Histrionics, a play by one of the most important contemporary playwrights, the Austrian Thomas Bernhard, directed by Alexandru Dabija and starring Marcel Iureș in the title role, is a paradoxical hymn devoted to the theatrical art, but also a caustic look at our petty and tragicomic lives.
Playing the part of Bruscon, Marcel Iureș gives life, in a caustic and absurd quasi-monologue, to a splendid buffoon in search of the absolute in art. A megalomaniac, misanthropic, hypochondriac, nihilistic and intemperate actor, author and director, Bruscon bursts into tirades against the mediocrity of his country, rants about everything from politics, society, theatre - which Bruscon claims to loathe -, rages against the conditions he is offered because nothing and no one lives up to his artistic ambitions, and especially his family, with whom he behaves tyrannically.
The characters who support him (played by Alexandru Bindea, Ana Ciontea, Alexandra Sălceanu, Lucian Iftime, Afrodita Androne and Victoria Dicu) are grotesque, almost caricatural, often ridiculous, endowed with the ability to arouse feelings of rejection and hilarity in the audience, but behind the caricature hides the pessimism of the writer Thomas Bernhard, convinced that this humanity has no chance of salvation.
Histrionics is an extraordinary text, full of rage, despair, aggressiveness, disillusionment, but also black humor, which Alexandru Dabija himself staged at the Act Theatre in 2001, also with Marcel Iureș in the main role, is now revived at the National Theatre in Bucharest, with Marcel Iureș, this time at the age of this ridiculous and tragic character in equal measure.
Alexandru Dabija (February 13, 1955) is one of the best known and awarded theater directors in Romania. His name is associated with dozens of famous theatrical creations, not only in Romania.
He graduated from the Institute of Theater and Film from Bucharest, Theater Faculty, Department of Theater Directing. From 1976 until now, he has directed over 60 theater performances, at the most important theaters in Bucharest (National Theatre, Odeon Theatre, L.S. Bulandra Theatre, ACT Theatre, Nottara Theatre, Jewish Theatre), but also in the most important Romanian cities (Cluj, Brasov, Iasi, Piatra Neamț, Ploiesti, Oradea, etc.), including the most important classical and contemporary playwrights (Shakespeare, Chekhov, Ionesco, O'Neill, Molière, Goldoni, Gogol, Beckett, Boicev, Visniec).
He staged theatre shows in Berlin, Porto and Brussels, with successful international productions (The Boss Grady's Boys by Sebastian Barry, Cehov ... a la Russe after A.P. Cehov, Saragosa – 66 days, after 'The Manuscript Found in Saragosa' by Jan Potocki). He directed several TV theatre shows, for the Romanian National Television.
He held workshop with directors from Scotland at Youth Lothian Theatre (1995); Simultaneous Macbeth – workshop with Romanian and British actors in Bucharest, Leicester – England and Glasgow – Scotland (1993); Mosaique – workshop with Belgium and Romanian actors in La Marlagne-Belgium (1992).
He was General Manager of the Odeon Theater Bucharest, between 1991–1994 and 1996–2002.
He was awarded numerous times: Best Director in Romania for 'New Way To Pay Old Debts' by Ph. Massinger, Youth Theater Piatra Neamț (1976), The Critics Award for the Best Director in Romania for 'Typhoon' by Cao Yu, Nottara Theater Bucharest ( 1988), The Critics Award for the Best Director in Romania for 'Le Festin du Balthasar' by Benjamin Fondane, Nottara Theater Bucharest (1990); Best performance in Romania-UNITER for 'Zhao the Orphan' by Ji Jun-Xiang, Youth Theater Piatra Neamț (1995 ); Best director at the National Comedy Festival, Galati, for Ionesco’s 'Five Sketches' (2007); UNITER Award Nomination for Best performance and best director (2008); National Award for Art, section Theater granted by the Ministry of Culture (2008); UNITER Award for Best director for the performance 'Pyramus & Thisbe 4 You' (2010); UNITER Excellence Award (1995), The UNITER Award for radio theater.