REVIEWS - EXCEPTS:
MOSTOVI - SEPTEMBER ISSUE 2005
Contemporary art increases its presence on stage in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Disregarding that many would say they don´t recognise and they don´t acknowledge it as an art, still it´s her and in its practice changes the dominant cultural models and ways of thinking. This art lives and reflects the time we live in, opens up for communication to the outer world, uses and explores new medias and art forms, puts questions, deals with social traumas and demystifies traditional conception of art. ...its speaks its own authentic language that is not just local. ...This musical play, who´s ringleader is Marlene Kaminsky from International Theatre Cross Roads is set form the 2-6 September at the location of Vrbas barracks - recently given to the university of Banja Luka.
What is in the Mirror? Is definitely different, unpredictable and nothing like the `polished plays that we so far witnessed. All you need is to free your mind and go for it!
It is not all that often that you really get to touch the development of anything positive in Bosnia and Herzegovina. This country is a paradise of broken promises, continual international community failures and it?s without doubt the epicentre of world conspiracy theories. No one can relay on or trust anyone else. Selfishness reigns supreme. So it was with wariness that I opted to take up an invitation to witness the fruits of an arts project that was to take place in a former Bosnian Seb army barracks, the new home for Banja Luka University.
The event was organised by London based International Theatre Crossroads, who had raised the funding required to train the performers as well as coming up with the concept and production of the evening... . only in Bosnia can you sit in a theatre next to people sit in tracksuits, unshaven and with bad body odour waiting to answer the mobile phones during the performance. Thank god Kevin Spacey is not theatrical director in this city. His recent outburst in London would cause him to experience fatal cardiac arrest here. So here I was in what was a munitions storage room, in the back row, sat on an uncomfortable former primary school chair in front of a stack of loudspeakers. A basic stage faced me with four large boxes with the lids shot. There was a portable mixer for sound and lighting and an air of expectations... . I found five young actors/actresses, three dancers and a musician using body language and emotions to take me through the performance instead of traditional dialogue. Alfredo Genovesi and Lewis Gibson, two visiting artists from London ... created the supporting `sound scapes`, which would add to the impact of the piece as it unfolded. ...as in terms of theatre and especially contemporary theatre, this `cross-discipline´ is something that will defiantly catch people´s attention Outside the munitions room after the performance had ended a large number of spectator remained behind discussing intently the meanings of what they had witnessed. Typical `arty types´ I thought, but as I walked back through the deserted army barracks I realised I was among young people, who were part of the silent Cultural Revolution that most of the country is not aware is taking place.
Bosnia needs more involvement form people like Marlene Kaminsky. People who really want to help Bosnia by giving up time to force open windows onto the future.
NEVAVISNE - 04.09.2004
The citizen of Banja Luka had for the first time the chance to see a show of Devised Theatre, which took as its theme the recognition of identity and was interpreted through the richness of movement, music and dance.
The audience was touched by the energy, creativity and sense of improvisation... .
The dynamic of the performance asked the audience to make a decision of which character to follow at any given time, as stories were criss-crossing. Each performer had his or her story, which were at times overlapping.
Individual snap shots connected with scenes and phases of transformation that carried the story further and forced the characters to show their truth...
The emotional whirlpool of the performance was supported by the usage of the space where the audience and actors are in constant communications... .What Marlene Kaminsky hoped for the show, came true, as the audience truly were activated and emotional engaged.
NEZAVISNE - 07.09.2005
...The scenes are not in traditional chronological order, but intersected. The theatre show could be compared with a jazz concert where every perform has the freedom to express themselves within a frame of the same rhythm.
What is new about this project is the fact that it is devised theatre where all group members were involved in building the narrative through a process of discovery... .The performances will have a different ending each night as the last ten minutes will be improvise... the show engages the audience to explore the emotional world of their subconscious.
Because of the great interest the theatre show ...Who is in the mirror? The company will have one extra performance due to popular demand. Till now more than 300 people came to see the show over the 5 nights. The idea to apply to theatre festival came from the positive reaction of the audience and in particular acting colleague from the National Theatre in Banja Luka...there is great hope that the show will perform in Bosnia, Croatia, Serbia and Monte Negro...
(Translated from Serbo-Croatian by Dijana Skondric)