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Oskaras Koršunovas: tear down the walls for the sake of the theater of ruthless truth

In “Hamlet” we were invited to ask ourselves the question “Who are you?” Who are you as an actor, who you are as a character, who you are as a spectator? The question asked over and over again, sounding louder and louder, becomes the prologue of the tragedy by Shakespeare, taking us to the time before the beginning of the play, when the actor prepares for his role in the make-up room, that place of transformation and self-creation where an existence and a semblance merge and double.

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The Seagull directed by Oskaras Korsunovas

This account concerns the third performance of The Seagull directed by Oskaras Korsunovas with the OKT/Vilnius City Theatre as part of the 2013 Sirenos Festival held annually in Vilnius. The fact that, to date, Korsunovas has not announced the production’s official premiere may well suggest that he feels it is not altogether ready — and this, irrespective of its laboratory-like quality, which is fully intentional and absolutely integral to the production’s structure and aesthetic.

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The anti-form of new forms

Koršunovas began the 15th season of his theatre with The Seagull by Anton Chekhov. The director himself motivates this choice by his previous performances (Hamlet and The Lower Depths), and the themes they developed. The OKT platform becoming a kind of laboratory that brings the viewer back to the basics of acting and watching, The Seagull is truly wonderful material.

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“Sirenos ’13”. “New forms” OK

In The Seagull, created from nothing in the half empty OKT studio, theatre becomes life and life becomes theatre. The Seagull turned into ether vapour fills up the space to the point of explosive tension, and “the rest is silence”.

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THE SKY OF THE LOWER DEPTHS or THERE ARE NEW FORMS!

It is hard to quickly and briefly describe my very fresh experience of such a play, but it is impossible to control the desire to express a few particularly vivid emotional impressions, because very soon they will be formulated and re-formulated, evaluated and re-evaluated by others and alas their primal freshness will be gone.

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Theatrical Miracles of The Seagull

A conversation between theatre critics Elona Bajorinienė and Rūta Oginskaitė

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Theatricality as resistance. Eastern European directors and Oskaras Koršunovas

The theatricality of political and social criticism, much of it in this kind of absurdist idiom regardless of which play was being performed (frequently it was Shakespeare, so open to metaphorical transposition), became the hallmark of the Eastern European directors who acquired, or were granted, the role of spokes-person for their nations when the latter were under iron control.