In the centre of a stage shrouded in darkness, ten people stand close together, like a compact block. Space is tight, and escaping doesn’t seem possible. Solitaire, the last play written by Lars Norén, starts with a situation at once very clear and indeterminate, and soon the characters are left alone with themselves and with the group, leaving readers and spectators alike without any point of reference save for their own fears or desires. Starting from this radical choice, Sofia Adrian Jupither stages an economical and implacable version faithful to the style of her favourite writer. The dialogues, at once prosaic, humorous, and frantic, sketch human destinies that echo ours. “And the why of the situation stops being relevant after a while and gives way to the how. The idea is to survive this episode which seems not quite real. Not to be overwhelmed by panic but to control oneself on an individual level so as to quickly be able to think as a group.” Will we find out who those people are? Or will their actions speak for them? Lars Norén and Sofia Adrian Jupither leave it up to us.
Born in 1944 in Sweden, Lars Noréen was seen as the successor to Strindberg, Bergman, and Ibsen. At age twenty, he was sent to a psychiatric hospital, where he was subjected to electroshock therapy and isolation. A poet, novelist, and playwright, Lars Noréen became in the 1980s the figurehead of a committed and violently politica new wave of creation. His work was a decisive turning point in contemporary writing, with its sociological exploration of our modern world. In 2018, his play Poussière (Dust) became part of the repertoire of the Comédie-Française. He died on 26 January 2021.
WIth Niklas Åkerfelt, Thérèse Brunnander, Per Burell, Otto Hargne, Irene Lindh, Marianne Nielsen, Andreas T. Olsson, Mikaela Ramel, Siham Shurafa, Jonas Sjöqvist
Text Lars Norén Direction Sofia Adrian Jupither Dramaturgy Anneli Dufva Set design Erlend Birkeland Lights Ellen Ruge Sound Robin Auoja Make up Peter Westerberg Assistant direction Tiina Lantz-Hirvonen French translation for surtitles Amélie Wending
Production The Royal Dramatic Theatre (Stockholm) and Jupither Josephsson Theatre Company Co-production Den Nationale Scene (Norway), Festival d’Avignon, Folkteatern i Göteborg (Sweden), Riksteatern (Sweden), Svenska Teatern i Helsingfors (Finland), Uppsala Stadsteater (Sweden) Set construction and costumes making The Royal Dramatic Theatre (Stockholm) With the support of the Swedish Institute Co-hosted Festival d'Avignon, La Chartreuse-CNES de Villeneuve lez Avignon