“forte forte” and Alvis Hermanis open “Riga 2014” theatre programme

“forte forte” and Alvis Hermanis open “Riga 2014” theatre programme
Publicitātes foto . Gundars Āboliņš playing in „Tēvi” (Fathers)
Contemporary theater program “forte forte”, organized by the New Theatre Institute of Latvia, is a series of year-long program of lead European director play productions included in the thematic division “Freedom Street” of “Rīga 2014”. The program is opened with a week dedicated to the Latvian director Alvis Hermanis from January 25 to February 1, and the audience is invited to see plays “Späte Nachbarn” (Late Neighbours) and “Fathers”, produced in Munich and Vienna and the documentary “Vairāk nekā dzīve” (More than life), as well as to participate in conversations about Hermanis’ theater.

These artists are world renowned because of their unique characteristic style, and the plays focus on the relations between an individual and power, personality and masses, as well as us in the background of significant historic events and also in the context of the mundane everyday life.

The play  “Späte Nachbarn” (Late Neighbours), based on the literature of Isaac Bashevis Singer, directed by Hermanis in the Munich Chamber Theatre, is the second work of this director that relates to the important Yiddish writer and Nobel Prize Winner of 1978. Like many Yiddish intellectuals, Singer too was forced to leave the Old World and go to the USA. The journey to the New World and the life there are often reflected in Singer’s works. That is what “Late Neighbours” is about – two of the author’s stories put on stage. The play has received great appreciation because of the distinguished actor ensemble Barbara Nüsse and André Jung (two times recognized as the best actor of the German theatre), but Hermanis transforms Singer’s stories into theatre language in another one of his performances - “Secrets of Kabbalah” in Cologne and Riga. On 25 January, at 19:00 pm, and on 26 January, at 18:00 pm, the production of the play “Späte Nachbarn” (Late Neighbours) will take place at the film studio “Rīgas kinostudija”.


Latvian, Russian and German artists collaborate in the production of “Fathers” of “Burgtheater Wien”. It is not like the anecdote, but rather like a delicate story of fathers and sons, where actors play out their memories on stage. „I have my own sons and my father is still alive, and I am certain that the relationship between a father and a son is one of the most mysterious things in the world”, says the director Alvis Hermanis. The three co-authors and actors of “Fathers” Gundars Āboliņš, Juris Baratinskis and Oliver Stokowski talk about themselves and their fathers. They remember as sons, but talk as actors, thus drawing a link between theatre and instinct, art and life, and revealing how they became who they are now. Their stories are touching, funny, scary, sad, but always full of profound love. The production of the play “Fathers” will take place at the film studio “Rīgas kinostudija” on 30 and 31 January and on 1 February, at 19:00 pm.

The film “Vairāk nekā dzīve” (More than life) is a documentary evidence of Alvis Hermanis' working method in theatre, staging performances in Latvia and Germany. It is a story of characters from the New Riga Theatre, German theatres Münchner Kammerspiele and Schauspiel Köln performances and their real life prototypes.

The film gives an insight into Hermanis' theatre, based on his collective work with the actors, seeking answers to the questions whether real life is more interesting than its transformation into theatre and why does the director decides to give up the method he created.

The film follows the making of Hermanis' performances “Vectēvs”, “Kölner Affäre” and “Ruf der Wildnis”. The director and script writer of the film is Gints Grūbe, cameraman -  Andrejs Rudzāts, sound producer - Normunds Kļaviņš, and the producer - Inese Boka Grūbe (“Mistrus Media”). The premiere of the film will take place at the cinema “Splendid Palace” on 28 January, at 19:00 pm.


To explain the theatrical standpoint of Alvis Hermanis in the contemporary European theatre and to learn more about the working method of the director, the public are invited to discussions about Hermanis' theatre at the small hall of the New Riga Theatre on 31January and 1 February. Directors of theatre festivals and houses, theatre academics, critics, dramatists, actors and set designers from different European countries, who have studied the theatre of Alvis Hermanis or participated in its creation, will take part in the discussions. The conversation between Gints Grūbe and Alvis Hermanis will take place on the morning of 1 February.

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