Category: Spain

Kassandra: Fake prophecy lost in interpretation

Kassandra at Barcelona's Teatre Nacional de Catalunya

Elisabet Casanovas gives an impressive yet exhausting performance as Kassandra. This excessively didactic play by Sergio Blanco is based on the figure of Greek tragedy who was cursed with the power of prophecy yet further cursed to never be believed. This familiar part of the tale was dropped in near the end with a tarot card… Read more »

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Keep on Walking, Federico: An Ode to the Outsider

Mark Lockyer: Keep on Walking, Federico

Like his first piece, Living With the Lights On, Mark Lockyer’s “love letter to Spain” is an intense, sprawling monologue of inner and outer experiences, realisations of recent and distant past, delivered in an entertaining attack of sincerity. Unlike his first piece, Keep on Walking, Federico is set in an anonymous “authentically Spanish” village on the… Read more »

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La Calavera de Connemara: Grave Matter

The proposition to exhume the remains of fascist dictator Francisco Franco after nearly half a decade resting in peace in a state-funded mausoleum, puts a grave twist on Martin McDonagh’s A Skull in Connemara that makes a return to Barcelona’s La Villarroel in an energetic Catalan version directed by Iván Morales. Set in the district… Read more »

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Three Times Rebel – Rage against the patriarchy

Marina Mascarell Three Times Rebel

“Sexism fixates on the body of a woman,” says the Valencia-born choreographer Marina Mascarell, whose pitch perfect dance piece Three Times Rebel uncovers the roots of the feminist movement as an act of physical defence as well as intellectual defiance. The contemporary work, which premiered last year, developed “organically” after years of research, says Mascarell…. Read more »

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Frankenstein: Shocked into Life and Looking for Love

Joel Joan is the monster in Frankenstein.

In this entertaining homage to Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein a team of Catalan multidisciplinary creators have adjusted the plot of the 1818 original to present an atmospheric if ‘diet’ version of the tale. A Wagneresque soundtrack and enigmatic images of the natural world provide the scenery for the story of mad scientist Dr. Frankenstein, who, in… Read more »

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La Visita de la Vella Dama: macabre take on a creepy classic

Catalan adaptation of the play by Friedrich Dürrenmat

Sharp-toothed tragi-comedy La Visita de La Vella Dama (Der Besuch der Alten Dame), directed by Jordi Palet Puig with Vicky Peña and Xavier Capdet in the leading roles, works great in this astute Catalan adaptation that uses creepy puppets as characters, the work of the inventive Farrés brothers. Written in the 1950s by the politically-active… Read more »

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Madrid – Live In Theater revives La Movida Madrileña

Live in Theatre - Madrid

Immersive theatre creates a world in a set space, in which audiences are invited to experience a three-dimensional fiction meticulously created and controlled by invisible puppet masters. Interactive theatre, on the other hand, is rough and ready – the city itself becomes a backdrop and a protagonist in an unfolding drama, and the audience directly… Read more »

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Massacre! a bullet point history of Spanish capitalism

Marta Calvó and Alberto San Juan in Masacre Photo © David Ruiz

The average worker – aka the Spanish middle classes – is the focal point of a satirical stage production by the Madrid-based cooperative Teatro del Barrio. Masacre (Massacre) is an informative and incredulity-inducing theatre piece that covers some 100 years of Spanish economic history in just 80 minutes. The production features prominent Spanish actors Alberto San Juan… Read more »

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Jane Eyre: Of Liberation and Love…

Ariadna Gil as Jane Eyre. Photo © Ros Ribas

Featuring a breath-taking performance by Ariadna Gil, this Catalan theatre adaptation of Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre distances itself from the bleak, freezing Yorkshire moors, and reimagines the North as a stiflingly formal, anonymous lobby with a grand piano and four identical doors reflected ad infinitum in vast mirrors at each end. Gil plays the eponymous… Read more »

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Història: A Play of Shifting Perspectives

Història - Sixto Paz Productions Photo: © Kiku Pinyol

The shocks and infidelities of history and memory are explored in Història, a small format theatre production brought to Barcelona’s Espai Lliure after a successful run at Sala Beckett. This narratively and visually engaging piece is the work of Catalan playwright Jan Vilanova Claudín in collaboration with director and actor Pau Roca, and features strong… Read more »

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