Before the War

  • Year: 2004
  • Category: Theatre, Direction
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Director’s notes.

It always seems very easy to write direction notes when you’re still in the design phase, everything is simple and ideas still walk freely between the lines of the text. But when you stand in front of your computer screen to start typing words, put your thoughts in writing, then you realize that ideas, words, images, colors, noises, characters, actors meet and collide among themselves as in a car crash.

With this text, though it was written more than twenty years ago, Giuseppe Manfridi immediately communicates strong emotions that remain very current, and correlations with the everyday are spontaneous.

Even though I am a cautious optimist, I find among the lines of this comedy some extremely contemporary themes related to our society: the unbridled race of power, whatever it is, disregarding all sorts of rules and respect for human life, where its annihilation is the only way to win and triumph. In “spying” the two warriors, the image is that of a lazy loneliness that leads to imagine “what is out there” in order to be able to influence “what is inside”: a struggle between fetuses of the same uterus to establish primogeniture. The female figure represents the pain of incomprehension, humiliated intuition, crushed love. Our Cassandra is the same as those Bosnian mothers who weep and pray in absolute indifference, so that their children would not be sent to the massacre! And the interior where the story of the two warriors takes place increasingly gets the appearance of the fuselage of a dead-air plane, which after the 11th of September 2001, the nefarious chapter of our generation, is a symbol of an angry devastation.

Power, arrogance, overwhelming, cruelty, dullness, violence, execution, opportunism, rape, death: words that are more and more on our agendas, words that arrive at the same speed of events in our cathodic newspapers. So I imagine that this telematic wall of disgust is broken by the protest of the word, as the door of the city of Troy was broken down by the horse. And Cassandra, angel of truth, annihilated by the indifference, which has always been the “sniper” of humanity.

I therefore propose to all of us the role of witnesses in this new Middle Ages, protagonists of a new obscurantist period that is already beyond the threshold of the new millennium.