THE SOUND OF SILENCE
People in the Soviet socialist republic of Latvia in 1968 dreamed of peace and freedom, and used makeshift radios to listen to outlawed Western pop music.
In this play, which has no spoken dialogue, director Alvis Hermanis imagines the impact provoked by the cancellation of Simon & Garfunkel concert to be presented in Latvia. The Sound of Silence is a hair-raising theatrical object, a colourful and exuberant choral work that strings together performances and theatrical imagery to the strains of Mrs. Robinson and other songs by the celebrated duo. In an apartment whose walls have been removed, these golden oldies underscore the turmoil in a community of men and women frantic for freedom. Mischievous and poetic, one tableau follows another, recreating with humour and tenderness the era of flower power, restoring meaning to that time of struggle but without ever lapsing into political sloganeering or lyricism. Culturally nourished by Brecht and the Russian theatre, this spiritual descendant of Charlie Chaplin is a bold, lucid artist. Alvis Hermanis believes in theatre that is anchored in history and society and, with this play, brilliantly proves that humour and derision have greater impact than rousing speeches.
Direction : Alvis Hermanis
Performers : Guna Zarina, Sandra Zvigule, Inga Alsina, Liena Šmukste, Iveta Pole, Regina Razuma, Jana Čivžele,, Gatis Gaga, Kaspars Znotinš, Edgars Samitis, Ivars Krasts, Varis Pinkis, Girts Kruminš, Andris Keišs
Music : Simon and Garfunkel
Set and Costume Design : Monika Pormale
Production: Nouveau Théâtre de Riga (Riga)
Coproduction : Spielzeit’Europa / Berliner Festpiele (Allemange)
In association with Usine C & Carrefour international de théâtre de Québec
Text: Stéphane Lépine
EnglishTranslation: Neil Kroetsch
Photos: Gints Malderis