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"Snow" by Blandine Savetier and Waddah Saab at Columbia University

On Friday, June 14, 2019 at 7 PM, the Second Columbia University School of the Arts International Play Reading Festival will present Snow by Blandine Savetier and Waddah Saab,  translated in English by Taylor Gaines.

When Ka, a respected poet and journalist living in exile in Germany, returns to his homeland in Kars, Turkey to report on the increase in suicides among young Muslim women, he is swept into a cascade of conflict, corruption, and zealotry among competing factions of the region.

The stage adaptation of Nobel Prize Laureate Orhan Pamuk's acclaimed novel captures the great conflicts of our time: Western versus Eastern culture, secularism versus religion, and the lives lost in these struggles.

The original French production toured France with critical and public acclaim, and in 2018, toured for a month and a half in national theaters in China. A first staged reading in English was presented at CUNY-Martin E. Segal Center in October.  

Read here an interview with Blandine and Taylor Gaines about adapting Snow for the stage  (October 2018)

About the festival at Columbia U.: Organized by Carol Becker and David Henry Hwang, this marquee festival presents readings of three plays by living international playwrights. This year, in addition to Blandine Savetier and Waddah Saab, the  two other playwrights part of the festival are Blanca Domenech from Spain and Pablo Manzy from Chile.

A panel discussion with the playwrigths, the translators, and Festival director, David Henry Hwang, will take place on Sunday, June 16, at 4:45 PM.

To know more about the festival click here

Registration opens Thursday, May 2, 2019.


Blandine Savetier is a French actress, director, and playwright. With Waddah Saab, she has written theatrical adaptations of works by Orhan Pamuk. A recipient of the Critic’s Choice Award for her production of The President by Thomas Bernhard, her work has been performed in Théâtre du Rond-Point and Théâtre National de la Colline in Paris, Théâtre National in Brussels, and Théâtre National de Strasbourg, where she an associate director. Following her 2017 production in the Théâtre National de Strasbourg and a tour in France, her theatrical adaptation of Pamuk’s novel Snow drew international attention and praise, with television reportage by ARTE, TV5 Monde, and the BBC. It toured for a month and a half in national theaters in China. She will direct Odysseus at the Avignon International Theater Festival in July 2020. Savetier has taught acting for over ten years.

Waddah Saab is a French dramaturg. He has collaborated with Blandine Savetier’s theatre company since 2001. Together, they wrote a theatrical adaptation of Orhan Pamuk's novel Snow, as well as L'homme qui voulait être une île (The Man Who Wanted To Be An Island), an adaptation of a short story from an adaptation of Pamuk’s Black Book that has been performed at Théâtre National de Strasbourg and Journées Théâtrales de Carthage in Tunis. Snow has been presented in China, France, and the United States.