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Drama The New Stage

What Happened after Nora Left Her Husband

Elfriede Jelinek, stage director Michal Dočekal

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Translation: Jitka Jílková
Stage director: Michal Dočekal
Sets: Martin Chocholoušek
Costumes: Kateřina Štefková
Music: Miloš Orson Štědroň
Dramaturgy: Daria Ullrichová
Motion cooperation: Petra Hauerová

The Nobel Prize winner writes provocatively and her relentless criticism even surpasses that of Ibsen. (Two of the plays Jelinek links up to are contained in the title.) Above all, she conjectures the story of Nora. As the author has herself said, she considers Nora an extremely negative character. Although Nora extricated herself from her marriage, she continues, like a squirrel, hopping around seeking to please men, without understanding any of the principles of the civilisation dictated by males. (Those who exploit more effectively, compete more effectively, is how her algorithm could read.) Jelinek sends Nora to the 1930s, the years of economic crisis with war on the horizon. As Václav Bělohradský would put it, it is an apposite metaphor of the time of the deified growth of Growth.

“The stage director Dočekal has had the great idea of underlining the interpretation in the slapstick style with musical numbers, which has resulted in a sort of a play with songs and another ironic and burlesque level. Miloš Orson Štědroň composed music blending jazz-rock and contemporary classical music, with the female chorus in particular imbuing the situations with a peculiar mocking strain. And its direct involvement in the course of events on the stage, initially in the form of workers and socialist union members, who amusingly vanish as housewives in well-creased blouses, worked splendidly too.” (Jana Machalicka, Lidove noviny)

“Kateřina Winterová dominates the New Stage as Nora, who has just left her husband. In Michal Dočekal’s inspired and thoroughly elaborate production, the actress presents a similarly sophisticated performance. Her Nora has many positions. Winterová is sure of herself in all of them and is able to change between them abruptly. Her performance is truly exceptional among those given on Czech stages.” (Jana Paterova, jury chairwoman)

National Theatre Drama will present this performance at the International Theatre Festival Mess in Sarajevo, at the National Theatres’ Meeting in Warsaw and at Bogotá Latin American Festival.

Photo: Lucie Jansch

Duration of the performance: 2 hours and 20 minutes, 1 intermission

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November 2014

December 2014