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ARÉNA THEATRE

The Wild Duck (Henrik Ibsen)

David Šiktanc

Translation: František Fröhlich
Direction: David Šiktanc
Set: Nikola Tempír
Costumes: Juliána Kvíčalová
Music: Ondřej Švandrlík
Dramaturgy: Tomáš Vůjtek

Cast:
Werle, a businessman: Kostas Zerdaloglu
Gregers Werle, his son: Michal Čapka
Old Ekdal: Vladislav Georgiev
Hjalmar Ekdal, his son, a photographer: Josef Kaluža
Gina Ekdalová, Hjalmar‘s wife: Tereza Cisovská
Hedvika, their daughter, aged 14: Zuzana Truplová
Paní Sörbyová, hospodyně továrníka Werleho: Alena Sasínová-Polarczyk
MUDr. Relling, doctor: Petr Panzenberger
Molvik, an experienced theologist: Šimon Krupa
Petterson, Werle’s servant: Petr Pěnkava
1st guest: Petr Panzenberger
2nd guest: Šimon Krupa

Premier: 22th October 2016

The Wild Duck Henrik Ibsen’s classic play is presented here by the Aréna chamber theatre from Ostrava, three times the winner of the theatre critics‘ Theatre of the Year (2013, 2015, 2016). The company has proven its quality several times at the DIVADLO festival, with the productions Dog‘s Heart, The Marriage, The Seagull, With and Without Hope, Russian Jam, The Hearing… Ibsen’s tragicomedy, first performed in 1885 in Bergen, did not meet with an overly enthusiastic reaction when it first came out. Today, however, it is considered one of the deepest and most modern in composition of the classic plays. This is not the first time that the play has been shown at the DIVADLO festival; past visitors have had the opportunity to see it performed by the Norwegian National Theatre from Oslo and the Petr Bezruč Theatre from Ostrava. The director David Šiktanc characterises The Wild Duck thus: “The play is about a search for what living in truth is and what is living a lie. When are we living authentically and when are we surrounding ourselves with the various forms of stuffing and curtains that we put up in front of us and that often serve as a defence or excuse in the face of reality?“

The Wild Duck in this production by David Šiktanc and dramaturg Tomáš Vůjtek takes a realist approach, putting the microcosmos of the Ekdal family at the forefront. The originally carefree idyll built on an artificial picture of Hjalmar Ekdal as provider for the farmily gradually transforms into a lacerating analysis of the relationship between man and his desires, the relationship of a parent to an illegitimate child and to marriage itself. The symbolic level of Ibsen’s play, represented by the allegory of the wild duck, is deliberately played down. Still, it should be added that even this interpretation suits Ibsen.
Iveta Dudová, UNDG.cz

Set designer Nikola Tempír has created a room in a modern block of flats, equipped with sterile furniture in the Scandinavian style. The apparent cleanness and neatness, however, is in sharp contrast with the dirt that lies in the relationships between the characters.
Ladislav Vrchovský, Ostravan

The director and dramaturg have together discovered in the play a grotesque comicness, although it is most of all in that much-vaunted central theme of living in truth even at the cost of harming one’s surroundings.
Jiří P. Kříž, Právo

When a non-too-classy drunken tenant of the orderly Ekdal family goes to throw up off the balcony in an emergency, the contents of his stomach stick to the wallpaper with its city pattern. The carefully-created “Ikea idyll” of the Ekdals thus becomes an artificial paper construction – it is not a pointless gag, but a semantic gesture.
Vladimír Just, Divadelní noviny

David Šiktanc (1987) is one of the youngest generation of Czech directors. After leaving grammar school he was accepted straight away at DAMU to study direction, from 2006-2011. He graduated with a production of Brecht’s play In the Jungle of Cities. With the exception of 2013-1015, when he was engaged at the J.K. Tyl Theatre in Pilsen, he has worked as a freelance director. As a recent graduate he create a successful production of Palmetshofer’s play hamlet is dead. no gravity in the Činoherní studio in Ústí nad Labem, for which he won the Mark Ravenhill Award (awarded by a jury which selects from productions of contemporary plays). His other successes include Mayenburg’s The Ugly One in Pilsen (2012) and O’Neill’s Long Day’s Journey Into Night at the Klicpera Theatre in Hradec Králové (2013). This is not his first time directing at the Ostrava Arena – in 2015 he directed Brecht’s Baal here. David Šiktanc’s most recent stage work is an adaptation of Frisch’s novel Homo Faber at the Činoherní studio in Ústí.

Komorní scéna Aréna Three times the winner of Theatre of the Year in surveys of Czech theatre critics, the theatre was officially created in 1994, following on from the Divadlo hudby. It is connected with the actor and director Pavel Cisovský, who for many years was its artistic head. Its appearance is currently shaped by the distinguished director Ivan Krejčí, who has been the theatre’s artistic head since 2005, and by dramaturg and playwright Tomáš Vůjtek. Their partnership has given rise to a number of critically-acclaimed productions by the theatre, known for its actors’ superb team playing. They include the best-known productions of recent years, With And Without Hope and The Hearing. The theatre has won a large number of significant awards.

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