Do You Like Banana, Comrades?

It's difficult being young and in love when your Dad is a high ranking official in Ceausescu's communist machine, your mother weeps all the time and your brother is trying to kill you.

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by Csaba Szekely

This wild and sideways look at life behind the Iron Curtain during Ceausescu's regime is a first play by a young Hungarian writer living in Romania and was shortlisted for the BBC World Service/British Council's International Playwriting Competition.

Director: Marion Nancarrow

The play has just won the prestigious Richard Imison Award for best original script by a writer new to radio in 2012. The judges said of it: 'Do You Like Banana, Comrade? is a deft, witty, and often very moving picture of life under a totalitarian regime. Right from the start we fell in love with the charming, wide-eyed and irrepressible narrator. Growing up in Ceausescu's Romania, Robert only gradually realises the power his father wields as one of the dictator's henchmen. The adroit use of irony allows us to see through his naive logic and imaginative explanations, and through the chinks comes a real and growing sense of horror.... Székely packs a whole world and its politics into his play, whilst retaining a lightness of touch. Do You Like Banana, Comrade? is Csaba Székely's first ever play, written in his second language: a formidable achievement.'

Csaba Székely was born in Targu Mures, Romania. He's a writer, editor and assistant lecturer at his hometown's University of Arts. He writes mostly in his native Hungarian language, and his works frequently deal with social issues, such as unemployment, nationalism, alcoholism and corruption. His first play (Do You Like Banana, Comrades?) has won the regional prize for Europe in the BBC's International Radio Playwriting Competition in 2009. Since then, his dramas and their staged performances have received numerous awards both in Romania and Hungary. His play Mineflowers

has been voted Best Drama of the Year by the Hungarian Theatre Critics' Association.