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  • 10 / 24 / 2006

Theater Festival
I won't write down that everybody here speaks of theater around the clock, theres no need to exaggerate.

The citizens of Camagüey live their everyday lives. The XI National Theater Festival is, simply, another event in this sleepless city; a happy, event, not everyone have the chance to see up to five proposals each day.

In a crowded Principal Theater, the group Buendía presented Charenton, montage of Flora Lauten from the text Marat Sade, of Peter Weiss. Here theres a strong nominee to the Great Award of the Festival.

Lauten and Raquel Carrió (in charge of the dramaturgy and research) have lit an unusual idea of the shining and terrible days of French Revolution: a deep text, a dramatic structure without dead ends, a disturbing choreography, a suggesting musical work... But the greatest poetry is in the image, in the spelling plasticity of the stage. Charenton is an atmosphere.

Its a shame that such large scenario like the Principal Theater little or nothing has to do with the original conception of the montage. In the small Havanian church transformed into theater and which works as headquarters to the company, Charenton finds its right space: that church, more than a stage, is scenography. The public is too far from the actors, we hopelessly lost a large amount of the energy that encourages them, of the fascinating eloquence of expression. Too much space among the decoration elements. But theres evidence that good shows can endure more than one adversity.

And speaking of first-class shows: how convincing the visit to Ibsen of Argos Theater. Its version of Stockman, an Enemy of the People, builds bridges to nowadays reality without betraying the original spirit of the text. When recreating classic, Carlos Celdrán is used to shatter formalities, but he respects the vital meaning. For some this might be a little moralizing even didactic the speech in this opportunity: we must listen to many accusations through the show; but Stockmans ethical dilemma is over a century old, basically, Stockman himself nowadays. We have changed very little, people; the truth usually continues inconveniencing, setting us uncomfortable.

And here are the features of Argos Theater: the elegance and sobriety, the economy of resources, the coherence and originality. We applaud an amazing Alexis Díaz de Villega who knows how to tell everything with the sincerity of someone who doesn't repeat a text again. And also the great actor Pancho García. Its remarkable how the dialogue converges between two actors with so different ways of interpreting.

We have attended two stagings that deal with the contradictions of the Cuban family: Remains in the Night, of the Theatrical Study Macubá (Santiago de Cuba); and The Heirs of Time, of D ' Morón Theater (Ciego de Ávila).

The first one belongs to a version of a classic of the national dramaturgy, The night of Murderers, of José Triana. Starting from the constant features of Macubá (that inquiry in the ritual essence, that particular ornamentation of the expression); its achieved an interesting performing exercise. But, at times, one would claim less style. The text, in itself, it already has a meaningful symbolic dimension, it doesn't help a lot recharge it with so much emphasis in saying and slowing down the movement.

Less satisfied we walk out of The Heirs of Time, written and directed by Orlando Concepción González. Although, its necessary to recognize him, the staging is able to catch the publics attention. Its a tragicomedy of manners with clear references to the classic of the genre.

But its cacophonic, somewhat sleepless. It strays with little experience on grooved roads. Highly unfortunate the conception of some characters. Yet, we find substantial the performance of the main actress, Noidys Pardo Casillo: although largely in a single-line (something to be blamed on the direction of actors), we are clearly before an excellent comedian.

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