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16 Oct 2016 - 31 Oct 2016

Petr Kolečko: Poker Face

2011. Poker player Jana is living in a luxury apartment in Prague, struggling to get on with her idealistic daughter Pavlína. However, in 1989, Jana experienced the Velvet Revolution with all the passion of youth, mingling with activists and ending up in a late night raucous meeting with leading dissidents. What has turned an idealist into a cynic? How crucial was the death of her father, a former worker in the Nigerian oil wells? Could Pavlína be Havel’s child? Alternating drama with dark comedy Poker Face portrays three generations against the backdrop of radical change in Central Europe. UK premiere of a thought provoking play by Petr Kolečko in new English translation by Eva Daničková.


16th, 17th, 23rd, 24th, 30th, 31st October at 7PM
Kings Head Theatre, 115 Upper Street, London, N1 1QN

 first night only (16th October) £10. All other nights £18, £15 (concs)
Online booking, box office: 0207 226 8561

 SPECIAL OFFER: use code CENTRE when booking and get the ticket for £10!

Poker Face, by Petr Kolečko, translated by Eva Daníčková
Directed by Becka McFadde
Associate Director: Cassandra Fumi
Cast: Daiva Dominynka, Mark Ota & Lara Parmiani with special guest Arnošt Goldflam

Petr Kolečko (*1984) is one of the most successful Czech playwrights of his generation. He began writing for theatre while studying at Prague’s Academy of Performing Arts and by the age of 22 he had a play, Britney Goes to Heaven produced at the Petr Bezruč Theatre in Ostrava. In 2008, he took part in the Royal Court’s international playwrights’ residence. He had a successful seven-year stint as artistic director of Prague’s A Studio Rubín (2008 – 2015), which he devoted entirely to contemporary Czech drama and comedy. With director Daniel Špinar, he created a much-acclaimed cycle of plays looking at strong mythical heroines (Salome, Medea and Maryša). His plays have been translated into English, French, Spanish, German, Romanian, Polish and Slovak and presented in a number of European countries.  Icing (Zakázané uvolnění) and Fifty (Padesátka) have been adapted as feature films. He also writes for television, including the hit sitcom The Fourth Star (Čtvrtáhvězda). 

Poker Face was written in 2012 and first presented at the GUnaGU theatre in Bratislava, Slovakia, as part of the Generation Icons international project produced by the LetíTheatre in Prague. This is the first time it's been fully produced in English as part of LegalAliens' "translating Europe" series.

is dedicated to original translations of contemporary European plays. Its goal is producing innovative, thought provoking theatre exploring issues affecting modern societies, with a special interest in “otherness” in all its forms: gender, race, language.  LegalAliens' translations aren't a literary endeavour carried out by one person in isolation but a collaborative, physical process taking place in the rehearsal room, with actors, director and translator working together to recreate the specifics of the original. Previous work includes Neither Here Nor There by Maggie Rose, The Return by Sergio Pierattini, and an adaptation of The Old and the Young by Pirandello. www.legalalienstheatre.com

Eva Daníčková is a dramaturg, librettist and translator. Eva is passionate about promoting Czech theatre in the UK and in 2010 she founded Boii Theatre, producing plays in translation in venues across London. She wrote and produced two operas for the Tête à Tête Opera Festival, reads Czech play scripts for the National Theatre and the Royal Court International Department and worked with the actors of the West End production of ‘Once’ the musical.

Becka McFadden’s directing credits for LegalAliens include The Return, The Generational Icons Project (in collaboration with Divadlo Letí) and Neither Here Nor There. Other directing credits include Feast of Famine, The Walthamstow Mysteries, Knitting Pattern, and The Conversation. Becka is also artistic director of Beautiful Confusion Collective, which is currently in residency at Hornsey Town Hall Arts Centre. Her solo performance BackStories was nominated for the Space to Dance Award at Brighton Fringe 2016. 


Produced by LegalAliens @LegalAliensITC

Supported by Hornsey Town Hall Arts Centre

Photographs from rehearsals, © John Watts







Kings Head Theatre, 115 Upper Street, London, N1 1QN.


From: 16 Oct 2016
To: 31 Oct 2016


Czech Center is a coorganizer of the event

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