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15 Seconds

15 Seconds
Your Price: $17.95 CDN
Author: Francois Archambault
Translated by: Bobby Theodore
Publisher: Talonbooks (cover image may change)
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 96
Pub. Date: 2000
ISBN-10: 0889224277
ISBN-13: 9780889224278
Cast Size: 1 female, 3 male

About the Play:

Winner of the 1998 Governor General's Award for Drama (Canadian equivalent of the Pulitzer Prize)

15 Seconds (English version of 15 secondes) is a full-length play by François Archambault translated by Bobby Theodore. A touching and very funny work, which tells the story of a young man with cerebral palsy, his unemployed brother and a young woman both brothers love.

15 Seconds explores the lives of four contemporary Montréalers in their 20s and 30s. Fifteen seconds. That's all it takes to turn an ordinary birth into a physical challenge if an emerging baby doesn't get enough oxygen. Mathieu will suffer from cerebral palsy for the rest of his life, because at the moment of his birth his brain was deprived of oxygen for 15 seconds. This doesn't prevent him from thinking, acting, feeling, and being relatively autonomous. The most difficult thing may be to convince a beautiful woman to love him, so he enlists his brother, Claude, who could prove to be a big help to him. Brimming with a dark and brittle humour, 15 secondes (15 Seconds), was originally written for Dave Richer, an actor/comedian with cerebral palsy.

15 secondes was first played to great acclaim at the "Festival Juste pour rire" ("Just for Laughs Festival") in Montréal in 1997. It was remounted in 1998 before touring Québec, and won the 1998 Governor General's Award for drama for its original French version. The English-language translation 15 Seconds premiered in 1999 at Alberta Theatre Projects (ATP) National playRites Festival of New Plays in Calgary and has been read or produced across Canada and in Ireland and the UK.

Cast: 1 female, 3 male

What people say:

"15 Seconds makes you laugh. But it's also a play that makes you think. And that's a pretty fine way to spend 90 minutes in a theatre." — The Ottawa Citizen

"This play is a mini masterpiece of absurdity, suspense, and pointed provocation, where the spectator is continuously confronted with himself and his own prejudices regarding love ... and physical handicaps." — Le Devoir

About the Playwright:

François Archambault is a Québec playwright who has authored or co-authored more than twenty plays, many of which have been translated into English, German and Italian, and produced across Canada and in Europe. Born in Montréal, and raised in its suburbs, he graduated from the National Theatre School of Canada's playwriting program and established his importance on the Québec theatre scene with the award-winning 15 secondes (15 Seconds), a darkly humorous play about social alienation arising from superficial relationships.

Bobby Theodore is a Canadian screenwriter, playwright, and translator who is a graduate of the National Theatre School of Canada's playwriting program. His first translation, François Archambault's 15 Seconds, was produced across Canada and earned him a nomination for the Governor General's Award for Literary Translation in 2000. Since then, he has gone on to translate over 20 plays from French to English, including the works of some of Quebec's most talented playwrights.

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