Voices From Ukraine 3


With so many terrible problems in the world, we know it’s easy to forget the ongoing struggle in Ukraine and the incredible courage the Ukrainian people have shown in their heroic resistance to Putin’s brutal invasion. Won’t you show your support by coming to City Garage this Thursday? We’ll be doing a staged reading of a new full-length play from Ukrainian poet and author Valeriy Puzik, “Ghosts in Branches.” Valeriy has been fighting on the front lines since the beginning of the conflict in 2014. He provides a true, first-person perspective on Ukraine’s existential struggle for survival—but one laced with poetry, deep spirituality, and an aching longing for peace. It’s our third installment in our ”Voices From Ukraine” series as part of the Worldwide Ukrainian Play Reading Project, a benefit to raise humanitarian relief for Ukraine. One hundred percent of the proceeds go to groups working on the ground in Ukraine. Please come. Any amount of donation is welcome and can be made either in advance sort at the door.


Frederique & Charles

Voices from Ukraine 3

The Worldwide Ukrainian Play Readings Project at City Garage

“Ghosts in Branches” by Valeriy Puzik

Translated by John Freedman with Natalia Bratus

A staged reading to support humanitarian aid for Ukraine.

Thursday, June 6, 2024 @ 8:00pm

As Russia’s brutal war enters its third year since the full-scale invasion, City Garage will be presenting a staged reading of a new, full-length play from Ukrainian author and poet Valeriy Puzik “Ghosts in Branches.” This is the third in a series of readings City Garage has presented as part of the Worldwide Ukrainian Play Readings Project in support of humanitarian aid to the people of Ukraine.

Featuring: Nathan Dana Aldrich, Angela Beyer, Carter Calahan, Carey Cannata, Devin Davis-Lorton, Romy Evans, David E. Frank, Liam Galaz Howard, Gifford Irvine, Ryan Nebreja, Ralph Radebaugh, Shane Weikel.

Directed by: Charles A. Duncombe

Click here to attend and/or donate

About the Play:

A small group of Ukrainian soldiers shelters in the remains of a hut on the front lines of the war. Some are young, some are older; they are ordinary men, who have left behind ordinary lives to do something none of them ever imagined: fight a war. In their daily struggle to survive they joke, gripe, fantasize about distant love ones, fend off boredom, hunger, loneliness, deadly shelling and drone attacks, go on night raids, and endure the constant thought of death: not if it will come, but simply when. In this haunting, beautiful piece, Ukrainian poet, writer, and filmmaker Valeriy Puzik takes a gently ironic view of deadly events: grimly comic, deeply humane, injecting lovely surreal fantasies that express a longing for peace, seeking shards of light and sources of hope in the grimmest of situations.

About the Author:

Valeriy Puzik is a Ukrainian artist, writer, and director. He was born in 1987 in Telizhyntsi in the Khmelnytskyi region. His paintings and artwork have been shown in exhibitions and museums in Ukraine as well as internationally. Puzik has actively fought in the war with Russia on the front lines from 2014 to the present. He is the author of numerous books. Bezdomni psi (2018; tr: Homeless Dogs) and Monolit (2018) are collections of short prose for which Puzik has won several awards. With his comrades, he made a short documentary called Ceasefire, whose plot unfolds in the early days of the conflict, when a ceasefire was announced in eastern Ukraine on February 15, 2015. The film received a special jury prize at the 86 festival of the Palma Piwnoci (tr: Palm of the North) national documentary competition.Puzik’s book Ja baciv jogo zhywym, mertvym i znowu zhywym (2020; tr: I Saw Him Alive, Dead and Alive Again) was one of the top 20 Ukrainian prose books of 2020, according to the Ukrainian PEN Club. He is the screenwriter of the miniseries Blindash (tr: Blindage), based on real experiences of Ukrainian soldiers of the anti-terrorist operation in Donbas. Puzik has worked as a journalist for various online media and newspapers. He has won numerous literary competitions, such as Smoloskip, Granoslov, and Novela po-ukrainski, and was awarded, among others, the Olesia Ulyanenko Literary Prize. Puzik wrote his first play, Ghost in Branches, in 2024.

About the Project:
The Worldwide Ukrainian Play Readings Project, organized and supervised by writer/translator John Freedman, has been raising humanitarian aid for the people of Ukraine since the full-scale invasion began. To date, there have been more than 580 performances of 170 texts by 60 writers in 35 countries and 20 languages. Attendees are asked to make a minimum donation of $10 but encouraged to give more. 100% of proceeds will be distributed to charities working on the ground in Ukraine.

We Need You for Our $15,000 Pledge Campaign!

Won’t you help us match the generous pledge one of our anonymous donors recently made? Thanks to the people below, we now have $1,300 toward the $15,000 we need to raise by the end of the summer. Join them and help us get there by your gift, large or small.

Help us get to the $15,000 we need to raise!

Our grateful thanks to these donors:
Gustav Vintas
Martha Duncan
Lindsie Carlsen
Tom Patchett

Donate Today!

The Writers Workshop at City Garage — New Online Sessions Begin July 6th!

The Writers Workshop is now happening online! Sign up now and get 50% off! Are you working on a play, a one-person show, a screenplay, or a piece of fiction and want help pushing it forward? Develop it in the Writers Workshop at City Garage. Get guidance, feedback, story analysis, and support in our weekly sessions. Reserve your spot by July 4th and get 50% off your first month! Click here for more information.

Frederique 👠👠, Charles, and everyone at City Garage

Archie says Thank you!