A follow-up to the artistic and popular success of HamletMachine in 1991, Free Theatre returned to Heiner Mueller with the development and presentation of a new interpretation of the modern masters work in 1995, MedeaMaterial. The Free Theatre was gutted and transformed into a nightclub complete with a bar in the playing area and television screens and peep holes all around the space. The entire theatre was used for the action - backstage, understage, toilet, workshop, store room - with the actors taking up different interpretations of Mueller's collage of texts (fragments of everyday conversations he recorded) inspired by the Medea and Jason story. Following an overtly ritualistic opening through and around the audience, the action moved to different parts of the theatre. Audiences had to move, drink in hand, to see the diverse Jasons and Medeas taking up different perspectives on the story inspired by the distinct spaces of the theatre - peeping and eavesdropping on couples squabbling as if in a nightclub. The performance document above was produced by cast member Olivia Lory-Kay.
Falkenberg has, once again, set a standard of brilliant imaginative theatre which others can only dream of attaining. But if only they would just dream of it.
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