Théâtre La Bordée
1:20 (without intermission)
In French, English and Inuktitut with subtitles
Collectif Aalaapi (Montreal)
In Inuktitut, “aalaapi” means creating silence in order to hear something beautiful. That is precisely what we are invited to do as we bear witness to this surprising theatre-radio hybrid carrying the voices of the women of the North. Originally created as a documentary podcast, the project tells the tale of five young Inuit women who talk about their lives between Montreal and Nunavik, their aspirations, their past, but above all, their present and their future. On stage, excerpts from the podcast and a local radio show punctuate Hannah and Niap’s day, who can be seen going about their business through the window of their small house.
Heavy and solemn? Rather poetic and mesmerizing. The women’s stories are juxtaposed with sounds of nature (wind, rain, thunder, animals), projections of snowy landscapes and maps on the walls of the house, and simple everyday gestures like knitting, drinking tea, playing cards, texting, making bannock and going fishing—with a gun because a polar bear is roaming the area. Existing between tradition and modernity, the room slowly and gently takes us away from clichés while illustrating the crucial role radio plays in Inuit communities. It is time to open our eyes, our ears, and our hearts.