Zidul (The Wall)
by Theodora Herghelegiu

Neither taking the theatre director temporarily hostage nor media announcements produce any practical results. Behind the makeshift wall, there are still hopes of at least being important enough to be kept under surveillance and infiltrated by an informer, but nothing happens. Resistance starts to crumble. In the end, one day the walls are simply sealed off from outside. The senseless protest is superseded by a silent forgetting. Anyone seeking to exclude himself or herself is lost.

The third part (Eternal) is set on the border between Rumania and the rest of the world. Once again the ten nameless figures appear, this time without the stocking masks but accompanied by garden dwarfs with violins. Together, they sing a popular Rumanian folk song about a poor hairdresser’s love for a dressmaker who dies from TB. In the refrain, we learn that the dressmaker is not actually dead but has metamorphosed.

Nearly twenty years after the Wall came down, this Rumanian contribution presents theatre as the mirror of a constantly changing world, innovative and provocative and, at the same time, perplexing in many ways. This is an attempt to set Rumania’s relations to Europe in a new light based on a new fundamental insight: rather than theatre changing society, it is, if at all, people who change theatre. In socialism, theatre gave people a refuge. That traditional function appears to be lost. There are entirely new walls blocking every protest.

A text by Jens Groß