Ma Colombine

© Ariane Catton Balabeau

Program Information

Genre / City Theatre / Geneva, Renens
Dates 3 May at 14:00, 4 May at 13:00
Venue at Shizuoka Arts Theatre
Duration 80 minutes
Language In French with Japanese subtitles
Seat Reserved seating
Direction by Omar PORRAS
Production Théâtre Am Stram Gram, TKM Théâtre Kléber-Méleau
© Ariane Catton Balabeau
© Ariane Catton Balabeau
© Ariane Catton Balabeau


A song in praise of love by the Colombian-born, Swiss magician of drama Omar PORRAS, who brilliantly portrays his own stormy life in Latin rhythms with plenty of humor.

The director and actor Omar PORRAS has been a SPAC regular since his debut with “Blood Wedding” in 1999, drawing ever more Japanese fans to his singular theatre world. This time, he directs and performs his solo autobiographical play, “Ma Colombine.”
Born in a family of poor farmers in Colombia, as a boy PORRAS spent a lot of time reading in a neighborhood bookshop, developing a special interest in Nietzsche and dreaming about the artistic city of Paris which the shopkeeper often talked about.
Then when he could, and despite his parents’ opposition, he crossed the ocean to that “City of Light” in France, where he paid his way at first by presenting silent puppet shows in the Metro’s subways.
A man who has been in love several times, and who has had many fantastic encounters, PORRAS has always adored theatre. Now, as he reviews his life through this work, audiences are sure to be happy sharing in his virtuoso performance full of positive energy, great physical movement — and fabulous Latin rhythms.


As audience members begin to fill the theatre, Omar PORRAS, the play’s central character, is already casting his spell as he mingles among them in welcome. Born in a family of poor farmers in Colombia, Omar was raised by a father who taught him to “take up a sickle rather than a pen,” and a mother passionate about education for her son. Though he graduated school with much effort, he didn’t know what to do next and joined the army, only to quit soon after. Then one day he was strongly impressed by a Nietzsche work he came across at his local bookshop. As he couldn’t afford to buy the book, he visited the shop frequently and read it there. Before long, Omar became friends with the shop’s owner, whose conversations introduced Omar to the cultural salons in Paris, a city of the arts he began to dream of — and which became a turning point in his life when he decided to go there and experience it for himself.

Director’s profile

Born in Bogota, Colombia, Omar PORRAS studied dance and drama in South America and Europe. He founded the Teatro Malandro in Geneva in 1990, intended as a centre for creation and training, where he developed a very personal creative approach based on movement. His theatrical technique is inspired by Western and Oriental traditions, biomechanics, Balinese, Indian and Japanese drama. From “Ubu King” to “Ay! QuiXote” and “L’Histoire du soldat” (The Soldier’s Tale: text by C.F. RAMUZ, music by Igor STRAVINSKI, presented in Geneva in October 2003, enacted again at the Théâtre de la Ville – Paris in September 2004), PORRAS blends the arts of acting, puppetry, music and dance. He places the body at the core of his dramatic research, in order to create a harmonisation of speech and act, where rhythm and singing also play an important part.
PORRAS’s repertoire draws as much from the classics, like “El Don Juan” by Tirso de MOLINA (Théâtre de la Ville, Paris, 2005), “Pedro et le commandeur” by Lope de VEGA (Comédie-Française, 2006), “Les Fourberies de Scapin” by Molière (Théâtre de Carouge-Atelier de Genève, 2009) or “Amour et Psyché” (TKM Théâtre Kléber-Méleau, 2017), as from modern and contemporary texts, like “Noces de sang” by Federico Garcia LORCA (Comédie de Genève, 1997), and “Maître Puntila et son valet Matti” by Bertolt BRECHT (Théâtre Forum Meyrin, Genève, 2007).
As an actor, he played a part in almost all of his own creations. He played Krapp’s role in “La Dernière Bande” by Samuel BECKETT (2017) and his own character in “Ma Colombine” by Fabrice MELQUIT (Théâtre Am Stram Gram, 2019). Amongst other productions, he also directed a musical with composer and singer Angélique IONATOS: Alas pa’ volar, a tribute to the life and work of Frida KAHLO (Théâtre Forum Meyrin – Geneva and Théâtre de la Ville – Paris, September and October 2003). In January 2004 he staged “La Visite de la vieille dame” (The Visit of the Old Lady, by F. Dürrenmatt) which kicked off an international tour right after the first performances at the Théâtre Forum Meyrin.
Educating new generations is very important for PORRAS. He has also directed several workshops, such as at Les Ateliers and ARTA in Paris, Grand T Theatre in Nantes (France), at SPAC in Shizuoka, and at the Manufacture-HETSR in Lausanne (Switzerland).
His latest creation with Teatro Malandro “”Carmen l’audition”” was written during the lockdown after postponing many times “”Le Conte des contes””, another play of his own. “”Carmen l’audition”” was first shown outdoor during summer 2021 and will continue another tour this summer.

Cast / Staff

Text: Fabrice MELQUIOT
Direction, performance, scenography and costume: Omar PORRAS

Direction assistant: Domenico CARLI
External perspective: Alexandre ETHEVE and Philippe CAR
Sound creation: Emmanuel NAPPEY
Music direction and piano: Cédric PESCIA
Choreography collaboration: Kaori ITO
Stage manager: Chingo BENSONG
Light: Omar PORRAS
and Marc-Etienne DESPLAND
Photos: Ariane Catton BALABEAU

Stage manager: Gabriel SKLENAR
Sound manager: Emmanuel NAPPEY
Light manager: Marc-Etienne DESPLAND

Special thanks to Emmanuelle RICCI, Tania D’AMBROGIO and Yvan SCHLATTER

Production: Théâtre Am Stram Gram, TKM Théâtre Kléber-Méleau

TKM is supported by le Canton de Vaud, la Ville de Lausanne, la Ville de Renens and other communes de l’Ouest lausannois, la Fondation Sandoz, la Fondation Leenaards, la Loterie Romande Vaudoise, le Pour-cent culturel Migros, la Fondation Michalski, la Fondation Casino Barrière.

Théâtre Am Stram Gram is supported by la Ville de Genève and le Service culturel Migros-Genève.

Stage manager: HARAIKAWA Yukio
Stage: FURUYA Kazumi, YOU Kakin
Lighting: HIGUCHI Masayuki, TAKEZAWA Akira
Sound: MAKI Daisuke, HAYASHI Tetsuya, OTSUKI Minori
Wardrobe: SATO Rise

Interpretation: ISHIKAWA Hiromi
Subtitle translation: TANOKUCHI Seigo
Subtitle operation: ABE Sachi
Supervisor of Subtitles: NISHIO Sachiko
Production: KUGA Haruko, TOYOSHIMA Yuji

Technical director: MURAMATSU Atsushi
Lighting manager: HIGUCHI Masayuki
Sound manager: SAWADA Yukino

Under the auspices of the Embassy of Switzerland in Japan, the Embassy of the Republic of Colombia


◎Pre-performance talk: Starting 25 minutes before each performance


* Please refrain from taking infants to the ordinary seats.
* The front row of the audience seats for this program will be Row M. There will be a distance of more than 3m between the front row and the actors speaking on stage.
* Performers will appear on the stage only after having a negative result from a COVID-19 PCR test or antigen test.

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