Theatre is happening live and IRL (in real life)
As an independent company without constant state support we know this word well. In the current situation uncertainty reached a totally new level. An aera with mostly only questions, but nearly no answers.
Practically: In Hungary theatres are closed since 11 March 2020. Our performances and tours for the spring and the summer got cancelled. We produce in international co-productions and earn our living by touring abroad. It is currently not a possibility. We are working with freelancer actors and technicians. They have no permanent jobs and no income now. Each system is producing superfluous material, in which superfluous people are included. As the systems are continuously changing, anyone can get at some point superfluous. That is exactly what we deal with in our artistic work. People on the margins of our society. Now we are on the way to the margins. Practical issues, but we have to face them. We have responsibility toward our colleagues. Our possibilities are quite limited, but we try our best to help. We need to keep up the basis to be able to restart working later on. There is of course the common belief that you can do art under any circumstances. But lets not go that far. Lets stay with the minimum. Like for example a minimum income for everyone. We should’t have any worries about what to eat next week or tomorrow or today. When this is done, we can start concentrating on our mission, which is in our case art.
Artistically: In times when travelling is not an option anymore, when festivals can not be hold, theatres are closed and people can’t see each other it is maybe time to find a new form in which it is feasible to make a theatre performance. But what could that be? Definitely not going online, as theatre is happening live and IRL (in real life). Nobody knows right now when it will be possible to live a normal life again, how long the continuous waiting, the futureless uncertainty and the fear of the unknown will last and whether it will ever have an end. So we definitely need a transition space. A place between reality and virtuality. There is no place like that? There must be. If not outside, then inside. Maybe even closer than we think? Like our imagination, which can take us anywhere and even together. The crisis should bring us only temporarily apart, but on the long term much closer. Our goal is to create a zone of empathy, equality, humanity, solidarity and transmit the feeling that beyond borders we are all in the same boot. That’s exactly what we are working on in our new project, even if we are only doing the first steps.