20th of November English-language premiere

CR4B/RAND INK CO-OP proudly present the first English translation of The 20th of November by Lars Norén

". . . If you can't become famous for doing something good, you can still become famous for doing bad. To leave your mark on this world." – Lars Norén

CR4B/Rand Ink are proud to present a workshop production of The 20th of November by Lars Norén in a new translation by Gord Rand, starring Gord Rand and directed by Steve McCarthy. Performances run October 25-28 at a site-specific location at 499 Dundas Street West (south-east corner of Spadina and Dundas).

Lars Norén is regarded by many to be the greatest Swedish playwright since Strindberg, and is one of the most produced and controversial playwrights in Europe. The 20th of November is a soliloquy spoken by a young man preparing to conduct a Columbine-style massacre at his school and is based upon the online journals of Sebastian Bosse, a German teenager who opened fire on students and teachers at his high school in Westphalia. The play unflinchingly explores Sebastian's alienation and the kind of mental state that can lead to these acts of extreme violence.

When the play was first produced in 2007, Norén said: "Nothing like this has ever happened in Scandinavia, but I feel that it will sooner or later." Four years later, with the terrible actions of Anders Breivik in Norway, that prophecy came true.

Norén continued, "Those who are rejected to the margins of society don't have a future. They understand very early that their existence counts for very little in the eyes of the wider community. No one gives them any function in society. We look at them as pieces of garbage and they become garbage because they have nothing at all to do. This process can have dramatic outcomes… Young people kill their classmates, their teachers to make some definite mark, to prove that they do exist."

This workshop will mark the first time the play has been presented in English. The production was recently dropped without explanation in Necessary Angel's recent restructuring and the creative team could not bear the thought that this timely and controversial piece might not be seen.
"We couldn't imagine not going ahead with the piece," says translator and performer Gord Rand, who first came to Norén's work while touring in Europe. "It just felt too timely, too relevant. It offers a view from the most lost and hopeless among us. Its raw violence and anger is reflected in newscasts everyday. What does that say about where we are as a civilization? That's what Norén is exploring and we just couldn't let that drop when Necessary Angel decided that they couldn't produce the show."

This work-in-progress presentation will be presented at the site-specific location of 499 Dundas Street West (south-east corner of Spadina and Dundas) and is directed and designed by up-and-coming theatre-maker Steve McCarthy.

Gord Rand recently performed – with Steve McCarthy as his Horatio – in Graham McLaren's Hamlet, which was created by Necessary Angel and presented as part of the World Stage Festival in 2009, and was the most Dora-nominated production of the season. He has written such Dora-nominated plays as Orgy in the Lighthouse, Pond Life and The Trial of Thumbelina. He is unafraid of controversy and believes igniting debate through storytelling is fundamental to a functioning democracy.

Steve McCarthy is coming off the success of playing one of the lead roles in Picture Day, one of the most buzzed about films of the Toronto International Film Festival. His dark and disturbing production of Bliss by Olivier Choiniere at Buddies in Bad Times, made with a bi-cultural team of anglo and francophone artists, established him as an artist to watch. He is the band-leader of the ElastoCitizens, who recently launched their newest EP with a sold-out concert at the Horseshoe Tavern. He is the Artistic Director of Candles are for Burning whose unofficial mandate is to make rock-and-roll like it's theatre, and make theatre like it's rock-and-roll.

The 20th of November (a workshop production)
Written by: Lars Norén. Translated by: Gord Rand. Directed by: Steve McCarthy. Performed by: Gord Rand.
Designed by: Steve McCarthy. Stage Managed by: Crystal Salverda.
October 25 – 28, 2012 at 499 Dundas Street West
Thursday-Sunday 9pm
Tickets: $15 at door or in advance at www.secureaseat.com

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