'Notes to the Motherland' probes history, immigrant experience

multiple charactersPaul Rajeckas will present a one-man tragicomic tale of the immigrant experience, history and healing when he performs “Notes to the Motherland” at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 5 and 6 in Tyler Hall’s Waterman Theatre.

SUNY Oswego’s Artswego Performing Arts Series will present the performances and related lectures as part of the college’s Arts and Memory series.

The story follows a journey of discovery by Rajeckas’ character Paulius Bombalytis, the naive and hapless son of Lithuanians who fled World War II in Europe. He receives a diary that unlocks dark family secrets and takes him to his ancestral homeland in search of answers.

“By turns humorous, enraging, bewildering and moving, it interweaves the most profound personal emotions with political and historical events, assembled with great skill and undeniable honesty,” noted the Sunday Herald of Edinburgh, Scotland. “For integrity and sheer physical dexterity, this piece is justified in claiming the mantle of Charlie Chaplin.”

Rajeckas combined his background in physical comedy, stage performance and arts education in collaborating with director George Chieffet, a poet and psychotherapist, to create “Notes to the Motherland.” The resulting solo show combines original music composed by Rajeckas, sound effects, eccentric movement and three-dimensional characterization. Rajeckas plays nearly a dozen characters, including Paulius’ parents, grandmother and even a men’s choir.

Tickets cost $12 ($10 for seniors and children, $7 for SUNY Oswego students). For information or reservations, contact Tyler box office at 312-2141 or tickets@oswego.edu.

For evening and weekend events at SUNY Oswego, visitors may park in any campus lot free of charge.

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CONTACT: Mary Avrakotos, 312-4581 or artswego@oswego.edu

(Posted: Jan 10, 2008)