Performance Reading

Thursday, May 18, 7:30pm

Recommended: "No Home Movie" Saturday, May 13, 4:30pm screening

MY MOTHER LAUGHS (Ma mere rit)
“My Mother Laughs” (Ma mere rit) is a performative reading of Chantal Akerman’s prose, written during her mother’s illness, shortly before her death. Similarities echo in “No Home Movie” which Akerman filmed in the final months of her mother’s life. “My Mother Laughs” is presented as an intimate portrayal of the time spent between Chantal and her mother, Nelly. Grace Carter, Paige McKinney and Ron Mason Gassaway interpret Chantal’s disarmingly direct words in the spirit of her relationship to her mother, her self, her films and how her mother and her own life were intricately entwined and over-shadowed by the Holocaust (Nelly was a survivor of Auschwitz). Grace Carter, as performer, reads as a conduit for Chantal’s “voice,” honoring her boldness, her rawness, her quietude, her wry observations and her deep well of reverence for her mother.

Tickets: $15 general, $10 artists and seniors, $5 students.
Donate what you can. No one turned away at the door.

This performance is conceived and acted by Portland-based Grace Carter with co-director Paige McKinney and sound by Ron Mason Gassaway.

Grace Carter is a theatre artist who has been producing, directing and performing critically acclaimed theatre productions for the past 17 years in Portland. Grace’s work focuses on the visceral and immersive qualities of live performance and incorporates a multidisciplinary and contemporary aesthetic to her work.

Paige McKinney is an actor, director, choreographer and dancer whose focus is on new live performance works, and whose work synthesizes movement, the voice, and unexplored bodies of text.

Ron Mason Gassaway is a songwriter and composer, live performer and video artist who works with directors, writers and companies. He is a founding member of the provocative improvisational group Party Killer.

“My Mother Laughs,” first performed in English at The Kitchen in New York in 2013, as part of the exhibition “Chantal Akerman: Maniac Shadows, is the second of Akerman’s written and performed works; her first was a reading of "A Family in Brussels" at Dia:Beacon in 2001. These are the only known reading performances by Akerman in the US. Zena Zezza’s production of “My Mother Laughs” continues the legacy of Akerman’s text and performance-based work.

“My Mother Laughs” is an excerpt from Chantal Akerman’s confessional book, “Ma mere rit,” published by Mercure de France in 2013 to rave reviews. Akerman presented a dramatic reading of “My Mother Laughs” at The Kitchen in New York on April 11, 2013, as part of the exhibition “Chantal Akerman: Maniac Shadows.” Akerman’s film “No Home Movie” was released in 2015. Natalie Liebel Akerman died at the age of 86 in April, 2014. Chantal died, October 5, 2015.

Location: PNCA Mediatheque
511 NW Broadway
"My Mother Laughs" (Ma Mere Rit), (performance still, Actor, Grace Carter, May 18, 2017
"My Mother Laughs" (Ma Mere Rit), (performance still, Actor, Grace Carter, May 18, 2017