This time, it is Albert Camus‘s turn. Díaz is pushing the envelope again in FUNDarte’s presentation of his new production of Camus‘s classic Caligula directed from Teatro El Público of Havana. The show opens at the Colony Theater in Miami Beach on June 14, 15, and 16 at 8:00 p.m.
Here is a video excerpt from Teatro El Público’s Caligula.
Caligula’s obsession with the impossible drags him to the bodies that surround him and that he imagines as slaves to his desires. This performance, following the guidelines per the method that our group has developed with each premiere, corroborates these erotic possibilities. Cross-dressing and sensuality connect the protagonists, breaking down norms of conventional genre to tap into interpretations of masculinity and its boundaries, as well as its formula for desire.This formula includes desire for similar bodies, and reinvents itself through embraces and provocations that Teatro El Público uses not only to offer an irreverent reading of Camus, but also to reveal through audacity the fact that the work’s ideas and characters are still relevant to contemporary times. The work addresses those bodies that play out the wearing of uniforms and garb and who, in their anachronistic games and references to haute couture, see themselves as provocative; revealing them as dangerous mirrors of pleasure beyond limits or possession, explosive both in terms of theater and seduction.
Carlos Díaz has led Teatro El Público since 1992. In an interview for Cuban Art News, it was made clear how this director’s theater intentionally reminds audiences that the classic works by Chekhov, Racine, Williams, Lorca or Sartre have been adapted for Cuban culture, incorporates Cuban language and local color, and speaks directly to a Cuban public that enjoys being provoked.
Since the Trilogy, I think that my interest—and that of many directors and artists who also emerged at that time—was to make audiences reflect on the problems that confront them today. We are talking about how we live every single day, what we want to change, our dreams and frustrations. Perhaps because of the inertia existing at that time, at the beginning of the Special Period in the early 1990s, I had the opportunity to make a more luxurious sort of theater, with productions like La Niñita Querida (The Little Darling, 1996), by Virgilio Piñera, or El público (The Public, 1929-30), by Federico García Lorca. I think that viewers attending our shows at present are the same as in those days, and they have grown with each staging. The public understood the absence, the silence, the way in which theater was or was not done in the most difficult times. So they have decided to continue with us, knowing that we want to relate to them.Now, in our newly remodelled headquarters at the Trianon cinema-theater, we are beginning a new era of revivals and premieres in which we also expect to see those audiences renewed. I always say that the theater must be looked after, cared for, and I mean that. It´s not just a matter of maintaining the building and slapping on a coat of paint from time to time. It’s a matter of taking care of what we do in the theater, and the way in which we position ourselves with the public. I’ve been lucky in that sense: I have an audience that understands what kind of actors work here, what color or atmosphere we’re seeking—an audience that comes to see and knows how to read certain codes. We have formed a Cuban audience, faithful to us. To stop working as we have with those people would be an unforgivable mistake.
- Casa de las Americas announces Mayo Teatral 2012 (repeatingislands.com)
- Caligula, Coliseum – review (thisislondon.co.uk)
- Caligula – review (guardian.co.uk)
- Caligula, at ENO, Seven magazine review (telegraph.co.uk)
- Out in the Tropics, South Florida’s gay performing arts festival, runs July 7-11 at Colony Theatre (miamiherald.typepad.com)
- Caligula’s Bridge (rogueclassicism.com)
- Caligula the Dictator (rogueclassicism.com)
- Roman remains (intermezzo.typepad.com)
- The Facts About Albert Camus (egrejeen.wordpress.com)
- Albert Camus, Introspection and the Social Media Journey (spencerwilson.wordpress.com)
- The Abdication (Book/Ero(t)icomic Epic Aquired, Sometime Last Week) (biblioklept.org)