“Songshine was a kind of miracle. I was lucky enough to be part of making it happen.” — Gillian Moor
Ralph Maraj will star in the Monday Night Theatre Forum on January 18 at Trinidad Theatre Workshop.
It is the first edition for 2016 and the third in an ongoing series which started last November, a release said.
Actor, playwright, director, teacher and broadcaster, Maraj is also a politician. He served as Minister of Foreign Affairs under a People's National Movement (PNM) administration; Minister of Communication and Information Technology under a United National Congress (UNC) administration; and, was a founding member of National Team Unity before returning to the PNM to work as a speech writer for PM Patrick Manning. Prior to entering politics in 1991, Maraj worked as a teacher at Naparima College, San Fernando. He also attended the school.
Maraj has written several plays, the most successful being Cynthia Sweetness. He also starred in the critically acclaimed movie Bim, described by Bruce Paddington in Caribbean Beat Magazine as "one of the most important films to be produced in T&T."
Monday Night Theatre Forum is hosted by Tony Hall and Raymond Choo Kong and is presented by Playwrights Workshop Trinbago, Raymond Choo Kong Productions and Trinity-in-Trinidad Global Learning Site in association with Trinidad Theatre Workshop (TTW) and Central Bank Auditorium.
This production is a new series for open and frank discussions with renowned theatre artists, some of whom have achieved very high acclaim at home and abroad. In the forum our many amazing theatre artists give some indications as to how they approach the creative process and how they overcome the many obstacles that life often throws at all of us. Our encounters with them, their work and play, make a great deal of difference to our lives and in the forum we learn more of the significance of their presence among us and get an inkling as to the value of being involved in theatre.
Episode One of the forum opened at TTW on November 30, 2015 with the venerable and evergreen Alvert Laveau. He reflected on his long and eventful life of overcoming some of the most incredible obstacles. Beginning in Point-a-Pierre, Laveau mapped his colourful theatrical journey then taking his audience to the wilds of an optimistic time in Port-of-Spain, circa the 1950’s, and then on to trouble-shooting management with Lever Brothers in Kinshasa, Congo, and Canada.
Laveau subsequently worked in the theatre with dance icon Joyce Kirton and with Nobel Laureate in Literature Derek Walcott which eventually got him into the thick of Joe Papp’s mainstream professional theatre in New York in the late sixties and early seventies and lots more.
Episode Two of the forum featured Nikki Crosby on December 14, 2015. Crosby, a comedian, actress and broadcaster, shared her story, first hailing from her childhood in St James, to attending university in Canada, then to The Apollo Theatre in New York. She also expounded on the vagaries of surviving in a calypso tent in Port-of-Spain, comedy stages all over the Caribbean and North America, the theatre stages around T&T, to work, and skills training, in Los Angeles and, of course, the International Soca Monarch competitions.
Monday Night Theatre Forum takes place at the TTW, corner Jerningham Avenue and Norfolk Street, Belmont from 7pm.
For more information about the event and the TTW’s activities, visit the Facebook page: Trinidad Theatre Workshop.