“I am very happy right now, because I am surrounded by many friendly, honest and talented people in this theatre“ – said stage director from Hungary Szabo K. Istvan, who staged the performance “Ivona, Princess of Burgundia“ in Alytus City Theatre. After almost half a year of quarantine, the theater opened its doors to the audience with this premiere, there is no doubt that this performance will participate in various international theater festivals.

“Ivona, Princess of Burgundia“ (© D.Matvejev)

„We feel really good, it is truly an extraordinary feeling when the audience returns to the theater,” says director Inesa Pilvelytė.

First meetings with the audience have already happened. Although the number of spectators in the hall is very limited and medical masks or respirators must be worn during the whole performance, this does not obscure the joy of the meeting.

The performance “Ivona, Princess of Burgundia“ based on controversial and well-known play by Witold Gombrowicz, writer of  20th century. It tells about a girl who does not fit in the existing society norms and her silent presence and unattractive appearance contradict to the system. In a world of vanity and subservience, Ivona becomes an awkward, naked truth.

The director Szabo K. Istvan, who decided to build the grotesque play in Alytus, says that he chose it because the work is very relevant to this region. Its aesthetic path is close to this theater, this country, this region, ”says the director, adding that the troupe was already familiar with him from the first visit in Alytus, at the international theater festival COMMEDIA.

“Ivona, Princess of Burgundia“ (© D.Matvejev)

“We had a good connection, yes, sometimes there was a language barrier, sometimes it was hard to understand what we want from each other. But I think, with empathy, our efforts and body language, we found a common stage language. And we have developed this language in a very nice way, ”said director Szabo K. Istvan before leaving.

Working with an international team and world known artists is extremely important for the Alytus City Theater Troupe. “The director has created a comfortable aura, it is a new experience with an intense but calm walk towards result. The creative process was very good and a new experience for the team. When artists of this caliber come, you see that people, not their awards, are coming, , ”says actor Vaidas Praspaliauskas, the creator of the role of Prince Philip.

The opportunity to invite a well-known director and his creative team from Romania, composer Cári Tibor, choreographer Baczó Tünde, appeared after Alytus City Theater won the project „Building Bridges: Tourism and Cultural Development in Sovetsk and Alytus Regions”.

“Ivona, Princess of Burgundia“ (© D.Matvejev)

The performance is ready for touring. „Although the theatrical language is understandable to the world, there is a lot of important text in this performance, so, thanks to the project, subtitles and the necessary equipment have been taken care of,” says I. Pilvelytė. Although the borders have not been opened yet, the first tour is planned to the project partners from Tilsit Theater in Kaliningrad.

It is planned that this performance will be shown not only in Alytus, Lithuania, but will also be seen by foreign viewers. „I hope that „Ivona, Princess of Burgundy“ will be a part of many international theater festivals. Already today we are talking about a visit to the native countries of director, composer and choreographer – Hungary, Romania, ”the theater director shares her plans.

The implementation of the project gives Alytus spectators the opportunity to see the performance „Ivona, Princess of Burgundy” for free. Invitations to the performances that took place on May 13 and 15 can be purchased at www.tiketa.lt and at the theater box office from May 7.

“Ivona, Princess of Burgundia“ (© D.Matvejev)

The performance is being created by implementing the project LT-RU-2-063 “Building Bridges: Tourism and Culture Development in Sovetsk and Alytus Regions” funded by the European Union. The total budget of the project is EUR 573,856.81 and the funding of the program is EUR 516,471.12. The share of Alytus City Theater in the budget is 267951.84 EUR, and the part financed by the program for Alytus City Theater is 241,156.65 EUR. Project duration – 24 months. The contents of this publication are the sole responsibility of Alytus City Theater and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Union.