One lone actor, with the stage to himself for 1hr 20mins. Superlative! Alone and arrogant, cynical and insolent, burlesque and immoral, the orator seems to have the whole nation at his feet. To shoulder him as he speaks rivers of mind-blowing density, David Murgia can count on the unobtrusive and oh-so-subtle presence of his guitar-playing accomplice who adds a whimsical touch to the show.
Ascanio Celestini’s script is, as to be expected, brilliant, funny and dark. As usual, this worthy heir to Dario Fo spreads confusion. His words slip, slide and bounce back and forth, steering us through an analysis of today’s world that bears hard truths, both lucid and cruel.
Hidden meanings, implicit denunciation and cut-throat slogans draw the audience into a story told through various voices, from class struggle to bread production, from high finance to immigration, from an improbable story about umbrellas to the fate of prostitutes from the East.
Mixing verve and cynicism, David Murgia forces us to look at the powers-that-be straight in the eye and, in one final roar, brings us face to face with the flaws and vices of today’s system. We’re left at the foot of the stage with our forced smiles, our doubts and, just perhaps, yearning for a silent revolution.
The reprisal of the highly acclaimed and award-winning Discours à la Nation (which won the Critics’ Choice award in 2013 and the People’s Choice at the Festival OFF in Avignon) provides the opportunity to see this remarkable show one more time.