Through her art Alina Serban shifted the paradigm in Romanian theatre. By using her own Roma voice, based on her own experiences, she shed light into a world and a community that was previously completely vilified, pointing out the bigger problems of racism and anti-Roma structural violence.
As national and international media began to be interested in her one-woman-show “I Declare at My Own Risk”, her plays always served as a counterpoint to the mainstream dehumanizing discourse on Roma people.
Alina created a movement, a space in theatre, and generated public for it. On stage, off stage, she also created video campaigns, anti-racist toolkits for school, participated and/or led public performances, actions, and had her own projects of engaging with young people.
She has committed herself during the last 10 years to create and claim space for Roma stories, being always careful with the symbols used, paying close attention to artistic responsibility to represent Roma people ethically, being mindful to work with spaces and likeminded collaborators. Despite racism and censorship, she was always committed to keeping her integrity, by bringing to the public Roma stories without any othering, without any nods to the white gaze – but rather by finding a way to bring people together and respect the differences.
Soros Arts Fellow (2018-2019) – Open Society Foundations
Producing a revised version of The Great Shame, the first play solely focused on the history of Roma slavery, to shift discriminatory narratives and advocate for the equal rights and treatment of the Roma people.
EEA Grant – Norwegian Cultural Fond for Diversity (2016)
Untold Stories Project
The Untold Stories – Poveşti Nespuse project endeavors to highlight marginalized Roma historical and cultural perspectives that are rarely in the spotlight
Research Grant (2016)
Winner of one the five scholarships granted for the study of Roma Slavery
Agentia Impreuna, Romania
Arts Council England – Research & Development Grant – 2015
Revised version of “I declare at my risk” – Tara Arts production
Roma Culture Program – Open Society Foundations
I declare at my own risk – tour
Roma Culture Program – Open Society Foundations (2008-2009)
Givisarde Paramicea – the first street performance against Roma discrimination
Best Actress Awards
For her performance in Marta Bergman’s “Seule a mon mariage” Alina Serban won:
Best Female Performance at Festival International du Film de Femmes de Salé 2018
Angela Award for Performance at Subtitle European Film Festival 2018
Special Mention for Interpretation at Rome Independent Film Festival 2018
Promoting Roma culture
Official recognition by the Romanian government for promoting Roma culture – 2019
Roma of the Year Award
Roma of the Year Award at the Roma Excellency Gala – The National Centre of Roma Culture in Romania – 2016
"Stories of London" playwriting contest
Winner of Rich Mix – Stories of London playwriting competition with the play “Home” – 2013
"My story, my rights"
Winner of ‘ My story, my rights’ – Amnesty International – 2013
Best Romanian student in the UK
The Best Romanian Student in the UK – The Romanian Embassy – 2012
Winner “Education the second millennium goal” AWARE – EU project – 2010
Video art – Artivism
My existence is resistance (2018)
Directed by Alina Serban
Part of ‘Sukar’ Exhibition, organized by ERIAC at UN, New York
A Roma woman from the past is throwing herself into a well. She can no longer stand the abuse.
A Roma woman from the present is telling her own truth even though her voice is trembling.
A Roma woman from the future is safe. She is giving and receiving love, respect and appreciation.
What Roma kids should know is that they are sons and daughters of survivors.
Our story is not sad. Our story is one of resistance against history.
To my Roma people, in hope of a brighter future. OPRE
One World Romania Human Rights Documentary Festival – Video spot (2018)
Acted in the spot, co-devised for the concept
directed by Alexandru Solomon
Petition: Justice for the Roma survivors of the Holocaust! (2017)
Directed by Alina Serban, concept by Alina Serban
Street Child World Cup, London International Festival of Theatre (2014)
Concept and text by Alina Serban
International Romani Day – Invisible Roma (2013)
Roma Integration Investigation (2011)
by Vlad Petri and Alina Serban
We all need education (2010)
Concept by Alina Serban, directed by Alina Serban
Award-winning actress for “Seule a mon mariage”
Romania’s first Roma woman director
Roma political theatre pioneer since 2009
Do you have a project idea (film/theatre/artivism) and would like to work with me? I would love to find out more, so get in touch!