Julien - scarlet and black - Theater Basel - Schedule
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Julien - scarlet and black

Play by Lukas Bärfuss after Stendahl
Uraufführung/Auftragswerk

Schauspiel von Lukas Bärfuss nach dem Roman «Rot und Schwarz» von Stendhal. Altersempfehlung: ab 14 Jahren

For the first time the multiple award-winning Swiss dramatist, novelist and essayist Lukas Bärfuss, whose plays have been performed all around the world and whose novels have been translated into twenty languages, has dramatised one of the classics of world literature. Fascinated by the character of Julien he retells the story of the protagonist of Stendhal’s «Scarlet and Black».

Lukas Bärfuss: «Julien is clever, tender and beautiful. His father sends him to the priests so that they will squash him flat and he can sell him. As a tutor to the richest man in the village, the mayor. His wife is thirty but already dead. Her marriage has killed her. The only thing she can give him is her body. Now he needs a way up, he needs schemes. He quickly learns how to deceive people. By confronting people: their deviousness, their weakness. People are amazed at Julien. He can recite the Bible by heart. He finds thinking difficult. He’s been sold. He’s offended, he’s proud and he wants to get to the top. He’s got to get away from the provinces here, away from this woman. He vanishes into the bright lights of the capital, into the house of a king-maker. His daughter is looking for a plaything. She would prefer him to these airheads who flaunt themselves in front of her, the descendants of dying dynasties. He does not want to ruin his ambitions. He becomes colder and colder till the ice of his times have frozen his heart completely. And that makes him successful. The Marquis thinks a cold-blooded man will be of use to him. Julien receives his daughter’s hand. And soon he will lose his head. Because passion, evil, hot blood, semen – that produces both children and a thirst for vengeance – the old stories, the honest wounds in a false heart, or the false wounds in an honest heart, they will cost him his head, fast. What kills him? Revenge? His raw anger at being betrayed? The impossibility of love? Has he deserved it? His fate? Julien wants to remove the traitor from the mortal world by shooting her through the heart.  The judges might have overlooked  the matter if Julien’s victim hadn’t smeared that red juice all over the altar. Burning hearts, hot kisses, shooting in church! The head spinning with such nonsense ought to be cut off.»

Scarlet is the colour of passion and love. Black is the colour of the clergy and conservative politics: Julien’s fate is drawn in both colours. The world premiere will be directed by resident director Nora Schlocker, whose productions include Maxim Gorki’s «Children of the Son», «Farinet or Fake Money» by Reto Finger after Charles Ferdinand Ramuz, «Before Sunrise» by Ewald Palmets­hofer, Goethe’s «Urfaust» and most recently «The Pledge» after the novel by Dürrenmatt.

Preisstufe 4 (von 30.– bis 60.–)

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