Maria Manolescu Borsa: Inspiration and Influences

On writing, The Ivy Door

Maria Manolescu Borsa describes her approach to writing the play.

“It`s hard to write about real people, and it`s even harder when you don`t have the chance to discuss with them the result, when they are not alive anymore and when they were very special people. Gellu Nam was such a sensitive man, he worked so much to protect his very simple and pure existence, and he was such a cultivated and gifted man, that I decided to consider myself his very humble disciple. This was my approach: more than a play, I tried to wrote a spiritual exercise through which I hoped to understand Gellu Naum and to try to practice, at least for a bit, his way of understanding the reality and especially the surreality.”

What inspired her about the Gella Naum?

“His fascinating, deep and pure life-long love for his wife. A spiritual love which fuelled his art as well as his views of this world and the other one. There aren`t many people, especially artists, who can inspire us in such way that complete love is possible, that love can be happy, can fulfil even the deepest desires of our souls and can last for a lifetime. I think we need this message and it`s worth spreading.”

How was she inspired by the poet’s house?

“My husband, who joined me when I visited the house, had a very beautiful and intense dream in which we were trying to buy a house very similar with Naum`s. But this was my husband`s dream. I had to work a little bit harder than him, and write a play, so I hope that`s where you`ll find the complete answer to this question.”

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Maria Manolescu Borsa

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Maria Manolescu, playwright and fiction writer was born in Brasov, Romania, 14th October 1980. She has a Masters in Playwriting from U.N.A.T.C. (National University of Theatre and Film, Bucharest, Romania) and works in advertising. She is the mother of a gorgeous 2 year old boy.

Maria’s publishing debut was: The Weightlifter from Vitan a novel published by Polirom in 2006. Her second novel was published in 2010 – Like Drops of Blood on the Elevator Floor, by Curtea Veche.
She has won the dramAcum prize (the Romanian award for best new playwright) in 2007 with the plays With a little help from my friends (directed by Radu Apostol at the National Theatre of Iasi, Romania, 2007) and Sado-Maso Blues Bar (directed by Gianina Carbunariu at The Very Small Theatre, Bucharest, 2007).
In 2007, Maria attended the International Residency for Emerging Playwrights at the Royal Court Theatre, where she developed the play I’m Not Jesus Christ. (produced by Papercut Theatre, directed by Melissa Dunne, Theatre N16, London, 2016). Other plays include: Re:Re:Re:Hamlet (inspired by two Romanian blogs, a participating production at the Blog the Theatre Festival in Graz, Austria, 2008) and Love Thyself, a play about the homeless people of Bucharest (The Very Small Theatre, Bucharest, 2010). She took part of the site specific project Green Hours! created by Andreea Valean and Peca Stefan (2013).
Maria’s latest play, Slaves, talks about modern slavery and the (often hypocritical) role of the artist in dealing with hot social issues.
Some of her plays have been translated and presented in public readings in Turkish, Serbian, English and French.