The production of Vatre | Focs (Fires) is a joint venture between Yugoslav Drama Theatre and the National Theatre of Catalonia in Barcelona. The eponymous novel by Marguerite Yourcenar was adapted for the stage by Maria Velasco (born in Spain in 1984), the author of several plays and the recipient of a number of significant literary and theatre awards. The production is directed by Carme Portaceli, one of the leading theatre directors in Europe and the artistic director of the National Theatre of Catalonia in Barcelona. This production is part of a larger project by the Union of Theatres of Europe where fifteen of the most important theatres are brought together in various co-productions. In one year, seven co-productions will be completed with scheduled performances at the Finisterra Festival held at the National Theatre in Porto (Portugal) in February 2023. In this project, Yugoslav Drama Theatre will be working together with the National Theatre of Catalonia from Barcelona.
Fires by Marguerite Yourcenar
The work we present here is inspired by Fires, by Marguerite Yourcenar. It is a very free approach to the original text, as it only takes the main theme, heartbreak, and some of the mythical characters chosen by Yourcenar to explore this concept: Phaedra, Achilles, Antigone, Mary Magdalene and Clytemnestra. However, the two main female characters, an alter ego of Yourcenar herself and Sappho, are an original creation, as the situations and the dramatic plot. Sentences or short paragraphs from Yourcenar's novel are quoted, but never long fragments. Therefore, this free theatrical version takes the novel only as a springboard, to establish, from today's perspective, with many references to the 21st century, new parallels between the ideals of love and mythology. There are also some nods to Yourcenar's biography and a certain influence of her literary style, but not a direct translation of the novel. Maria Velasco
Photo: Nebojsa Babic
Union des Théâtres de l'Europe gathered, in the last 3 decades, some of the most important European theatres and artists. Through festivals, exhibitions, exchanges, masterclasses, cooperation projects, the UTE help create a continuous flow between West and East, between generations, between tradition and innovation. Our celebration is inspired by this rich history. With the help of the Interferences International Theatre Festival, we wish to remember some of the best performances presented at past editions of the UTE festival and look forward to new horizons.