SFÂNTA: HELL BENT ON HEAVEN
A solo show based on the Romanian Orthodox Saint Teodora de la Sihla, but BEFORE she became a saint. Back when she was just a young, lesbian novitiate trying to strike it holy in 1680’s Romania.
COMING UP: “Sfânta: Hell Bent on Heaven” will play at the Armory in Somerville, September 28th and 29th!
WANT TO BOOK Sfânta? Fill out this contact sheet! I’ll get back to you as soon as I’m done praying.
LEARN MORE about the real Teodora de la Sihla here!
Teodora just wants to be holy already so she can be revered by pilgrims and perform over-the-top miracles. In the process she discovers that she’s evil, she likes women’s hips, and she has accidentally poisoned the whole convent. One actor, eight characters, and a whole lot of drama!
How I Wrote Sfânta: Hell Bent on Heaven
Two years ago I went for a run, and I stopped in the middle of the road because I had a thought: what if I wrote a comedy about a girl who wants to be a Saint, not for the holiness but for the fame? I’m Romanian, what if I set this in Romania in the 17th century, a time when Saints were actual celebrities? And what if I played all the characters? And get out of the road Diana, a car is about to hit you.
Two years later, I've researched and found one of the few women Russian Orthodox saints, Sfȃnta Teodora de la Sihla. The historical Teodora did live in Vărzăreşti, ran to the woods to escape an Ottoman attack on her convent, and became a saint. I wrote my version of Teodora de la Sihla, with Romanian swear words, larger than life characters, and a lot of gay shit. My Teodora is a petty brat at the beginning of the play, and it's only with the help (and criticism) of the other characters that she can stand a chance at being a Saint.
I turned in "Sfȃnta: Hell Bent on Heaven" as my thesis project, performed it many times at Wellesley College, graduated, and am now unveiling Teodora's journey to the world, one festival at a time.
TEODORA - 14. Has wanted to be a Saint since she can remember, but mostly for the fame.
IOSEFINA - 16. Laysister, tends the sheep. Mute.
ANDREEA - 15. New to the convent from Iași, Moldova’s capital. Cool and rich.
GHEORGHE - 18. Vlad’s brother and Teodora’s betrothed. Quintessential 17th century fuckboy.
VLAD - Cristina’s husband. Used to be a successful blacksmith, but now he just sits there and drools. Or so you think.
CRISTINA - 25. Teodora’s sister. Very pregnant.
SORA PAISIA - 32. Mother Superior, in charge of the convent and worried about feeding everyone.
TATAIE - 45. Teodora and Cristina’s father. Loves to drink.
Romanian Swear Words
Întinde-mi-aş chiloţii pe crucea mă-tii – I’ll hang my underwear on your mother’s cross
Fută-te-ar Sfinţii până apari în Noul Testament – I hope the Saints fuck you until you come up in the New Testament
Rahat cu ochi – Shit with eyes
Curvă – Whore
Pizda mă-tii – Your mother’s vagina (actually the c word)