks by Kenneth Brown
August 11 – 15, 17, 19 – 21 at Venue #39: La Cité Francophone
An interview with Candice Fiorentino.
Describe your show in five words.
Struggle, passion, survival, heart-wrenching, hopeful.
Okay, now that we’re intrigued… what’s the longer description?
Anatolia Speaks is a one-woman show featuring Anatolia, a new Canadian working at Superstore, recounting her past in Bosnia to her ESL class. She is hopeful and bright but questions about her past elicit a darker story. Anatolia Speaks is a story that celebrates the power of the human spirit.
You’ve been performing Anatolia Speaks for the past three years – what keeps you coming back to this show?
There are a few reasons I’ve been touring with Anatolia for three years now. One of which is to see this beautiful country! Touring the Fringe festivals is a wonderful way to see Canada. Hours and hours and hours are put into productions and after spending months or sometimes even years on developing a show, it goes up and is gone before you know it. I am so thankful for the response that Anatolia Speaks has received, allowing me to continue on and constantly find new moments in the show.
I saw your performance of Anatolia Speaks at the 2013 Fringe and found it very moving. What in particular do you think audiences connect to with this show? Also, for those who have seen a previous performance of the show, what can they gain by seeing it again?
Thank you for coming and for your kind words! Anatolia Speaks is a very simple show. I don’t think the audience realizes what they are in for. Anatolia has the ability to charm her classmates (the audience) in an awkward kind of way and before you know it, you are weeping in your chair.
If you’ve already seen the show, I would love to have you again! Stick around after and let me know what changed for you.
I had the opportunity to see my all-time favourite fringe show, Jake’s Gift, three times. By the third time I decided to watch with a different perspective, more of a technical one than emotional. Sure enough by the end of the show I was blubbering in my seat. That show is amazing.
You learned a Bosnian accent for this show. Can you give audiences a sense of what learning an accent involves and how you approached it for Anatolia Speaks?
I find the best way to create a character, accent or not, is to mimic people. Since I hadn’t actually met anyone from Bosnia when learning the show, I watched a documentary called Miss Sarajevo, a film showing just a taste of what happened in Bosnia during the war.
Anything else you want audiences to know about the show?
I am absolutely honoured to be able to do this show again and I am so thankful to have been able to work along side Ken Brown on this beautiful piece. We hope you are able to join us!
The 35th Edmonton International Fringe Theatre Festival is August 11 – 21. Get your tickets at tickets.fringetheatre.ca.