Sasha is seven years old when he learns that his mother isn’t his mother and that he was kidnapped by his father, who built a life with another woman. Ever since, Sasha wants just one thing: to become famous so that his mother, wherever she is, will recognize him on TV. We are in Soviet Ukraine, in the mid-1980s, and Sasha’s quest for identity reflects the quest of an entire nation that has lost its bearings. Between the Chernobyl disaster and the failure of glasnost, Sasha tries to rebuild himself as everything crumbles around him: his dreams, his ideals, his country. Supported by an actor friend who raises Lenin from the dead and a depressed lover who pins all her hopes on perestroika, will he find his way through the rubble of a century that is waning as he looks on?
A powerful portrait, both moving and fantastic, Moi, dans les ruines rouges du siècle (Me, In the Red Ruins of the Century) is inspired by the extraordinary journey of Sasha Samar, a Québec actor of Ukrainian origin.
Sasha plays himself in his personal history, with as a backdrop the larger history of a Soviet Union in profound transformation. And nothing is left out: Gagarin’s moon mission, the Red Army and military service, the collapse of the Soviet regime, and… the hockey Summit Series! It evokes a world recently broken apart, but more importantly, a lie created to protect an ideal. As our eyes are turned to Ukraine, this new hit theatre production from the company Trois Tristes Tigres, created at Centre du Théâtre d'Aujourd'hui in 2012, is a chance to be immersed in a turning point of the recent history of this resilient people, while offering “moments of great comedy and tragic monologues of a nameless beauty.” (Le Devoir).
“It wasn’t the collapse of the Soviet bloc or Lenin’s speech that drew me in, but Sasha’s personal history. His family tragedy, with all that history as the backdrop, but above all, the odyssey of one man, alone, lost in the ruins…” — Olivier Kemeid, author and director