I’ve been writing fiction since I was 8 and plays since I was a teenager, so stories have always been part of my life. I believe that the human need to tell and listen to stories will never disappear. That’s why I believe that a play must first and foremost tell a story. And because all the stories have already been told, as a playwright I am always in search for new structures and new ways of telling stories. The theater text is a house, and I am its architect. For me, the architecture of a text is very important and I try to build my plays like musical compositions in which each character has his own distinct voice.
Elise Wilk, born in Brașov and growing up bilingual (German and Romanian) is one of the most performed playwrights of the young generation in Romania. She studied journalism in Cluj-Napoca, creative writing in Brașov and playwriting in Târgu Mureș. In 2020, she defended her PhD thesis at the University of Arts in Târgu Mureș, on the topic of Youth Theatre in Romania. Currently she is teaching Playwriting at the University of Arts in Târgu Mureș. In 2008 she received the Romanian dramAcum award for her first play It happened on a Thursday. Since then, her plays have been staged both in Romania and abroad and have so far been translated into 13 languages. In Romania, her plays won the Irish Embassy Award for emerging playwrights (The Green Cat, 2013), the Romanian Drama Prize (Paper Airplanes, 2015), Best monologue play (Crocodile, 2017). She took part in international writing programs such as the Forum of the Young Authors at the Wiesbaden Theater Biennale (2014), Hot Ink at the Lark in New York (2015) and Fabulamundi.Playwriting Europe (2013-2020). Her plays were also adapted for the radio. In 2017 and 2018, the play Explosive, a production of Radio Romania, won important prizes on three continents: Winner of the Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union Award 2017, Grand Prix Marulic (2018) and Gold Medal at the New York Festivals (2018). Other awards include: Trendsetter of the Year 2014 (Forbes Magazine Romania), 100 people for the Romania of tomorrow (2018, Decât o Revistă), German Diaspora Personality of the Year (2019,International Media Aid), Premio Carlo Annoni Italy (2021), Aurora Prize for Playwriting (2022, Poland).
Three boys, three girls, the first day of school in tenth grade. Their parents are working in Italy or Spain, the teenagers are raised by relatives. Miki, the new one, gets a ball in the back- this is the harmless prelude of a series of humiliations and blackmailing by his classmates Bobo and Alex. Miki tries to seek refuge in his own imagination and in his friendship with Lena. Alex, the star of the girls, breaks up with Lena. From then on, he would rather kiss her best friend Laura. Growing up is not very easy: Andra thinks she’s too fat and decides not to leave the house anymore, Bobo is coping with the illness of his grandmother, Lena is abused by her sister’s boyfriend. On the last day of school, Miki enters the classroom all dressed in black with his uncle’s gun in the backpack. “Paper Planes” is a short and painful excursion into the secret universe of adolescence: a jungle populated by burning planes, phosphorescent giraffes, violence, love and loneliness. The play tackles one of the least comfortable topics of today’s Romania: the stolen childhood of those forced to come of age in the absence of their parents, gone to seek work abroad. Last, but not least, “Paper planes” is a poetic, but uncompromising insight into the way in which a society so sick it keeps parents away from their children, is prone to destroy innocence and beautiful childhood dreams.
Characters: 6 (3w, 3 m)
Romanian Drama Prize, 2015
Translations available in: English, French, German, Hungarian, Greek.
David is 11. His father was chosen to be an astronaut and left earth in a wooden box some people buried in the ground. Some day he will be back. But why is David’s mother dating the shady man with the moustache? Why is David not allowed to have painted fingernails and to wear sparkling dresses? Why can’t he be a girl, like Simo, his best friend? And then there is Felix, a boy from school. Every time he appears, David has a strange feeling in the stomach. And there is also a small crocodile inside of David, that bites him in the heart every time he is sad. David experiences gender dysphoria- the belief that there is a mismatch between his biological sex and his gender identity. According to the 2015 Eurobarometer on discrimination, Romanians have the lowest rate of approval for sexual minorities in the whole of the EU. In the same year, the Coalition for the Family submitted its initiative to constitutionally redefine the family as a “consensual marriage between a man and a woman”. Discrimination and bullying remain widespread in Romania.
Characters: 1 (m)
National Monodrama Prize, 2017.
Four stories that all happen in the same hotel room, in four different nights. A middle-aged man uses the services of a professional male stripper, hoping to regain his wife. Two newly weds face a delicate problem during their wedding night. The assistant manager of a multinational company and her boss get together in the same room, by strange circumstances. A depressive chambermaid and a tabloid photographer accidentaly met on New Year’s Eve . Four stories about ordinary people living unusual moments . Four atypical love stories . Four stories about loneliness.
The green cat
The green cat is the story of six teenagers and of a Saturday night that will change their lives forever. Written in „mockumentary” style, the play tells the story of a murder by interviewing all those that are involved. It talks about adolescence, an age when the fragility of emotional balance can easily generate tragedies. It’s about love, about friendship, but first of all it’s about the power of imagination, that helps us escape the grey world we are living in.
6 characters (2 m, 4 w)