Agustina Pardini critiques the post-dramatic performance that to tells no story, is set on no stage, and does not distinguish a line between spectators and performers.
Hamlet is dead. No gravity force is apparently needed to hold his body down to Earth. The sky has become an anarchic system: no God to rule, no order to follow. It is time to make it happen, chaos will stir things at least a little. Humans are left alone with their own consciousness, no guide whatsoever, and that precisely coincides with post-dramatic theatre’s fundamentals.
‘Hamlet está muerto. Sin fuerza de gravedad’ is an Austrian play written by Ewald Palmetshofer that has been taken to stage repeatedly for the last two years in the hands of the highly acclaimed director Lisandro Rodriguez. It was first presented in the Festival de Dramaturgia Europa + América 2014.
The play’s unmistakable message emerges within the first ten minutes: humankind is aware of its own advertence and so is art, dramatic art. Such disruptive philosophy is characterised by six splendid actors who perfectly portray a piece whose intention goes far beyond picturing an ordinary conflictual relationship, and much closer to delineating a situation that no longer exists but that has troubled their existence in the past. Thereupon, the explicit aim of this post-dramatic proposal is not to let the audience be followed by a clear textual reality, but actually to create a situational one deprived from the literary manuscript.
Had it not been for Rodriguez’s clear understanding of such Nordic philosophy and the actors’ courage to jump into the unexpected, the play would have been nothing but an ingenious experiment. However, Rodriguez knew that the chance of failure was slim: his singular taste for pioneering creations -which led him to establish his own production studio (Elefante Club de Teatro) and to direct ‘Duros, La mujer puerca’, among others, has always been based on the idea of expanding limits and defying the pre-established order. Luckily, our society is embracing oddity with such regularity that those who have the guts to risk it all and create something new will surely be comforted by the audience and critics.
‘Hamlet esta muerto. Sin fuerza de gravedad’ tells no story, is set on no stage, and does not distinguish a line between spectators and performers. On the contrary, these actors enter the kitchen of a house gently, interact with astonished watchers, and unmask their true selves, because what we see is actually reality. A family tears their hearts apart, there is much pain, but also much love, life is there lying naked. The past is a haunting ghost that asks for revenge, a son confused by the role he has been given in an apparent solid family: a Shakespearean tale after all. We are in 2016 and our troubling issues appear to be always the same. You were not alone after all, Hamlet.
‘Hamlet está muerto. Sin fuerza de gravedad’ is on at Elefante Club, Guardia Vieja 4257, every Wednesday at 9pm. for more information visit their Facebook page.