The Closest Farthest Away (La Entrañable Lejanía)

Teatro Mella – Havana, Cuba 2009
Miami Light Project – Miami, USA 2010

The Closest Farthest Away (La Entrañable Lejanía) was both a cinema-theater production and groundbreaking cultural exchange between US and Cuban artists. Conceived by Sage and Aleigh Lewis and Project Por Amor, this project sought to bridge the physical, emotional, and artistic isolation of our two nations.

Build as a co-equal collaboration between US and Cuban artists, this original work was co-written, co-directed, and co-produced by artists in both countries.

The staging was work-shopped in Los Angeles in 2008, and again in 2009, before the company returned to Havana to complete and premiere the final work in December 2009. Through this innovative use of media in performance, Cuban actors transcend 50 years of barriers-appearing virtually on an American stage and creating a dramatic metaphor for the impossibility of exchange. Actors on screen and actors on stage grapple with their inability to be in the same place, demonstrating the struggle between our two countries separated by less than 90 miles.

This project was made possible in part by the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, Project Troubador, The Sufficiency Foundation, American Composers’ Forum, El Movimiento Nacional de Video, Cuban National Television, and a grassroots movement of over one hundred private individuals.

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Photos: Adrianne Koteen