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For the first time in Romania, “Fathers and Sons” - a show with a strikingly current topicality

30 April 2022
Selection of performances and structure of the FNT 32 21 September 2022
For the 32nd edition of the National Theatre Festival, two productions of the "I.L. Caragiale" National Theatre in Bucharest have been selected: Fathers and Sons by Brian Friel, dramatization based on Turgheniev's novel, translated and directed by Vlad Massaci, set design by Adrian Damian, costumes by Luiza Enescu, scenic movement by Florin Fieroiu, lighting design by Cristian Șimon, video design by Constantin Șimon and The Seagull by A.P. Chekhov, translated by Raluca Rădulescu, directed by Eugen Jebeleanu, set design by Velica Panduru, director of photography Marius Panduru, music by Rèmi Billardon. The FNT 2022 curators' argument - Mihaela Michailov, Oana Cristea Grigorescu, Călin Ciobotari. The curatorial team of FNT 2022 has selected for this edition exclusively shows produced in the previous season, 2021-2022. From 1 June to 1 September 2022, we screened over 100 performances from across the country, physically and online, proposed by state and independent theatres, to which we added international performances. UNITER invited theatres to submit two proposals for viewing (outnumbered in some cases). Of course, we also included the shows that each curator had seen over the past season, even if they were not proposed by the theatres. The concept of the festival Fragile Borders. Fluid Histories, announced after the acceptance of the curatorial mandate, guided us in structuring the program that follows relevant approaches and aesthetic trends in the Romanian theatre of today. The two categories of the program propose performances and performative discourses that invite possible interpretations of the concept, without it becoming an exclusive criterion. We thought it was important to extend the interest in theatre performances in general to the area of performative approaches, in order to respond to a variety of spectacular proposals that are becoming more and more specifically articulated. The National Theatre Festival is produced by the UNITER Association - The Romanian Theatre Union. Co-producer: Bucharest City Hall through ARCUB – The Cultural Centre of the Municipality of Bucharest. FNT is a cultural project funded by the Ministry of Culture. Partner: The Romanian Cultural Institute. More details on: www.fnt.ro    
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Premiere at NTB - Exile 17 September 2022
About the exile and the relationship of anger and love with Romania - in the new premiere at NTB, by Alexandra Badea I.L. Caragiale National Theatre in Bucharest announces the premiere of Exile, a play written and directed by Alexandra Badea - a show about recent history, also inspired by the author-director's own biography! The premiere will take place on September 17th, 2022, at 7 pm, in the "Ion Caramitru" Hall. "I have long wanted to talk about exile and the relationship with Romania, a relationship of anger and love, which we all feel, about the desire to leave, the desire to return, the impossibility of adapting here. But also about inherited things - education, the blockages we get from family and school". With the play "Exile" - Alexandra Badea reconstructs, in a non-linear chronology, the image of a family made up of three generations, recalling, fragment by fragment, the experiences that marked its existence: communism, post-communism and, especially, the exile. "It is a play more about an inner exile of the characters, about the inability to be free, to break away from the past, to discover and assume their identity, to get in touch with their deepest nature, with their most hidden desires. We in Romania still carry the trauma of the education we were given at school and in our families during the dictatorship. This is something that is found in all people who have lived in dictatorships or have been brought up by parents who have gone through this experience. There is no point being born in a free country if your parents lived in fear”. This is how author Alexandra Badea defines her intentions. The events recounted are a pretext for pondering on topics as diverse as the search for identity, history, adaptation and guilt. Alexandra Badea's characters, whether settled in France or remaining in the country, discover in themselves a hidden uneasiness, the suspicion of a betrayal in the family past, search for the point where it all started and begin from there a path of understanding and rebuilding a new life. "For this play I dreamed of a cast that would allow characters to develop over time, to see their evolution from 20 to 50 years. The diversity of the NTB company allows this, it is perhaps the only theatre in Romania where I could develop such a complex project", the director confesses. And here are the actors who respond to this challenge: Ada Galeș, Emilian Oprea, Cosmina Olariu, Florin Călbăjos, Crina Semciuc, Emilian Mârnea, Ana Ciontea, Irina Movilă, Diana Dumbravă, Mihai Călin, Alexandru Potocean, Richard Bovnoczki, Liviu Lucaci, Ionuț Toader, Aylin Cadîr, Vitalie Bichir. Cosmin Florea is responsible for the set design. Original music, Călin Țopa. Born and educated in Romania, Alexandra Badea chose a different path from her family's at a very young age to see her dreams, quests and aspirations fulfilled. Over the last 20 years, through a sustained theatrical activity in France, she has established herself as one of the most interesting voices of young playwrights. Alexandra Badea is currently one of France's most powerful directing and artistic voices. Theatre and film director, playwright, novelist, associate director of the National Theatre "La Colline" in Paris, Alexandra was born in 1980 in Bucharest, but has been living and creating in France since 2003. She is a graduate of UNATC Bucharest, theatre direction section, class of Professor Valeriu Moisescu. After graduating, she went to Paris to study at the International Centre for Theatre Studies at the Sorbonne Nouvelle University (Sorbonne Nouvelle), where she did a master's degree with George Banu. Her first plays, Mode d'emploi, Contrôle d'identité and Burnout were published in 2009 by L'Arche publishing house. Pulvérisés, the triptych Je te regarde, Europe connexion, Extrêmophile, her first novel, Zone d'amour prioritaire, will follow, as well as other volumes of plays: A la trace, Celle qui regarde le monde, and the trilogy Points de non-retour. For Pulvérisés she was awarded the Grand Prize for Dramatic Literature for 2013, a prize under the aegis of the French National Theatre Centre, and the jury's motivation reads as follows: „ With this surprisingly constructed play, Alexandra Badea proposes a series of portraits and x-rays the general system of globalization and the mechanisms of globalization”. The play, which was also staged on radio by France Culture (Alexandre Planck), is presented as a reading performance at the Sibiu Theatre Festival and is staged in Bucharest by Andrei Măjeri with the Apollo 111 Company, under the title Pulverizare. Alexandra is also the author of radio fictions for the France Culture radio station, including Red line, Mondes, Europe connexion. Her plays written in French are staged under her own direction or under the signature of stage directors such as Frédéric Fishbach, Jonathan Mitchel, Anne Theorn, etc., in major theatres in France, but are also translated into several languages and performed throughout Europe, as well as in Brazil, Argentina, Canada, USA, Taiwan. In 2019, she was invited by the Avignon Festival to create the second part of the trilogy Points de non-retour (Quais de Seine), presented in its full 7-hour form in 2022 at the Théâtre National de la Colline. In 2021, she published her second novel, Tu marches au bord du monde, with Les equateurs publishing house. He wrote several screenplays, Solitudes, directed by Liova Jedliecki, which was awarded several prizes and mentions at the Clermont-Ferrand, Barcelona, Alès film festivals, and also directed the awards winning short films 24 heures and Le monde qui nous perd. In 2016 she was awarded the title of Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres by the French Ministry of Culture. In 2018 she wrote her first play in Romanian, Perfect compus, which she staged with the actors of the National Theatre "Radu Stanca", thus returning after an absence of eight years in Romanian theatre. The performance was presented at the Sibiu International Theatre Festival. During this 25th edition, Alexandra Badea received the "Iulian Vișa" award, which is given to a director of the young generation, as a token of appreciation for her "unique artistic voice". In 2021 she returns to Sibiu to stage the play On the other side of the world, as part of a European project. With "Exile", a text also written in Romanian, Alexandra Badea returns to the National Theatre from Bucharest after an absence of 14 years, after having staged here, in 2008, at Sala Atelier, the play Complexul România by Mihaela Michailov, winner of the UNITER award for the best play of 2006. The next performances of "Exile" will take place on September 18 and October 2nd, 2022, 7 pm at the Ion Caramitru Hall. Tickets are on sale at the NTB box office and online at www.tnb.ro.   Translated by Andreea Codrea-Boeriu
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Premier of The Machine. The Musical 10 September 2022
The European premiere of Alexander Hausvater's exciting and comic "noir" musical opens the season at NTB. A co-production of the "I.L. Caragiale" National Theatre from Bucharest with CREAS Association* In the opening of the new season 2022 - 2023, NTB presents, in preview, on 10 and 11 September 2022, at the Studio Hall, at 7.30 pm, a brand new show by director Alexander Hausvater: The Machine. The Musical. The show is based on Elmer Rice's 1923 play The Adding Machine, considered at the time "the most original and intelligent play ever written by an American, the most hard-hitting, yet the most visionary play about modern society, ever seen on Broadway." In 2007, Joshua Schmidt transformed the play into a musical, giving the original text, as Michael Billington put it, "a comic and joyous wildness", supported by a soundtrack that blends many styles, from choral pieces to pop rock, from opera to 1920s and 1930s music, with influences from gospel, jazz and rock and roll. A satire on the enslavement of human beings in the machine age, the play presents the life, strange death and then afterlife of a dull accountant, Mr. Zero. When Mr. Zero, a mere cog in the wheel of a business, learns that his work is to be taken over by a machine, he snaps and kills his boss. For the first time in his life, Mr. Zero takes his destiny into his own hands, an act whose consequences will send him to the next world, where he is offered a new chance at love, life and redemption. The performance by Romanian-Canadian director Alexander Hausvater has a profound relevance to today's world where technology, electronic communication and automatization have led to an unsettling conflict between man and his morality. The more modern society has advanced technologically and scientifically, the more the relationship between one human being and another within a community has deteriorated and increasingly falls under the banner of selfishness and materialism. Ultimately, a story about the price of the human soul… The protagonists of this show are exceptional performers, combining acting with music and dance, according to the requirements of this kind of performance: Ioan Andrei Ionescu, Natalia Călin / Oana Berbec, Florentina Țilea / Medeea Marinescu, Istvan Teglas / Petre Ancuța, Tomi Cristin, Monica Davidescu / Iuliana Moise, Fulvia Folosea, Silviu Biriș, Silviu Mircescu, Mihai Munteniță, Daniel Burcea. "The show is meant to be a lesson in song and movement - says Alexander Hausvater. It emphasizes the need for modern man to fight against the temptation of technology in order to reach a deeper understanding of the self, the individual's capabilities and potential. It's a wake-up call. It is an apocalyptic vision. What happens to the protagonist could happen to any of us." Alongside the director and performers, the following contributed to the production of the show: Adina Mastalier - set design, Florin Fieroiu – choreography, Alexandru Burcă - musical direction, Vlad Vedeș - music production, Bogdan Golumbeanu, Ion Vlașcu - Lighting design, Mădălina Ene and Andreea Dobia - musical training. More than two decades ago, Alexander Hausvater staged another masterpiece of the American expressionist drama at the National Theatre, Sophie Treadwell's Machinal. Many of the actors from the cast of Machinal reunite with Alexander Hausvater in this new stage adventure. For over three decades, Hausvater's nonconformist style has broken many patterns both in the Canadian theatre - where he has been perceived as "a volcano full of color, charm and energy" (cf. Lorraine Pintal, Montreal) - and in Romanian theatre. The official premiere of the show will take place at the Studio Hall on September 28, 2022 at 7.30 pm; the tickets for the performances on September 10 and 11, 2022 at 7.30pm are on sale at the National Theatre Box Office and online at www.tnb.ro.   Translated by Andreea Codrea-Boeriu 
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