Analogous to the sporting event the Olympic Games, the Great Dionysia Festival was a competitive theater festival held as a national religious ceremony in ancient Greece. With this new work, which recently had its premiere at The Paris Autumn Festival, young French theater director Maxime Kurvers proposes new approaches to sharing the essence and structure of the Greek tragedy, a genre that could be characterized as the stronghold of Western theater.
The single actor on stage begins to recount possible “births of tragedy” in the manner of telling a subjectified history. 2500 years ago, the Theatre of Dionysus in Athens was a place where over 10,000 citizens gathered to discuss the ethos and ideals of the city-state, through plays based on history and mythology. A reenacted memory of tragic literature and a history of western scenic art emerge from the actor’s portrayal of these events, conjured from the first known tragic work, The Persians by Aeschylus. In 2018, what is the significance of telling an audience the story of the Persian army’s devastation in their defeat by the Greeks? This deceptively simple, radical performance will stimulate audiences’ minds, bodies, and emotions, prompting empathetic and intellectual reflections on the basic mechanisms and conditions that birthed theater as theater, and on the role of theater itself.
Maxime Kurvers was born in France in 1987. He pursued theoretical studies in the performing arts before joining the stage design class at the School of the National Theater in Strasbourg. He created his first performance, short pieces 1-9 (2015), as a theater program that examined the minimal conditions of its own realization. Dictionary of music (2016) continued this questioning of the theater and its resources via the presence and the history of other mediums. Since 2016 he has been an associate artist at La Commune centre dramatique national Aubervilliers. His Dictionary of music and this last piece, The birth of tragedy, were performed at The Paris Autumn Festival in 2016 and 2018 respectively.
February 23rd [Sat] / 16:30
February 24th [Sun] / 16:30 *Talk (after the performance)
1F Minato Park Shibaura, 1-16-1 Shibaura, Minato-ku, Tokyo 105-0023
How to Participate
Booking essential. Show general admission pass on entry.
French (with Japanese interpretation)
Concept, Direction｜Maxime Kurvers
Script, Dramaturg｜Julien Geffroy, Maxime Kurvers, Caroline Menon-Bertheux
Technical Director｜Manon Lauriol
Produced by Théâtre de la Commune (Aubervilliers)
In collaboration with Festival d’Automne à Paris
Venue support｜Minato City
Supported by Institut français du Japon