The Rest I Make Up

Mon, 10/29/2018 - 7:00pm
DCTV, 87 Lafayette St, NYC

Doors 6:30pm | Event 7pm | No admittance after 7:30pm

“Extraordinary... a revelation and exaltation of the artistic essence."
— Richard Brody, The New Yorker

Winner, Frameline Film Festival 2018
Audience Award, Best Documentary

The Film

Directed by Michelle Memran / 2018 / 79 min

Maria Irene Fornes is one of America's greatest playwrights and most influential teachers, but many know her only as the ex-lover of writer and social critic Susan Sontag. The visionary Cuban-American dramatist constructed astonishing worlds onstage, writing over 40 plays and winning nine Obie Awards. At the vanguard of the nascent Off-Off Broadway experimental theater movement in NYC, Fornes is often referred to as American theater's "Mother Avant-Garde." When she gradually stops writing due to dementia, an unexpected friendship with filmmaker Michelle Memran reignites her spontaneous creative spirit and triggers a decade-long collaboration that picks up where the pen left off.

The duo travels from New York to Havana, Miami to Seattle, exploring the playwright's remembered past and their shared present. Theater luminaries such as Edward Albee, Ellen Stewart, Lanford Wilson, and others weigh in on Fornes's important contributions. What began as an accidental collaboration becomes a story of love, creativity, and connection that persists even in the face of forgetting.

Post-Screening Q&A

Michelle Memran (Director/Producer) is a journalist, illustrator, and filmmaker. For nearly twenty years she’s worked as a reporter, researcher, and editor in New York City. She’s also written for numerous publications, including Newsweek, The New York Times, The Brooklyn Rail, Vanity Fair and American Theatre magazine. Her oil pastel portraits have been commissioned by The New York Times Book Review, as well as by various theatrical and film productions, including The Civilians’ production of The Ladies written by Anne Washburn, and the independent film Adrift in Manhattan, starring Heather Graham. The Rest I Make Up is Michelle’s first film, for which she has received funding from the New York State Council on the Arts, the Frameline Completion Fund, the Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice, the JKW Foundation, and more than 600 individual donors. While working on The Rest I Make Up, Michelle was awarded fellowships at The MacDowell Colony and Brown University, where she twice served as a visiting artist in the University’s Theatre Arts & Performance Studies Department. Most recently, as part of Brown’s Fitt Artist Residency in 2016, Michelle collaborated with theater director Katie Pearl on a new performance and film project that juxtaposed characters and scenes from the plays of Maria Irene Fornes with outtakes from the film’s footage.


Eventbrite - DCTV Presents: Winter/Spring 2018

Doors 6:30pm | Event 7pm | No admittance after 7:30pm


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This event is part of the Fall 2018 season of DCTV Presents, DCTV’s signature screening and event series that champions groundbreaking nonfiction film.

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