Acclaimed Portuguese Canadian playwright Elaine Ávila’s new play, Fado: The Saddest Music in the World, is a tale of love and ghosts set in the back alleys and brothels of old Lisbon. Part concert, part theatre, the story of a young woman confronting her country’s fascist past and her own identity is interwoven with the heartbreaking national music of Portugal known as fado, which means “fate. ”
Playing sold-out crowds in Vancouver and Victoria in 2018 and 2019, Fado was honoured on the Playwrights Guild of Canada’s Sure Fire List (the Top Twenty-Three Most Producible Plays in Canada by Women) and selected as one of the Top Unproduced Latinx Plays in the U. S. by Fifty Playwrights. Fado won the Award for Favourite Musical in Victoria with B. C.’s own beloved Sara Marreiros playing the ghost of Amália Rodrigues, the Queen of Fado.
Elaine Ávila’s plays are produced in Central America, Europe, the U.S., Canada, and Australia. Her Best New Play Awards include: Jane Austen, Action Figure (Festival de los Cocos, Panamá City), Lieutenant Nun (Victoria Critics Circle), and Café a Brasileira (Disquiet International Literary Program in Lisbon). Elaine has served as the playwright-in-residence at Pomona College in Los Angeles, Quest University Canada, and Western Washington University; as the Endowed Chair and Head of the M.F.A. Program in Dramatic Writing at the University of New Mexico; and founder of the LEAP Playwriting Program at the Arts Club Theater in Vancouver. She has taught in universities from Portugal to Tasmania, China to Panamá, and is the co-founder of the International Climate Change Theatre Action, involving fifty playwrights, two hundred venues, and twelve thousand audience members worldwide. The 2019 Fulbright Scholar at the University of the Azores,
Elaine lives in New Westminster, British Columbia, with her musician-teacher husband and her sixteen-year-old, a core leader of Sustainabiliteens.