Inclusiveness. It’s a word you hear often from Milena Buziak, who directs the children’s play Le cheval de bleu, presented June 1 and 2 at the Nouvelle Scène Gilles Desjardins.
In a rare creative decision, sign language is at the root of the artistic concept. For the young director, this feature of Marcel Cremer’s original script presents all kinds of beautiful challenges – and possibilities.
“The poetry of the text allows us to expand the imaginative scope of the play and the images that can be conveyed by sign language, by the physical expression of that language,” explains Buziak, who is also the artistic director of Voyageurs Immobiles, the Montreal-based theatre company co-producing the show with Théâtre de la Vieille 17.
A sublime reflection on the theme of transmission, Le cheval de bleu is recommended for audiences age 5 to adult, both hearing and non-hearing. The Saturday morning performance will be a “relaxed performance” specially adapted to accommodate children with autism and those with special needs.
Milena Buziak drew inspiration for this project from her experience with sign language as director of the play Traversée (presented at the NAC in 2017), one of whose characters is deaf. Once again she found an attentive ear at NAC’s French Theatre, the associate producer of Le cheval de bleu.
“I have a great rapport with [French Theatre associate director] Mélanie Dumont, who has been following my work for a long time,” says Buziak. “I feel that I’m moving forward in terms of my ideas and artistic process, and that Mélanie is here to support me. It’s also an honour to know that NAC donors support my work. It’s a wonderful mark of recognition.”