The Birth Machine


Award-winning playwright Marcia Zanelatto will explore the social and geopolitical history of Brazil through the experience of childbirth over 100 years. Brazil is a vast country of contradictions with a history of economic turbulence, vast growth and democratisation. The diversity of experience of childbirth reflects the schisms in society uncovering the inequality that is still at the heart of the Brazil.

Marcia writes fiction for theatre, television and cinema. She has received several awards including the “Sexuality, Violence and Justice in Favelas Award”, “Seleção Brazil em Cena Award”, and the “Centro Cultural Banco do Brazil for Tempo de Solidão”. Her work was selected by Brazilian Ministry of External Relations for the Bilingual publication Contemporary Brazilian Theatre. In 2015, she received the Prêmio APTR (Theatre Producers Association of Rio de Janeiro Award), in the category Best Author 2014, for the play DESALINHO.

Marcia Zanelatto's blog posts

October 21, 2016

Writer interview: Marcia Zanelatto

B!RTH’s Creative Director, Emma Callander speaks to Brazillian writer Marcia Zanelatto. How did you begin to write plays? In my hometown, there was almost no theatre. The first time I saw a play, I was about 14 or 15, but I started writing poetry at 11. In my house, I had no books but my […]

October 21, 2016

Marcia Zanelatto: researching ‘The Birth Machine’

On 11th May 2016, I crossed the city of Rio de Janeiro in an Uber towards one of the units of the vast Fiocruz complex, located in one of the access roads to the city – Avenida Brazil – to meet with Maria do Carmo Leal. With a medical degree and PhD in Public Health […]

October 21, 2016

Marcia Zanelatto: Zika virus and microcephaly

Brazillian writer Marcia Zanelatto recently spoke to Professor Debora Diniz of the University of Brazil about Zika virus and microcephaly. MZ – Firstly, I would like to know if you really think microcephaly to be solely caused by the Zika virus or if you’ve considered the possibility of the link between microcephaly and the use of pesticides or other […]

July 14, 2016

Creative process: Márcia Zanelatto (Brazil)

Brazillian writer Márcia Zanelatto gives an insight into the creative process and research that is forming the work she is producing for B!RTH. “On the day you were born…” My dramaturgical process aims to create two moments. The first one wishes to bring to the stage a brief history of child birth and labour in Brazil, […]

< Back to plays