BWW Review: MAGNOLIA at Teatr Wspolczesny Wroclaw, Frog Rain of Emotions
It isn't easy to write about contemporary art - it's more symbolic, more intense, more... unsaid that classic one. The same show can be a Masterpiece for some, for others an utterance of foreign language - they will just open their eyes, hold a breath but don't understand a thing. For me Magolia was strangely both.
This play is based on Paul Thomas Anderson film from late 90, there are some connection with this source but above all it's about love. Love for somebody, from someone and about yourself. Show based on love could be banal (this theme was used so many times) but it's not. This Magnolia is a picture of piece of reality about confronting the END. Leads have to do kind of summary of their lives, fears, feelings and things they had done. People are feeling a breath of catastrophe on their backs and they act on edge - they are pushed to their limits and only then they show the real image, the real face of themselves and even for them it's sometimes surprising.
They all have secrets and desire for redemption for all bad things they made. Is it too late for them?
In the play we have a lot of (a huge packet of) different subjects and relationships so dramatically deconstructed on the stage. Parent(s) - child(ren), man - man, woman - man - all those connections are flying on the stage like butterflies - fast, slow, colorful but very fragile. Love is the wind but it's too strong or too weak - it's extreme or not present at all and our characters are too focused to realize that this pure and true feeling had transformed to a dark moth and a colorful creature it's just an ideal concept away from reality.
Past sooner or later knocks on theirs doors and somehow locks their ability to love truly. They deny, try to run and ignore emotions. Not resolved issues from the past are rotting in the background and this damage is contagious. It takes a lot of courage to stand up and man up the situation with a dose of vulnerability and empathy... Are they really ready for it?
Actors are giving their best - they are living, vibrating, full of emotions and colors, my favorite couple Paulina Wosik (Klaudia) and Piotr Lukaszczyk (January Kundelek) make a perfect dynamic duet. Self-confident (to the limit) Mateusz Lasowski (as Kot Kocur Kotkowski) is stunning, relations in marriage Anna Kieca with Maciej Tomaszewski (Mr and Ms Krok) are deeply embroiled. Tomasz Orpinski as an Angel is appalling with his stability and Jerzy Senator as Donat Kowalski highly disturbing but really precious. Other members of ensemble (Ewelina Paszke-Lowitzsch, Wieslaw Cichy, Milosz Pietruski, Igor Mizgala) are like matching puzzles in this virtuosity of gusts of hearts. Director Krzysztof Skonieczny put audience in this multifarious environment without any lifebuoy, show is long and full of threads, too much for my taste. At some point a spectator is not able to appreciate as he should new scenes appearing in front of his eyes. Every single one is precise and sharp but a long way on the edge of the knife can be tiring.
Frogs are their damaged souls, unresolved cases, question without answers. They live inside and take over like a plague. They look for food: need of acceptance and love.
In this viral atmosphere full of lights, effects, rain, changing weather, plants, music and crowded atmosphere (thanks to Fabien Lede - he did really amazing job). Audience can feel buzzing, bearing emotions so the most powerful moments are au contraire simple, quiet and emotional confessions with a loud of sadness. In those moments characters are sensitive and defenseless. Simple and powerful. Beautiful.
Foto Aleksandra Bydlowka