A Taste of Empire

A culinary exploration of global food domination and the conquest for our appetites

Written and Performed by Jovanni Sy
Original Production directed by Guillermo Verdecchia
Video Design by David Yee

We are what we eat. But where does it come from? How does it get here? A wacky and fun culinary exploration of global food domination and the conquest for our appetites.

Everything we eat tells a story. While cooking a traditional Filipino dish in real time, writer/performer Jovanni Sy takes us on an entertaining and thought-provoking trip through history as he weaves stories of conquest, imperialistic desires, and colonialism through the construction (and deconstruction) of the Rellenong Bangus. Audiences will immerse themselves in the tantalizing aromas of a kitchen, and a tasting plate is served at the conclusion of the piece. A Taste of Empire is truly a feast for the mind and the palate.

With support from the Centre for Sustainable Food Systems @ UBC Farm, the Liu Institute for Global Issues @ UBC, and the UBC Faculty of Land and Food Systems.

Jovanni Sy

Writer, Creator, Performer

Jovanni is a director, playwright, and actor. Originally from Toronto, he moved to the Lower Mainland in 2012 and was the Artistic Director of Gateway Theatre for seven seasons.

His plays include A Taste of Empire, Nine Dragons (Jessie Award), and The Five Vengeances (which he will direct with Affair of Honor). Jovanni is currently writing a new play for Vertigo Theatre and co-writing Salesman in China with Leanna Brodie (Stratford Festival/Banff/PTC).

This fall, Jovanni will start a new adventure as an MFA candidate at the University of Calgary.

Jovanni Sy
Writer, Creator, Performer

Pedro Chamale

Sous-sous chef

Pedro is a Latinx-Canadian theatre artist born and raised in Chetwynd, British Columbia. He received his BFA in Theatre Performance from SFU. He then went on to form rice & beans theatre with Derek Chan. Pedro was the Artistic Resident at Neworld Theatre in 2014, the guestcurator of the 2018 rEvolver Festival and was one of the playwrights in the 2019 Banff’s Playwrights Lab where he worked on his latest play Made in Canada: an agricultural operetta premiering May 8th 2020 at performance works. Pedro is a director, playwright, performer and theatre jack-of-all-trades. Selected Credits: Anywhere But Here (Electric Company), Selfie, Bull (Rumble Theatre), Chicken Girl, Mis Papás (rice & beans), and Are We There Yet? (Neworld Theatre).

Pedro Chamale
Sous-sous chef

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