Subtitled “We conform to our nonconformism,” the new show by La Re-Sentienda is about a social group they consider to have reached a dominating position today: the Bobos (for Bourgeois bohemians). Chilean director Marco Layera, aware of belonging to that group, questions the potential and integrity of this group that has become a social class defined by its total acceptance of capitalism as a lifestyle and a means of communication, in its relationship to the world and the market, while claiming to be the heir to so-called counter-cultural values. In order to study this inherent paradox, he and his company have decided to use the realm of fiction: on the evening of 1 May in Santiago de Chile, as protesters are taking to the streets in ever greater numbers, members of the capital's cultural elite gather at a friend's. They're there to celebrate his appointment as Minister of Culture. However, disillusioned by the situation, he locks himself in his room and refuses to join the celebration. All he sees now is the hypocrisy of his friends, a world of art that has become self-satisfied and smug and is blatantly incapable of engineering real change of any kind. From this elitist circle, the play, with its contradictory and provocative title, then goes looking for actual centres of radical resistance where a true alternative model to capitalism and conformity exists.
In France, the phrase “bourgeois bohème” first appeared in 1978, in Claire Brétécher's bande dessinée Les Frustrés. In 2000, American writer David Brooks published Bobos in Paradise, a portmanteau of “bohemian bourgeois;” the neologism is immediately used in and popularised by the French translation by Agathe Nabet and Marianne Thirioux, published that same year under the title Les Bobos. Characterised by their relaxed lifestyle and relationship to consumerism, this social class is made up of educated and well off people who combine capitalist behaviours and left-leaning values.
Direction Marco Layera
Text La Re-sentida
Stage design Pablo de la Fuente
Costumes Daniel Bagnara
Music Alejandro Miranda
With Diego Acuña, Benjamín Cortés, Carolina de la Maza, Pedro Muñoz, Carolina Palacios, Benjamín Westfall
Production La Re-Sentida
Co-production HAU Hebbel am Ufer (Berlin), German Federal Cultural Foundation
Avec le soutien of Onda