Thursday, June 3, 2010

RIDE ACROSS LAKE CONSTANCE

Follow
summapolitico on Twitter

LINK TO MAIN HANDKEDRAMA.SCRIPTMANIA SITE








  INDEX PAGES FOR HANDKE BLOGS

http://
handke-watch.blogspot.com/2010/05/index-page-for-this-and-all-other.html

http://handke-drama.blogspot.com/2010/05/index-page-for-this-and-all-other.html

http://
handke-discussion.blogspot.com/2010/05/index-page-for-this-and-all-other.html

http://
handke-trivia.blogspot.com/2010/05/index-page-for-this-and-all-other.html

http://
handke--revista-of-reviews.blogspot.com/2010/05/index-page-for-handke-revista-of.html


http://
 handke-scholar.blogspot.com/2010/05/index-page-for-handke-scholar-and-all.html

http://
 handke-yugo.blogspot.com/2010/05/links-page-for-pages-of-this-blog.html
  


During my 1957 Junior Year semester in Berlin I attended theater each and every night and saw all the performances at the Ensemble, but never experienced a catharsis of any kind, Aristotelean or non.(It was a threesome of Fred James, Ralph Langbacka who became a famous Finnish director and I).
 However, each performance, done in the Brechtian style, no matter whether of a Brecht play or, say, Synge, even Johannes R. Becher’s STALINSCHLACHT, was exquisitely aesthetic, beautiful to the point of being painful!
   About ten years later I became the translator of all of Peter Handke’s early plays up until the early 80s WALK ABOUT THE VILLAGES, and directed the earliest performances of them in New York, and worked with some excellent people on these texts, Herbert Berghof at his HB Studio and E.G. Marshall, and Peter Brook, and thus knew how all these plays worked, what effect they had on an audience: these plays were all what might best be termed happenings, formalized, musically formed, experience pieces, but for RIDE ACROSS LAKE CONSTANCE. I had translated it but hadn’t the faintest what its effect might be, or even what it was, the piece has no story of any kind, though it made you seek to find one in the arc of its events – a lack of story that the premiere audience, used to securely strap hang on to a story, found most upsetting; it’s highpoint is when the actors celebrate “that the drawer is stuck. Let it be stuck.” (Handke’s way of singing the Beatle’s LET IT BLEED)
 In the early 70s there was its premiere at the Vivian Beaumont at Lincoln Center under direction of Carl Weber, Jules Irving head of theater. I briefly had a full time – and I mean full time with Suhrkamp’s output - job as agent for Handke’s publisher Suhrkamp Verlag & weekends was out of town, so did not attend a single rehearsal, and thus was virgin at the premiere. With what is occurring on stage – actors pretending to be famous film actors from the thirties, waking up from dreams, constantly quibbling over verbal distinctions, sinister matters such as a pair of twins grabbing at genitals -  superficially LAKE CONSTANCE might remind you of an absurdist Ionesco piece. Subsequent to the performance I felt absolutely marvelous. I don’t recall what my bright and beautiful date felt or said, but Max Frisch, the Suhrkamp author whom and his wife Marianne I had taken along, and who had pronounced Handke’s KASPAR the play of his (fatherless) generation was extremely angry and upset, and I regret that I failed to inquire why (perhaps there is a diary entre?).

Subsequently I attended it might be just ten minute of just about every performance, like an addict to get jut a brief “hit” of what was more than the ordinary magic of theatricality of the opium of LAKE CONSTANCE. The experience was filed away as unique.      About ten years later I did a psychoanalysis. Occasionally there would be a session subsequent to which during my five mile walk downtown in Manhattan and for the rest of the day I felt equally marvelous as I had ten years prior after the performance of LAKE CONSTANCE. In both instances the processing, the cleansing of unpleasant matters, had been subliminal, the sum of the experience, the relief, and you could only point to the sum. (No doubt a neurologist could point out the activity in a brain.)
What the two experiences had in common was something that Richard Gilman, author of THE MAKNIG OF MODERN THEATER, and first serious American theater person to write about Handke’s stage pieces, felt had something to do with Wittgenstein’s PHILOSOPHICAL INVESTIGATIONS, the constant distinctions being made, the reiteration of them. However, Dick, who became a good friend over Handke, had not EXPERIENCED the piece! To be subjected to a subtle onslaught of distinctions of that kind, in the most playful of manners, BREAKS DOWN the logicalness of the world – it DOES NOT say anything about the world, whether it is logical or not, but your defenses disappear, and when your defenses disappear you are no longer in a state of fear. Sublime. That is how Handke achieves CATHARSIS in LAKE CONSTANCE & in HOUR WE KNEW NOTHING OF EACH OTHER, where the the SUCCESSSION of one magical image after the other breaks down the customary defenses and which Steve Pearson directed at the UW drama school in the later 90s.

http://handke-drama.blogspot.com/2012/01/how-handkes-ride-across-lake-constance.html

No comments:

Post a Comment

this blog is moderated, if you are a chinese pornogropher, a soap salesmen or the ghost of ronald reagan, don't even bother trying me.

PIECES AND NEWS ABOUT PETER HANDKE'S PLAYS

THIS BLOG IS DEVOTED TO PIECES AND NEWS ABOUT PETER HANDKES PLAYS, IT LINKS WITH THE FOLLOWING SITES:
http://www.handkelectures.freeservers.com
[the drama lecture]

http://www.handkeDRAMA.scriptmania.com
http://www.handkeDRAMA-2.scriptmania.com
WHICH ARE PART OF THE
http://www.handke.scriptmania.com
COMPLEX OF THIRTEEN SITES

favorite author

Search This Blog

Followers