“Pai Sam-Sik […] invites readers and spectators to confront a deep trauma of his nation, one that scarred the spirit of an entire continent. His 1945 is an act of remembrance and moral judgement”.
Translation: Eleni Mitsakou
Direction: Chryssa Kapsouli
Dramaturgy: Nikos Ziogas:, Chryssa Kapsouli, Giannis Tsaparegas
Music-Performer: Christos Karanatsis
Set: Spyros Gekas
Director Assistant: Spyros Betsis
Actors - performers: Ioannis Athanassopoulos, Spyros Varelis, Efi Venianaki, Vaggelis Vogiatzis, Polixeni Thanou, Christos Karanatsis, Evanthia Kourmouli, Niki Sereti, Ilias-Aris Topaloglou, Giannis Tsaparegas.
In August 1945, after the atomic bomb in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan is forced to capitulate and thus virtually ends the Second World War. Japan is abandoning its conquests, including Manchuria and Korea. Manchuria in the period 1945-1946 passes to the Russians while there are Chinese troops in many regions. After 1946 Manchuria was permanently owned by North China.
The play of Korean writer Pai Sam-Shik «1945» runs late autumn 1945 until summer of 1946, initially at a Korean re-center (camp) in a city of Manzhuria and, at the end, in Seoul. Korean men, women and children, after the liberation of their country, are waiting in Changchun for the return home train. After the inhuman treatment by the Japanese conquerors, the exiles and the deprivation from their language, the Koreans now are working hard for the Russians to manage secure the return ticket.
In this transitional phase of waiting, the struggle for surviving, insecurity, impoverishment, hard work, cold, hunger, illness, personal problems and the urgent need to return to a free homeland, reveal the hard face of people but also tenderness and solidarity born in pain and misery. Is there a new life for everyone in Seoul?
WON-CHANG: They owed a store downtown. They were friendly. They always gave my children candy. Seeing the way she spoke and carried herself, I’d never thought she was a Korean. She always wore a kimono with an obi around her waist.
JANG: So she was a turncoat through and through!
MAN-CHEOL: Then she should have pretended until the end!
JANG: She ended up speaking in Korean when people took turns beating her up.
YEONG-HO: But why was she there?
JANG: She came out of hiding to get on the train. She paid off the Russian soldiers to get a place on the train, but the Mindian people caught her. […]
MYEONG-SUK: She and I are clean. It’s your eyes that are dirty. You should wash your eyes clean, but I don t think you can.
YEONG-HO: What do you mean my eyes are dirty?
MYEONG-SUK: Understand us? You’ll never understand. Through no fault or ours, we were put through hell, but no hell could make us dirty. But if we stand in front of you, we’ll always be dirty. So we’ re going to go our way.
YEONG-HO: I’m trying to help you.
MYEONG-SUKl: I don’t need your help.
YEONG-HO: Just leave that Japanese woman behind and you can go with us.
MYEONG-SUK: We’ve been through hell together. You have no idea what kind of hell it was. But there were moments...good moments like a dream. And Mitsuko was in that dream. She is the only one who knows the hell that I’ve been through.
Since his first work The Tale of the White Circle (1998), writer Pai Sam –Shik became one of the most popular playwrights in contemporary Korea with works of various genres, including original and adapted plays, Korean traditional opera and musicals. His plays delve into philosophical themes such as raison d'etre and wounds and healing with simple and concrete words, which influences audience greatly over a long time span.
He won the Daesan Literary Award and Dong·A Theater Awards with Yeolha Ilgi Manbo (2007), the KIM Sang-yul Play Awards with Gertrude (2008), the Dong·A Theater Awards with The White Cherry (2009), as well as the Cha Bum-suk Play Awards with The Woman from Far Away (2015). Currently, he is working as a professor at the Department of Creative Writing, Dongduk Women's University.
Even the Far East can feel closer
In this unique “Focus Asia” Programme, we celebrate the great playwrights of a continent in which theatre is always somewhere between tradition and innovation, between a remote past and an immediate present, between myth and reality. Indeed, the inspirations and values at the core of contemporary Asian playwriting are so profound because they derive from this series of paradoxes.
Like a haiku or a Murakami novel, The Bee by Hideki Noda is mysterious and provocative, a true journey into the unknown. To discover it is simply a cultural revelation. In a text staged by thousands of directors and widely regarded as the masterpiece of twentieth century Chinese drama, Secret Love in Peach Blossom Land, Stan Lai creates the atmosphere of a theatrical tale like no other. It is a play within a play within a play... about love, history and identity. Pai Sam-Shik, a Korean master of dramatic craft, invites readers and spectators to confront a deep trauma of his nation, one that scarred the spirit of an entire continent. His «1945» is an act of remembrance and moral judgement. Three plays, there authors, three artistic universes... One single principle, underlying the Readings and Conferences of “Focus Asia”: in theatre, through theatre, even the Far East can feel closer. [OCTAVIAN SAIU]
CURATOR «FOCUS ON ASIA»
Adjunct Secretary General of the International Association of Theatre Critics (IATC), President of the Romanian Section-Theatre Studies of IATC.
Octavian Saiu is a scholar and professional theatre critic.
He holds a PhD in Theatre Studies from National University of Theatre and Film (NUTF) in Romania, with a thesis about theatrical space, and another one in Comparative Literature from the University of Otago in New Zealand, with a thesis about Samuel Beckett and Eugène Ionesco. He completed his Post-Doc in Modern Literature at the University of Otago, and has been awarded his Habilitation in Theatre and Performing Arts. He teaches in the Postgraduate Programme of NUTF, the Doctoral School of Sibiu University and the Centre of Excellence in Visual Studies of the University of Bucharest. He was Visiting Fellow at the University of London, School of Advanced Study, and is currently Visiting Professor at universities in Tokyo, Hong Kong and Lisbon. He has offered master classes at other universities in Europe and Asia, as well as the Grotowski Institute.
He has been actively involved, as Conference Chair and Invited Speaker, in several major theatre and academic events in North America, Australasia and Europe, including the Theatre Olympics and Edinburgh International Festival, where he was Chair of the Samuel Beckett Conference in 2013. Since 2004 he has been Chair of the Conferences of Sibiu International Theatre Festival.
He has published academic articles in several international journals, as well as nine books on theatre. He received the Critics’ Award in 2010 and the Award of the Union of Theatre Artists (UNITER) in 2013. His most recent publication in English is the monograph, Hamlet and the Madness of the World (2016).
Analogio Festival, member of EFA/EFFE (European Festivals Association/ Europe for Festivals- Festivals for Europe), a successful institution dedicated to the theatre and contemporary writing, is organized for the 15th continual year, 21- 27 September 2018.
Analogio Festival 2018
Artistic Director: Sissy Papathanasiou
Translations: Jacques Bouchard, Gina Karvounaki, Eleni Mitsakou, Sissy Papathanasiou, Nadia Foskolou.
Curators: Focus Asia: Octavian Saiu. Outdoor Activities: Geert Vermeire / the milena principle
Production support: Despina Errikou
Assistant Production Managers: Cybele Dragoumi, Vera Nikolopoulos
Creative Team: Eleni Mitsakou, Anna Gourzi, Gina Karvounaki, Despina Kosmopoulou, Smaro Kotsia
Programme editing: Smaro Kotsia
Photographers: Frank James Johnson, Cybele Dragoumi, Giannis Priftis
Set and Costume design: Ζoe Molivda Fameli
Lighting: Ζoe Molivda Fameli, Stella Kaltsou
Graphic design : A4Artdesign
Internet site: media42.eu
Press Officer: Aris Asproulis, Maria Konstandopoulou
Under the auspices
Hellenic Ministry of Culture and Sports
International Theatre Institute ITI, 2018-The year of ITI
With the kind support
THE J. F. COSTOPOULOS FOUNDATION || Aikaterini Laskaridis Foundation || Embassy of Israel in Greece || Embassy of Switzerland in Greece || Embassy of Greece in South Africa || Finnish Institute at Athens || The Hanoch Levin Institute of Israeli Drama || EFA/EFFE (European Festivals Association) || GREECE all time classic || Greek Art Theatre Karolos Koun || Municipal Theatre of Piraeus || Stathmos Theatre || TAF|The Art Foundation || The milena principle || NEAP-ITI Worldwide Inter-Europe Artist Exchange project || Drama School Dilos || Athens Conservatoire Drama School || Blue–Workshop for art and communication || Radisson Blu Park hotel || All About Festivals || Greek Play Project