The Hungarian Theatre of Cluj will premiere its production of Mercenaris – Corneliu Seghedi’s Gentle Touch, directed by Ioana Păun, on Saturday, May 11, at 8 pm. The performance is based on one of the winning projects submitted to the Competition for Young Theatre Directors, in 2017, being the third such proposal staged by the theatre.
The concept of the production was created by an interdisciplinary team, assembled and staged by director Ioana Păun, who has studied the meeting point of war and pornography through several theatrical languages. According to the script written by the director and co-author Mona Bozdog, we are in 2001 shortly after the 9/11 attacks. A group of 10-year-olds are listening to their history professor's speech. Mr. Seghedi talks to them zealously about his passion for America, about the war on terror, and takes pictures of them with Rambo. But what the teacher fundamentally forgets is to explain to them what powerlessness means.
18 years later, all six children meet in the small town where they grew up. They turn against one another until they finally destroy each other. 6 young people who - wherever they might find themselves - know only one rule: to defend yourself is to attack.
According to director Ioana Păun, the performance centers on the story of how society treats two soldiers who had fought in Afghanistan. One is glorified, the other has fallen. “The whole play is based on the glory and decay of these two people, who return home to a small town in Transylvania. They meet the community, which actually manages to slowly rid them from the identity they now have. We talk a lot about what conservatism means in society and in theatre as such. The performance has two planes: that of a story that unfolds on stage, and another, that takes place behind it and is visible. Hence, the two worlds that we are trying to draw closer to us.”
Set design: Ciprian Mureșan; costume design: Maria Guță, music: Sillyconductor (Cătălin Matei), assistant to the director: Róbert Kocsis. The script was written by Ioana Păun and Mona Bozdog.
Subsequent performances: Sunday, May 12; Sunday, June 9 and Thursday, June 13, at 8 pm.
Tickets can be purchased at the theater's ticket office and online at www.biletmaster.ro.
Age recommendation: 16+!