site index          

Picture of the Day
| today | tomorrow

October 12, 2009

subscribe    about

Understanding is limited. That's the fundamental challenge.
Would problems exist between people if there were true
understanding? If we could know ourselves that would be a
start but mysteries lie in the heart. And when it comes to
communication, the best we can do is gabble and nod.
Which is what Prague's Divadlo Coze? (Theater What the?)
might be about. From what little I comprehend of their website,
they produce exclusively plays which play with language and
mean to address meaning. Their first production is a one-act
marathon of alliteration in which every word begins with letter P.
It's hard to explain, but because word endings indicate who's
doing what to whom, the Czech language compresses nicely
and makes extended wordplay like this possible. For example,
the play's concise two-word title Posnídam Pozdeji translates
into cumbersome English as, "I will have breakfast later."
Though my Czech is pretty good I found it difficult to follow the
preposterous palavering. Perhaps perplexing people was the
point and purpose of the production. The plot pivoted on a
 dissipated lord and his contemptuous servant played,
respectively, by a sculptor and a dentist (who
also wrote the script). It was a phenomenal
performance and it's kind of boggling that
anyone would put so much work into a
one-night only event. (Though I suppose
it makes sense in a country which twice
elected an absurdist playwright president.)
I only heard about it because my friend
Honza has been helping Marcel Dufek,
who made a cameo appearance as a
counselor who gives useless advice.
Or maybe he's just misunderstood.