Oana Maria Cajal

Oana Maria Cajal was born in Bucharest, Romania.  She received her M.F.A. degree in Theatre and Cinema Studies from Bucharest’s Institute of Theatre Arts and Cinematography. 

In 1980, upon receiving a grant from the American Critics Association, Oana immigrated to the U.S.  While attending the Ph.D. Theatre Criticism program at New York’s City University, Oana turned to playwriting.  She then moved to California where she received her M.F.A. in playwriting (University of California San Diego).

In 1986 her first play, Eastern European Tetralogy, was nominated by the San Diego Theatre Critics Circle as best new play.

Oana is a recipient of the National Endowment for the Arts playwriting Fellowship and a Fulbright scholar.

In the summer of 1990, Oana traveled back to Romania where she experienced firsthand the violent events that occurred in Bucharest on the 13th, 14th and 15th of June. This experience gave rise to her play The Almond Seller, which premiered at Baca-Downtown in New York in 1991.

Oana is an alumna of New Dramatists and a member of Dramatists Guild of America. She is a member of Writers Union of Romania, of UNITER Romanian Theatre Union (UNITER) and of Playwrights‘ Workshop Montreal.

Berlin,Berlin has received productions from the Mandell Weiss Center for Performing Arts (La Jolla, Ca.), Workhouse Theatre in New York and Brandeis University.

The Inconvenience of Being Alive was produced at Lincoln Center, Directors Lab in 1996.

In 1997 The Enduring Legend of Marinka Pinka and Tommy Atommi was part of SummerNite festival in Chicago in 1999.

In 1998 Oana wrote Labyrinth a screenplay commissioned  by Fox Searchlight Pictures. 

In 2003, The Long Journey To Whereto, a Theatrical Puzzle, opened at Perishable Theatre, Providence, R.I.

 Waiting for Godot to Leave was produced at Immigrants Theatre Project, in New York.  

Exchange at Café Mimosa  was  workshoped  at the American Repertory Theatre in Cambridge, produced at the Workhouse in New York at  The Perishable Theatre and at Mercury Players Theatre, Madison, W.I.

In recent years, Oana’s creative expression returned to graphic arts. She published SOLENODON, a selection of Picto-Poems in which words and  graphics coexist in deep symbiosis. An exhibition of the graphics in the volume was presented at Cinema du Parc, Montreal, 2007.

2011 - EXHIBITION: POSTERS  FOR UNWRITTEN  PLAYS,  Seagram Gallery, Centaur Theatre,  Montreal.

2012 - Oana’s play ULTIMUL PACT(THE LAST PACT), inspired by the love story between Georges Clemenceau and Marguerite Baldensperger was voted  by Romanian Theatre Union (UNITER) “THE BEST ROMANIAN  PLAY of  2011”. The radio phonic production premieres October 13, 2014,  in Bucharest.

2013 - EXHIBITION:  COHEN UPSTAIRS, Centaur Theatre, during the run of the Danish Granhoj Dans production of Dance Me to the End of Love.

 2014 -  EXHIBITION: WORKING WITH FENNARIO, STOP ALL WARS is presented at Centaur Theatre, in concert with the production of  Fennario’s Motherhouse. The exhibition stands for ground breaking paradigm of  interaction between theatre making and graphic arts.

Oana’s screenplay, POARTA ALBA” (THE WHITE GATE), was part of the winning project of  “The Film Project Contest”,  National Center of Cinematography, Romania. The film is produced and directed by renowned film director, Nicolae Margineanu. ( premieres October 17, 2014).

Presently, Oana resides in Montreal with her husband Stefan, her daughter Annya, and their pets: Peticha, Dr.Seuss, and Josephine.


Press release, La MaMa Galleria, New York - http://lamama.org/la-galleria-posters-for-unwritten-plays/

Picto Video: THE BOOK OF POSTERS FOR UNWRITTEN PLAYS - https://youtu.be/Q_QKGRmyg34

NOMINATION BEST SCREENPLAY GOPO AWARDS (Romanian Oscar) -  http://www.filmneweurope.com/news/romania-news/item/110056-q-e-d-leads-gopo-nominations

AWARD, "THE LAST PACT", BEST PLAY OF 2011, UNITER, ROMANIA -http://www.oanacajal.ca/documents/ICR%20NY/ICR%20NY.htm

Picto Video: WORKING WITH FENNARIO, THE EXHIBITION, Centaur Theatre, Montreal -  http://youtu.be/iDNaG58sSx4