“THE WEDDING DRESS”
by NATALIA ANTYPA-KATSOU
By the group “En Spoudi”
Experimental Scene of the National Theatre of Greece-
DIRECTION: NATALIA ANTYPA-KATSOU
SCENOGRAPHY: EUGENE HAMOUZA
LIGHTING: VASSILIS PANANIDIS
MUSIC: EVA LOUKATOU
Helen: EFTIHIA JAKOUMI
Katherine: DIMITRA VLACHOU
Thallia: EUGENE HAMOUZA
INTRODUCING “EN SPOUDI”
Σπουδή (η):[αρχ. σπουδή< σπεύδω] βιασύνη, γρηγοράδα// προθυμία, ζήλος// μελέτη επιστήμηςή τέχνης// προσχεδίασμα μουσικού ή ζωγραφικού έργου. (Ελληνικό λεξικό Τεγόπουλος-Φυτράκης)
Spoudi: speed// eagerness // study of a science or art// schetsch of music or drawing
(Tegopoulos-Fytrakis Greek Dictionary)
“En Spoudi”, a young theatre group formed with the occurance of “The Wedding Dress” and with the enthusiasm to go further.
Eagerness and speed caracterise this effort. Studying still in the drama school, we have realised that our voyage just began. That’s how the name “En Spoudi” came. The important is to study, to learn and try.
With special love, with determination to explore theatre, or rather life through theatre.
Theatre is of course “word-speech”. It needs a story that needs to be told. And people, to whom we address, hoping they will understand us.
All that comes through experience, living, getting real impression of things.
The characters of “Thw Wedding Dress” are not extraterrestrials, they are a version of ordinary people, perhaps they exist.
Getting on stage is not all. We seek feelings through these persons, as actors and as spectators.
It looks simple in this specific play; it only takes a room with
few objects and three actors. But we wish to give the characters life, to exclude the optical illusion of a constricting room and a predetermined scheme, we prefer simplicity in material and abundance in ambiance, without extravagant expressions or unreasonable
We don’t aim at realistic representation, or fake result, but we appreciate the procedure, the discovery of the characters through exploring ourselves.
Each performance is a symbol with lots of meanings. But theatre happens “here now”. The ideal is to use the play, to spot the truth that lays in it behind image and language. And that occurs in action, while rehearsing, studying and trying.
“The Wedding Dress”, a theatre play in three parts, a performance in three aspects- of subject and structure. Three female figures
on stage, each one contains particles of the other or is a person that completes it, even as a contrast. The main theme is Helen getting married to Costas, or rather the consequence of this marriage-to-be. Nothing extraordinary. A tradition, a ceremony
that happens since the apparition of human, a symbol that goes beyond generations. To that we become witness, since the moment Helen is getting dressed for the wedding, when the secret comes out from her future mother -in -law and the wife of Costas’ brother, like an avalanche. Symbols and meaning.
Intruding the thought, the psychological situation and the behavior of each woman, we follow them after the ceremony, when each one is left alone with her phantom.
One useful information, they have all worn the same wedding dress. They have connected their existence to the same man, Costas, projecting him in three different forms of consciousness.
Two generations fighting to rule in the same era. When all forms and ideas have become our new reality, we can see the disrance that seperates them. And what about us? Have we changed also? What distinguishes the past from the future when it comes to desires and passions? What sets a limit between the others and our own existence? Especially nowadays, when some things
still happen, although we bear the responsibility of freedom and the obligation of choice.
Part 1, monologue
Costas’ and Michael’s mother, Thallia, returns home after the wedding of her beloved son (Costas). She talks of her past and of how much Costas means to her. She goes back to the day she decided to get him to marry Helen, who was “harmless”, in order to make him stay away from Katherine, his brother’s wife. She reveals Costas is the infant she got from a secret relationship with the only man she had ever loved.
Part 2, the act
Helen is getting dressed for her wedding with Costas. She is pregnant. Her future mother-in-law, Thallia, and the wife of Costas’ brother, Katherine, help her, and almost unwantingly make her realize: Katherine and Costas were lovers, Thallia knew and the wedding was planned by Thallia. She has to decide if she still wants to marry him.
Part 3, two images
Helen and Katherine after the wedding, each one at home, will soon go to bed beside their husbands. Fighting with their fears and the truth, the new reality that stroke them in a moment.
(document sent to the commission of “Empty Space” along with the play)
Note: In the performance, The 1st part was used as a puzzle, at intervals during the main act (part 2), like a parallel window, and the after-the-wedding act had three simultaneous images, the three women ( the part from Thallias monologue that revealed that Costas was the fruit of a secret love was used here).