1 September 2015, Tuesday, 2:50

Reading of a play based on Andrei Sannikau’s letters to his son from prison took place in Minsk

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The reading of the play “Flying over the rainbow” by a Czech playwright Shimon Olivetin took place in Minsk on 18 December.

The play is based on the fairy-tales that the presidential candidate Andrei Sannikau wrote to his son from prison.

Andrei Sannikau realized that the contact was necessary with his four year old Danik who was under incredible stress after his father’s arrest. In time receiving the chapters of the fairy tale book about mice, leaving in a big house, became a sign that Andrei was alive, but as soon as the fairy tales stopped coming it was a bad sign: the relatives knew that the pressure on Sannikau went unbearable and the mailing channel was blocked again.

When he was in prison, Andrei Sannikau’s fairy tales were read in London by the stars of theatre and cinema Joanna Lumley, Michael Sheen and Sam West.

Based on the fairy tales a Czech playwright Shimon Olivetin wrote a play “Flying over the rainbow”. A famous man of letters and translator Siarhei Smatrychenka translated the play into Belarusian. On 18 December the actors of the Belarus Free theatre Viktoryia Biran, Sviatlana Sugaka, Anastasia Shcharbak, Aliaksei CHykanas and Yury Dalivelia read the play in Minsk.

“I was astounded by Andrei Sannikau’s fairy tales. You, probably, heard that the Czechs are cold people, for whom it is difficult to express emotions. But these fairy tales are very strong, very emotional, very kind. I am not a politicians, but humanly I was astounded and decided to write a play. The Czech naïve theatre Liberec will stage a performance on this paly in 11 May on the eve of Danik Sannikau’s birthday”, - the author of the “Flying over the rainbow” Shimon Olivetin told the charter97.org web-site.

“The play is written based on Andrei Sannikau’s fairy tales, which he made up for his son Danik when being imprisoned. A Czech playwright, hiding behind a pseudonym Shimon Olivetin, wrote a play based on the fairy tales and asked me to translate it, which I joyfully agreed on. There was barely enough time, but it seems that it turned well. All the more so that the play, as well as the fairy tales, which were its literature basis, are written wittily, lightly and amusingly.

With Shimon – let’s call him this way as long as he wanted so – we have known each other so several years and for the first time we met when he came to Minsk five years ago as a member of an amateur puppet theatre, which staged a play then in the building of the Free Theatre. Later Shimon came to Minsk one more time and took two actors of the Prague Na tahu theatre with him, They played the Vaclav Gavel’s play Protest in the same building. At the instance of Shimon I then translated the Protest into Belarusian in order for the spectators to be able to follow what was happening at the stage. And now the result of another cooperation with Shimon could be seen on the anniversary of Vaclav Gavel’s death and on the eve of the second anniversary of Andrei Sannikau’s imprisonment. That is a good date and a good children paly!”, - Siarhei Smatrychenka told the charter97.org web-site.

The play ends with Andrei Sannikau’s words that the leader of the European Belarus civic campaign videotaped.

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