Philippine Daily Inquirer

Fil-Am heiress performs in socially conscious play on July 14


INTERNATIO­NAL ACTRESS Leslie Lewis-Sword, elder daughter of Fil-Am Loida Nicolas-Lewis, a native of Sorsogon, Bicol, and the late African-American billionair­e Reginald Francis Lewis, together with executive producer Roger S. Chua, bring to Manila “Miracle in Rwanda,” a one-woman show she created and will perform starting July 14 through July 22 at Insular Life Theatre in Makati.

It is based on the true story of Rwandan genocide survivor Immaculée Ilibagiza. After premiering in Naples, Florida, and a triumphant Soho run in New York City in 2007, the one-hour play inspired a world tour that has spanned 17 cities and five continents and generated critical acclaim at each stop.

Lewis-Sword traveled to Rwanda with Ilibagiza to develop this unique piece of theater in which she plays “various roles, brilliant and compelling, effortless­ly switching from one to the next...” according to Epoch Times. She has performed “Miracle in Rwanda” over 100 times. Her work has been nominated for an Amnesty Internatio­nal Freedom Expression Award, an Audele award for best solo performanc­e, and honored by numerous prestigiou­s festivals.

Lewis-Sword made her New York debut as Dorothy Dandridge in a solo show at the National Black Theater of Harlem. Other credits include co-starring with Billy Zane in the short film “Starving Hysterical Naked,” a biopic about the Beat Generation Writers. She graduated from Harvard University cum laude, and received her MFA in Acting from UCLA’s Department of Theater. Lewis-Sword and her husband have adopted two children from Rwanda, and she divides her time between NYC, Los Angeles and Vancouver.

For its Philippine premiere, “Miracle in Rwanda’s” major sponsors include Oscar J. Hilado of Phinma Foundation Inc. and Mariposa Foundation Inc. and Rene “Butch” S. Meily of PLDT-Smart Foundation Inc., together with the various civil society groups who will mount the show to raise funds for their non-profit projects.

Among them are Dodie Lucas for Sambayan Educationa­l Foundation of St.Theresa’s College (SEFI); distinguis­hed woman lawyer Katrina Legarda for Women’s Lawyers Circle (WILOCI); art patron Tessie Luz for Catholic Women’s Club (CWC); General Jimmy de los Santos for UP Cooperativ­e/UP Vanguard; Angel Nacino for Manila Chamber Orchestra Foundation; Carmen Arceno of Inner Wheel Club of Makati Edsa; Chito Liban and wife Maribel for Couples for Christ Foundation for Family and Life, Novaliches district; Danny Dolor for Confradia de la Immaculada Concepcion; and Ronald D. Acolola Jr. for St.Pius X Seminary Alumni Associatio­n Manila Chapter.

For tickets and inquiries, call or text Liza (0919-4103770) or Charmane (0929-5867746). For more informatio­n, visit www.miracleinr­

 ??  ?? LESLIE Lewis-Sword
LESLIE Lewis-Sword

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