Franz Kafka - Letter to my Father
Cast: Ionuț Caras, Matei Rotaru, Ștefan Dogaru, Ștefan Liță
Lights: Mădălina Mânzat
Sound: Vlad Negrea
First reactions about the performance LETER TO MY FATHER from 30 October 2017:
Good texts in crazy places stemmed from the Cluj underground, more exactly from Insomnia's crazy and bohemian atmosphere, and intends to make an artistic journey through various unconventional spaces from Cluj. Our performances emphasize firstly the texts which contain a dramatic thrill, but are not written for the stage: obscure literature pages, literary experiments or even fragments from the great literature. The main source of inspiration is not just the written book, but rather the word itself (the word that destroys or creates, the ironical word, but also the word that needs to be defended). We chose Kafka for the first edition of Texts. We hope he shall also choose us. Be warned: good Texts can only be heard once so you had better be there.
I chose this text - and be warned of the platitude that follows - because I felt I can find myself in it. I felt, somewhere between Kafka's disruptive and febrile excerpts, my own voice hidden, my voice from 7, 10, 14, 20, 30... years. How do we perceive our parents? What do we keep away from them? How do we experience their presence or absence? In what way do we communicate with each other?
I want us to read Letter to my Father in a high school, so it can be heard by students, parents, teachers. What better place than THE HIGH SCHOOL? The place that some love and others hate where our personalities begin to take shape and assume a transparent form.
And now, for the most studious of us:
"From a literary point of view, The Letter reaches an extraordinary level. The couple of contradictions between guilt and forgiveness which nurtures the act of writing has been put in balance, and now everything turns around its own centre, until the reader's view blurs and words lose all meanings for those who want to hear them spoken. If the privilege and the fundamental problem of modern literature is to question, through acts of thinking and speaking, all conventional notions, then let's just say that the last page of Letter to my Father puts the father-son relation under such severe scrutiny, that what is left after are only the masks of youth and old age grinning at each other with their empty orbits behind which there is no understanding at all: this is how Kafka comments upon his loneliness-led life. The Letter tells the story of this life as if Kafka were a K. Or Josef K. And as if his own life were one of his own stories. Just like he got used to do in his stories, Kafka comments on his own feelings, like his characters used to comment on their own, until they forgot what their feelings contained. Ultimately, he couldn't solve in any way his father issues by writing this Letter, but at least he raised what he wrote there at highest literary standards. Letter to my Father is the 20th century form of the Parable of the Prodigal Son... Kafka's work transfers the mystery of his person within the enigma of his writing and casts, we might say, the same half-shade upon both."
H. Politzer - Franz Kafka, der Künstler
Project financed within TDS, with the support of Niște oameni and developed in partnership with the National Theatre of Cluj-Napoca.