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Saturday, December 3, 2016

Avignon finished pieces of war


Today in Avignon closes the 70th edition of the festival. Special events are not provided and no awards will also be. Ridiculous vanity fair is not included in the plans of the oldest theatre forum since its inception — since 1946, when Jean Vilar proposed the idea of a democratic theatrical meetings in an old Provencal town. The current Director of the Avignon festival, Olivier PI tries to observe the tradition. From Avignon — observer “MK”.


photo: Marina Raikin

Philip Girard.

In Avignon, Olivier PI travels on the bike, not sitting in the commanding chair, and works wherever it is most convenient. Sat near press box and writes something. For PI, Director, playwright and poet, is the third festival, the following will be the last: here the Director is appointed for four years, and this is a serious state post. Wanted Olivier or not, but the program this summer he had a clear socio-political connotation. Whatever shows, in which genre they may all say (and some shouting) about the monstrous problems that swept the world.

He PI for the festival has prepared a special performance of “Aeschylus, plays war. It’s being played in three kilometers from the town, in the Chartreuse, an old convent, whose majestic simplicity and beauty silently dictate a certain style. I catch myself thinking that in these powerful walls of stone, under these sonorous vaults with invisible chimeras, gardens, and galleries connecting them, I least I would like to see something of today’s life, with street signs besides the vague embodiment and performance. Place, you know, oblige.

A place for Aeschylus chose a marvelous one from outside the monastery, where for lack of the wall offers a breathtaking view: the high sky with a quick swallow’s flight, the high wall of the adjacent Abbey of Sant Andre. Viewers put bifrontal, and between them is rather narrow black platform for heroes four plays of Aeschylus performed by only three actors. More than anything — and lean on nowhere to hide nothing. Even if the props kind — and that is not provided. In such circumstances, the actors play five hours, and the stage — three.

What exactly was ancient Greek theatre? As played Aeschylus, father of tragedy? As I watched and listened to? It is known that he started at night and ended at dawn. There came to us the word “catharsis”, which means one thing: the ecstasy of what he saw, the shock of game of actors, Holy, on the limit of the senses, to an incredibly high degree. Without this Greek tragedy would not be tragedy, but do not understand anything. However, after the experience with tears and heartbeat of the audience suggested something easy, unrestrained, frivolous.

Olivier PI tried to read Aeschylus, too, on a very high note — and it’s clear from the first scene of the first piece, Prometheus. In General, in one performance he brought four shilovskih text — Prometheus bound, “Petitioner”, “Seven against Thebes” and “the Persians”. Four pieces for 45 minutes with two 20 minute and one hour intervals.

Olivier PI about his play: “This theatre, the most ancient exist in the Mediterranean space and asks about the foundations of democracy. The madness of power, the place of women in society, the refuge, the memory of the dead, death, the curse of the gods, Aeschylus speaks of the Ancient world as he could talk about this.”


photo: Marina Raikin

On a black podium — three artists. Playing heroes, of gods, kings, the elderly, the crowd. Expressive voice without any miking sound powerful. Stingy on maneuvers scenes (Yes, there is especially and unfold). Monologues, dialogues, eye-to-eye or sometimes facing the audience. One unplanned natural paint, which relieves tension of the moment is that a couple of pigeons, who suddenly and brazenly takes wing from under the arches and panic fluttering wings, and then flies to the opposite wall. Judging by the deep “Hur-Hur”, these lovebirds — love. And people had that on the podium? War. Bloody and merciless, with countless victims. So it was, is and will be?..

And what is especially interesting to observe this high-style games, offered today to the public, unusual for her. “Yes, it’s just Kheraskov some” — I think. Three gorgeous actor tear the soul exist at the limit of the senses, and the audience — in the position of not including: arms cross, legs stretched — contemplate. Although after each piece pop with enthusiasm. But, on the other hand, is out of date the existence of much more interesting artists of modern nevnyatitsy.

I must say that the actors — with a rich texture and (importantly) distinct roles. The youngest — Frederic Le Sacripan (Frédéric Le Sacripan) — neurotic, with fine bone and curly, like from chemo, hair (and maybe yours?). And the look of a madman is he, Prometheus. Older — a very famous artist, with whom the PI has worked on many productions, Philippe Girard (Girard Philippe, not to be confused with Philip Gerard). The role of a villain, from whose face the eyes do not tear. Face hard and eyes light blue, deep set. These are the husky from ice point of view personally, I have the creeps. Finally the actress, Gerstmayer Mireille (Mireille Herbstmeyer) — a middle-aged, bony, high. Noble widow, but with a more rustic face. And in the eyes of sorrow splashing, when she talks about the fallen, not the living

Sat and thought: how nice that Olivier PI from Aeschylus not moved a single step, without searching for new meanings, is proving to be false. And that would have turned the banality of the ordinary.

Self closing 70-th festival d’avignon will take place on Sunday evening in two locations — on campus, where will light superzvezdy DJ PON and no less famous group of “General electric”. And in the Honorary courtyard of the papal Palace, under the starry sky will make an amazing soprano from Quebec Lin Fortin, accompanied by the national orchestra.

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