Anioly w Ameryce I & II

Based on Tony Kushner

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The 2007 archive

Krzysztof Warlikowski / Nowy Teatr

Varsovie / Created in 2007

In Angels in America, it's AIDS which reveals the fears of an entire society. It is a society which God has abandoned so he can go away on a trip, leaving the angels to care for the world like more or less enthusiastic public servant.

Angels in America I et II, Krzysztof Warlikowski, 2007 © Christophe Raynaud de Lage


Born in 1956 in a Jewish family living in Manhattan, Tony Kushner has become one of the best-known playwrights in the United States and his play Angels in America, first performed in 1991 in Los Angeles then in London and at the Avignon Festival in 1994, directed by Brigitte Jaques, brought him international acclaim. This play was turned into an opera by the Hungarian composer Peter Eötvös in 2004. It took Tony Kushner five years to write this play which revives the great American playwriting tradition of Eugene O'Neill, but is also influenced by European classical dramatists such as Shakespeare, Goethe, Corneille and Brecht, whose works Tony Kushner has translated or adapted. Tony Kushner has also written four opera librettos and the film scenario for Munich directed by Steven Spielberg. He also worked on the TV adaptation of Angels in America directed by Mike Nichols.

Krzysztof Warlikowski's theatre is for the here and now. It's for his contemporaries, and based on his own questions, his own anger, his own desires. In today's Poland, and more widely in Europe, where minorities, whoever they are, seem to present a threat for the unsure, worried, frightened majorities who want to feel reassured, at best by anathema or threats, at worst by violence or attacks, Warlikowski takes an American play written in the nineteen eighties to reveal those who have to hide, lie to themselves and to others. In this case, that means some conservative Republicans who hide behind their moralistic façade - hiding so much that it kills them - and the ill people who wander from guilt to shame. In Angels in America, it's AIDS which reveals the fears of an entire society. It is a society which God has abandoned so he can go away on a trip, leaving the angels to care for the world like more or less enthusiastic public servants, and who look after themselves by taking valium.
The author, Tony Kushner, in this two-part play (“The Millenium Approaches” and “Perestroïka”), uses all theatrical registers in his dialogues – comedy, tragedy, drama – to talk about love, desire, sex and death. Krzysztof Warlikowski removes all the typically American stage elements from the play and stages the dialogues, relying only on words to show the lies, disguises, unspoken words and anguish, using a single set on which only the lights and shadows change. The actors, who are never grotesque, nor unnecessarily violent, use the slightest of gestures to demonstrate the embarrassment, frustration, fear, affection or desire which racks their bodies. When there is laughter, it is sparked by the sincerity of the words and gestures, by the terrible sense of humour of those who converse with death as it brushes past them and not by the view of archetypal characters hemmed in by convention.
In often preferring to address the audience directly to take part in a collective reflection on forgiveness and self-acceptance, Krzysztof Warli-kowski assumes responsibility for the contradictions and loss of meaning in a text which demands the violence of love, whether the protagonists be homosexuals or heterosexuals, calling on us to listen carefully to these characters who accept, with more or less difficulty, to strip down to the bare essentials in order to find their own truth.


Traduction en polonais Jacek Poniedzialek
Mise en scène Krzysztof Warlikowski
Avec Stanislawa Celinska, Andrzej Chyra, Magdalena Cielecka, Rafal Mackowiak, Zygmunt Malanowicz, Maja Ostaszewska, Jacek Poniedzialek, Boguslawa Schubert, Danuta Stenka, Maciej Stuhr, Tomasz Tyndyk
Scénographie Malgorzata Szczesniak
Musique Pawel Mykietyn
Lumières Felice Ross
Film Pawel Lozinski
Chants Adam Falkiewicz
Coiffures et perruques Robert Kupisz
Maquillages Gonia Wielocha
Sculptures Zofia Remiszewska, Dominik Dlouhy
Effets de peinture Arkadiusz Sylwestrowicz
Texte français publié à l'Avant-Scène théâtre


Production TR Warszawa (Teatr Rozmaitosci, Varsovie)
En coproduction avec la Comédie de Valence - Centre dramatique national Drôme-Ardèche, la Maison de la culture d'Amiens - Scène nationale, le TNT -Théâtre national de Toulouse - Midi-Pyrénées.
Accueilli avec l'aide du ministère de la Culture polonais et de l'Institut polonais de Paris
Avec le soutien de l'Onda pour les surtitres

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