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THE BROTHERS KARAMAZOV (F. M. Dostojevskij – Evald Schorm)

Martin Čičvák

Direction: Martin Čičvák
Dramaturgy: Martin Kubran
Set design: Hans Hoffer
Costumes: Mária Havran
Music: Ivan Acher
Dmitri: Martin Finger
Alyosha: Igor Orozovič / Michal Čapka
Ivan: Honza Hájek
Katarina: Gabriela Míčová
GRUSHENKA: Natálie Puklušová
Lisa: Ivana Uhlířová

Premiere February 20th, 2015

The Brothers Karamazov – Dostoyevsky’s polyphonic novels, in which each figure has his or her own truth, constantly offer themselves for adaptation. The Brothers Karamazov is one of the most frequently adapted and shown works – during the post-war period, in particular, there was a long line of productions, of which the place of honour goes to the dramatisation and production by Evald Schorm in the Divadlo Na Zábradlí (first performed in March 1979). “The actual dramatisation is more in the form of a script, with compact ‘chapters’. Situation piles on situation, with their train of thought brought alive by the almost organic ‘film editing’ and the interweaving of scenes and reminiscences on stage. The plot concentrates around the extreme
situation of the reaction to the murder, and Mitya’s trial (…) It starts with laughter… it ends with the mournful sound of the harmonica. The deed has been investigated and judgment passed. And the truth?” Radka Denemarková writes about Schorm’s dramatisation.

“ It cannot be said that Kukura is better than those around him in terms of acting. His rich, psychological acting and his sharplycarved physiognomy, capable of transforming itself from the charm of an ageing Don Juan to the expression of the hideousness of a collapsed monster whipping up a storm on the small stage. Kukura is a star here, but as part of a stage testimony. It is a black star, around which everything revolves. His face reflects a deep fear of death,
devilish malice, a propensity for cold-blooded gambles and pathological cruelty. Old Karamazov has reached the height of evil hidden in human society, but he still manages to beg for sympathy, although he is also prepared to hand out a couple of slaps in return. (…) The production does not try to answer the question of whether God exists or not, but it does provoke a dispassionate and currently extremely topical look at the question of why the journey to God or Non-God has to be lined with corpses. The demons of the individual soul and the demons of power plays intertwine in the contemporary world. Only someone whose soul is not in order unleashes terror. And it is not only a question of the soul, God and similar noble concepts. In the world of the Karamazovs, too, a bundle of banknotes lurks in the background of all the action.
—Marie Zdeňková, Divadelní noviny

“ In visual terms the director Martin Čičvák has clearly drawn inspiration from the atmosphere of the street Ve Smečkách, in which the theatre is located in the midst of several large sex
businesses. On the bare black stage the entry to the brothel glows red like a lift down to hell, there is a pole for erotic productions and also a neon sign saying Romantic World. On the other side is a dirty latrine – here, too, questions can be asked about God and immortality. Old furniture and period junk lie in a heap under the stage, as if the producers wanted to show that these props no longer belong to the story.
—Marie Reslová, Hospodářské noviny

Martin Čičvák (1975) – Studied directing at JAMU in Brno. Also studied at Dartington College of Arts in Britain, where he directed Genet’s The Maids and Strindberg’s Miss Julie. While a student he also guest directed at the East Slovak Theatre in Košice, the National Theatre Brno and Brno’s Divadlo v 7 a půl. His production of Bernhard’s Immanuel Kant in the National Theatre Brno brought him an Alfréd Radok award in 2000 in the category Talent of the Year. Since 2001
he has directed at Prague’s Drama Club, where his productions have included Büchner’s Wozzeck, Suchovo-Kobylin’s Trial, Molière’s The Misanthropist and Amphitryon, Feydeau’s Ladies’ Tailors, Albee’s play The Goat, or Who is Sylvia? (nominated in Slovakia for a DOSKY 2004 award for best direction), Chekhov’s Ivanov, Vinterberg’s Festen, Marina Carr’s play By the Bog of Cats, Mitterer’s Mein Ungeheuer, Orton’s play What the Butler Saw and so on. He also regularly directs at other Czech and Slovak theatres. Although he is primarily engaged at the Drama Club, a small and intimate theatre, the strength of his direction is in large canvases, with an emphasis on contemporary shifts in the classics.

Činoherní klub (The Drama Club) – “The founders of the Činoherní klub, Ladislav Smoček and Jaroslav Vostrý, deliberately avoided formulating any kind of grand programme or manifesto, even when their theatre first started. In the begnning there was the apparently simple thesis that Vostrý formulated from his previous observations of theatre, as a theatre critic: ‘The discovery of theatrical possibilities is… the discovery of the possibilities of man.’ Over the course of time it proved to be a theory so complete that its traces can still be found in all! – both the more and the less successful – productions at the Činoherní klub to this day. During the 1960s the Činoherní klub was a theatre with no precedent. Today it is a modern, classic drama theatre, where testimonies about man, about people, are still communicated by means of the actor,” Jan Kolář wrote on the fiftieth anniversary of the theatre. The theatre is now headed by Vladimír Procházka, with its key directors being Ladislav Smoček, Martin Čičvák and Ondřej Sokol.


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