L’histoire terrible mais inachevée de Sihanouk Roi du Cambodge (The terrible though unfinished story of Sihanouk, King of Cambodia”) is a play by Helene Cixous written in 1985 that recounts contemporary Cambodian history starting from the country’s independence in 1953 until the collapse of the Khmer Rouge regime in 1979.
The seven hour-long play in Khmer language revisits a difficult page in Cambodian history on stage. This play has been adapted between 2007 and 2011 by Georges Bigot and Delphine Cotty with 30 Cambodian actors from Phare Ponleu Selpak.
Phare Ponleu Selpak (PPS) is a non-profit cultural organisation in Battambang, Cambodia, that offers young people a way out of poverty by training them to become professional artists and performers. Established in 2004, PPS uses the arts – circus, theatre, visual arts – as an instrument for human development and social change and steers underprivileged children and youth towards a better quality of life through cultural, artistic, educational and social skills. Over 18 years, PPS has become a professional art school and effective social center with far-reaching impact and has played an influential role in promoting and developing Khmer culture over the years after the Khmer Rouge genocide.
Phare Ponleu Selpak are raising funds to support the production of L’histoire terrible mais inachevée de Sihanouk Roi du Cambodge and are currently more than 70% towards their target of €6,000.
UPDATE: PPS successfully reached their fundraising goal for the theatre project thanks to the support of more than 70 donors.
Text, video and image from PPS