Contemporary plays by Belarusian authors

in translation

About the project is a digital platform that collects contemporary Belarusian dramaturgy by both famous and emerging authors and translates them into different languages. The pilot version of the project includes 5 plays written by women and translated into English. For us, this is an important gesture in the context of post-Soviet literature and theatre, and in general, modernity.

These plays will be presented by English-speaking actors in a stage reading format in January 2024. Follow the schedule of presentations on our website and social networks!

Why Belarusian drama?

Playwrights from Belarus take one of the leading positions in the post-Soviet countries. Their works were already well-known in the early 2000s in both (non)Russian-speaking and European contexts, which a little later would constitute the “phenomenon” of Belarusian drama. Basically, it comprised the emergence of a new dramatic tradition and at the same time, the absence of a “dramatic school”.

The authors came not only from theatrical and literary fields, but also from areas completely distant from art. Their plays were shortlisted for prestigious drama competitions and staged both in Belarus and abroad. However, they were translated from the original into other languages on a case-by-case basis, and you would not find a single platform with all translations available, less so in English.

The themes of these plays are varied, but their leitmotifs are generally characteristic of the “new drama”. These are crisis attitude, loneliness, violence, family and social conflicts, a search for a foothold in a changing world. Many authors explore national identity: the history of Belarus, its national code and modern myth. At the same time, their texts are glocal: authentic and universal at the same time.

The world of Belarusian drama is a small universe that stretches from classical to post-dramatic plays. Tendentious auto-fiction texts and “I-writing” are becoming increasingly common. At the same time, Belarusian authors have their own voice, which we invite you to hear.

The first five texts on the platform written by women raise not just a range of issues related to crises, transformations and the search for identity. They reveal a woman’s perspective: for example, what it’s like to be a mother in times of crisis, how to change birth patterns and convey the positive experience of female socialization, how to exist in a patriarchal world where power becomes stronger than reason. These female voices are at the forefront of Belarusian drama: writers are actively experimenting with the themes and forms of plays. We hope you will appreciate their works and join the online readings in January!

We are deeply grateful to everyone who collaborated on the project, dedicated their time and professionalism to create the platform and thus promote Belarusian dramaturgy in the world!

Our platform will be soon replenished with new texts and translation languages, and new presentations both online and in-person.

If you want:
– to work with any of the texts and need a digital version, or
– to submit your play in translation or your translation of a play, or
– to collaborate and support us,

Then send us an email: [email protected]


The Gorgons

by Kasia Chekatouskaya

Any Spot with Marks Left Behind

by Maryia Bialkovich

Everything is Alright

by Vlada Khmel

The Whore

by Alena Ivaniushanka


Pictures, Videos and Everything Else

How do socio-political crises affect sexuality and libido? And the online sex industry? The play is based on the real-life story of a heroine from a post-Soviet country who dared not to enter the porn industry. Face verification in dating applications, masks in social networks, the presence of a “third eye” all form our current reality. The text explores how the camera transforms social relationships, including that of a rapist and a victim.

 About reader:

Aurelie Roxane Imbert (France) is a young French actress and a multilingual writer, poet and playwright.  She also is a dancer, circus artist and trapezist and martial artist. Living in Marseilles, France, she has Polish roots.

Any Spot with Marks Left Behind

Timelessness, anti-dialogue and an atmosphere of suspense. Any Spot with Marks Left Behind is a play that has the intonation of contemporary absurdism. The heroine finds herself in someone else’s apartment and doesn’t remember how she got there. Strange sounds out of nowhere, overly friendly hosts and uncomfortable silence. The play has two acts that are radically different: by the end, the collective unconscious is transformed into a search for self-determination. The playwright explores the origins of violence, social and personal norms that do not always reflect reality.

About reader:

Sibylla Meienberg (UK) went to drama school in London and has had a varied career since. She’s toured with the National Theatre (The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime) and has appeared on British National TV (Series ‘Mayflies’ & ‘Grace’).

The Whore

The heroines of this play are making a movie about school. While coming up with the script, they remember their teenage years. Fiction is intertwined with reality, and at some point it is difficult to understand whether this is the directors’ life experience or their fantasy. The story is a far cry from the plot of romantic films. The girls explore traumatic experiences and the silent violence that occurs far away from parental control. The author notes that patriarchal society offers a growing girl two paths: “good girl” or “prostitute.” Hence follows the traumatic experience of female socialization.

About readers:

Aleksandra Sroka (Poland) is an actress. Born in Zakopane, Poland. Since 2019, she has been a guest performer at the STU Theatre, KTO Theater in Krakow. Since 2022, she has been cooperating with the 6th floor Theatreand the Komuna Theatre in Warsaw. Since 2023, she has been collaborating with the Powszechny Theatre, the Ujazdowski Castle Centre for Contemporary Art and with the WolnoSłowa zone in Warsaw.

Palina Dabravolskaya (Belarus) is a stage director, actress, musician. Currently based in Warsaw, Poland. Have plays in Belarus, Poland and Czech Republic, but mostly works on her own production.

The Gorgons

The Gorgons is a is a text replete with metaphor, poetry and myth. Through the voices of three Medusas, the author deconstructs the “woman should” attitude and explores the stereotypes that exist in society. The text poetically explores the social role of women, the problems of violence and the patriarchal world order. The play is characterized by the intimacy of a monostory, which acquires scale and becomes a collective statement on behalf of the playwright.

About reader:

Sissy Papathanassiou (Greece) is a historian, dramatist and translator. She has studied law, theatre and cinema in Greece. She continued her studies in Social Anthropology, the History of Civilizations, and Theatre in Paris at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales and at the Sorbonne. She has written extensively, edited numerous books, and served inter alia as head of the Readings Department at the National Theatre of Greece, on the Board of the International Theatre Institute/UNESCO, and as a curator of Greek participations at international cultural events. She is the Director of Literature at the Hellenic Ministry of Culture.

Everything is Alright

A play about trying to find inner freedom. The roles here are not defined: sister, mother, grandmother, daughter or great-grandmother – the voices of generations are heard through the painful dialogue of two heroines. Women strive to break the vicious circle of ancestral memory and learn to love. However, acceptance and forgiveness turn out to be more difficult than hating. Especially when you notice in yourself the traits of those to whom you would never want to compare yourself.

About readers:

Mollie Savage (Ireland) is a theatre maker from Cork who is currently in her fourth year of the BA in Theatre and Drama Studies at MTU Cork School of Music. She is also stepping into the role of director for the first time for an upcoming production of Eurydice by Sarah Ruhl which will be performed in the Stack Theatre in April. 

Trina Scott (Ireland) is a lecturer on the BA in Theatre and Drama Studies programme at MTU Cork School of Music, where she teaches modules in Theatre History, Performance, Theatre Lab and Research. As a performer, Trina has featured in radio drama and stage productions. She has not performed for some time and is delighted to have the opportunity to be involved in this project.