Larkhall Bath

6th & 7th
June '99


'A Little Requiem for Kantor'





A Little Requiem for Kantor

'A Little Requiem for Kantor'

devised & Directed by Zofia Kalinska
Music by Bartosz Chajdecki

with the Ariel Quartet:

Zofia Dabrowska.... 1st Violin
Bartosz Chajdecki... 2nd Violin
Anna Kalis...............Viola
Tomasz Grzyb .........Cello

Their brief return tour in Britain this summer has been arranged specifically by Bath Fringe Theatre team. 'A Little Requiem for Kantor' won the Fringe first award, Edinbugh 1998, and numerous rave reviews.

'A Little Requiem for Kantor'
Tadeusz Kantor, one of the greatest Polish and European artists - painter and founder of the famous and unique theatre company Cricot 2, died of a heart attack in 1990. Temo Binosi, the theatre critic asked him once, what would be left from his theatre after his death. Kantor replied: The body will become a miserable sack of dust, but not the idea. The idea cannot be killed. The idea can be resurrected. This is my only conviction. The idea will be reborn....Always.
I was luck to have the chance to work with Kantor, as an actress for 20 years. Now I feel an obligation: I owe him a homage. Eight years after his death, Bartosz Chajdecki, a seventeen year old composer from Kracow, composed at my request, an incredible piece of music - A Little Requiem for Kantor.
Inspired by his music, I added some memories from Kantor's Theatre. Bartosz proved that Kantor's art is still alive and can be a source of inspiration for young artists.
I recommended this music, so deep and lyrical, the most of it I used in my performance with the same title....Zofia Kalinska

The set presents a complex narrative of visual elements that explain little until the components of music and performers complete the allegory. The metaphoric objects that adorn the stage produce layers of conflicting meanings. The overpowering theatre is of monochrome. As with 'Jan Svankmajer' and 'The Brothers Quay' metaphors used by the former Eastern Block countries do not immediately mesh with their Western equivalents; we need more explanation.
The quartet enter the set and begin to play, the ghosts of the derelict warehouse depicted stir in the wings, the fixtures and the abandoned props.
The metaphysical saga unfolds.

The performance of 'A Little Requiem for Kantor' presents a descriptive narrative of the unreal, juxtaposed against an unfamiliar visual environment. The performance is both haunting and chilling but what leaves an impression in the mind is that of the melancholic score. One feels torn between the stage and some no-man's land in the recesses of the unconscious. It is unfortunate that this performance will not be seen more in the UK, it deserves more showings and we need to see it.



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