ESSAY


Kaća ČELAN

TRAVELOGUE OF AN EXCITED SPECTATOR

“Maska i pokret” Iva Kostović-Mandić i Petar Mandić; *1)
“Neko je ubio pjesmu”, one-act play with masks *2)

On the occasion of the premiere at the Gallery of Modern Art Collegium Artisticum, Sarajevo 12.12.1980.

Curious people break through dirty and cold Sarajevo night to nestle on the red chairs of sterile design in the Collegium Artisticum, which is always open to all art lovers: the only space in the city where youth earns a living in theatre.
When they taste the bar and the guests who are fed by its contents, their eyes see a spacious closed square at the end of which white screens are separated by four black fluttering cloths – the entire scenography of the play with a puppet and masks “Somebody has killed a Play”. *3)

Nowhere poster to refer to the play, no program, no one to control explicitly invited; only the serene keeper of the mausoleum of art, duller than his mythical prototype Kerber, legitimises connoisseurs with a trained gaze. With “is it here?”, they shyly walk past him, and when they find themselves in the performance area, they observe it politely as a giant triptych ordered from a distant country where something is still believed and would go back to the bar, because who knows when this is going to happen, and they better come when it all starts, because one could never be clear with the avant-garde.

Rustles, murmurs, whispers, everyone is already there: a young doctor with his lovely wife carefully inquires about the duration of the play (he is preparing a specialisation so he would not be able to set aside more than an hour for culture); Yugoslav rock star of an ageing face who turns like a weather vane determining the direction of movement of fragrant girls, squeezes down his throat a compromised half-whisper: “Does anyone take off their clothes in the play?” And when he gives it the weight of his stupidity, he says a somewhat more honest and engaged phrase: “It’s good that things like this happen.” The stage space doesn’t suit a girl who measures the length of a spent film strip on television: she would like the stage to be further away from the audience, for everything to happen somewhere very far away, so that while it is happening she can tell her friend the laments of the newlywed widow Yoko Ono. The editor of a radio program with two children in her hands: “Children love masks and puppets, it is a harmless form of presentation, close to their age,” says to her dramaturge friend, who by mistake forgot her son at home. Beside them, the moustachioed and sceptical theatrologist expresses his doubts about the possibility of reviving ancient Greek dramaturgy with such theatrical means as masks, which are animated on a dubious musical template, and it would be better if these young enthusiasts base their research on Craig’s theoretical implications rather than “crying for Hecuba”. The old painter-traditionalist, who loves youth above all, expects that this moving exhibition at whose opening he arrived will give him enough inspiration to take part in a long polemical conversation after the show and shake off all the remaining heat of the former threatening artistic fire. *4)

Everyone settled in nicely: the birds on the red warm nests were left to the soothing buzz of neon. Someone coughed significantly, the neon disappeared and two old-fashioned spotlights of the gift-loan of a rich and generous older theatre brother – an institution that cares for everyone – came on. The stingy light as a candle of life, just enough for the show to start, and exciting, trembling silence presses all the openings through which art enters a person.

The performance begins!!!
The performance, therefore, begins.

Old Bach, like a forgotten noble stepfather, “spreads his hanging gardens in the air.” The central black curtain moves and servilely lets the main character, the puppet AGAVA – a “giant camellia that burns and trembles” – enters the stage.
A beautiful plaster face resembling an embalmed Jean-Louis Barrot stopped in the instant of great stage cognition, a pompous body dressed in a robe of royal colours and on it the gentle female hands moving a flock of paper birds. Agava approaches the middle of the stage with gentle sweeps, drops the dead birds from hands, and ritually sprinkles them with earth. Humus generously slips out of the dead plaster hands and covers the birds.

With this prelude, the history of the tragic fate of divine Agava could have been sealed with stage metaphor in a theatre with a good tradition, but Bach disappears and with violent rhythm, the ancient Greek instruments are breaking through, pushing KASTOR on stage, who wears a uniform on his back, his burden, his identity. Kastor crawls on the floor, bypasses Agava, and when he hides behind her indifference, he gets up and resolutely puts on his uniform. And now he is great and inviolable; the nasal face strikes the sky, foreshadowed modelled mouth forms a lustful spasm that spreads to the body and unbridled extremities. The one who wears the uniform is in an injured ecstasy, so he would revenge, he would fertilise. He presses Agava against the central black curtain and she swallows them instantly. Together with them, the music disappears from the stage for a moment, and then it reappears, presenting the sweetness of the feast behind the curtain and enticing the TWO OLD WOMEN on stage, to testify about it with their ominous poking.

One is blue and the other green; the rude family of the harsh father Hieronymus Bosch. When they hop away their dance, short as a video ad that propagates primordial evil, they quickly disappear in one of the black openings, because Agava comes on the stage again. She staggers back and falls facing the audience with her base – an open abyss at the bottom of which her head gapes. There is silence, because Agave’s position is extremely expressive, equal to the contrapposto.

Now the ancient Greek music is dissolving and the green-haired beauty KALA is peeking through the black curtain on Agava. She helps gives birth to premature ERIF, her brother by eros, and embarks on an enchanting love dance with him. They bury Mother Agava by covering her with a black cover and leave. The sounds begin to roll, sharply and clearly, and with them, KARLO the dustman, white as snow, comes on stage to clean up all the dirt and disease that his colleagues-predecessors spread on the stage.
The work brings him to Agava, a strange scrap that confuses and softens him, all accompanied by nostalgic music of preludes (Bach). But since his job does not permit such outbursts, after indulging in gentle plaster hands, Karlo leaves the stage, carrying Agava with him.

Old women come again to mark Karlo’s invisible work, and after them, the transformed Kastor, promoted with a decorative piece of Agava’s clothes, as an insignia. He finds the birds and places them on the broom-tree, which Karlo left to the play as a testament, playing around with offered symbolism. That’s how Agava founds him, who returns to insist on contact for the first time: stumbling upon the first who dares to obscure her divine beauty. Kastor defends himself with offers, but in vain – he is forced to behead her, thus completing the act of mutilation.

And together with his accomplice Karlo, he erects a monument to her by the tree. This feast of repentant beasts is interrupted by a new character, DOUBLE MASK (Kala and Erif), a representative of a new generation, vindictive and self-conscious: he kidnaps the mutilated head of his beautiful grandmother, destroys the monument. Karlo and Kastor retreat forever, unable to participate in an act that is alien to their stage function-character.

And for the third time, Old Women come on the stage: to eliminate the possibility of dissipate the action of a powerful, receptive evil. They remove the Double Mask wrapped in a black veil and round off their work with a gourmet scene of devouring Agava’s clothes.
And thus they foreshadowed the return of Agava, stripped to her last offshoot: astral in all its recognisability, reduced to a devastating elementality: a desire to leave the infected space with flight.

Bach circles around ears for a while, and then the neon lights up noisily and flushed cheeks and palms turn towards motionless black curtains.

Kaća ČELAN *5)

1. / “NON-INSTITUTIONAL THEATRE” /
In Skopje in December 1980, as part of the Festival of Young and Open Theatre, an intense symposium was held on the topic “Non-institutional theatres of Yugoslavia”, which failed to clarify the basic existential and aesthetic problems of “theatre outside the box”. Just as no symposium will clarify it, since they are attended and discussed (which especially offends those who are directly involved in the work of theatre groups), with people without whom these groups very much exist and operate. Namely: the groups that formed the “non-institutional theatre” have nothing to do with the institutional theatre, they are not outside it, because they never wanted to work within it; within the framework in which everything except work and research is allowed and enabled.

2. / ATTITUDE FORMATION /
The theatre group “Maska i Pokret” has united in its name the areas of its research and it is difficult for its work to be analysed limited to precise time units. As with all organically predetermined theatre MPs, so with Iva Kostović-Mandić and Petar Mandić, theatre activity began in childhood, which, as Vesna Parun writes, is to blame for everything. What has been noted in the public are two projects: the project of the dance company “Movement and Mask”, first performed publicly in the spring of 1979 on the dilapidated and extremely dangerous for the dance, attic in Dobrovoljacka Street 12 in Sarajevo (then accidentally present delegation Chinese theatre workers did not miss the opportunity to faithfully record everything that was imposed on their senses, from the appearance of masks, to the most innocuous scenographic detail) and renewed in Tjentište, at the Mladost Sutjeska event, where they amazed all present young artists with their strength and beauty and precision of performance (except those to whom vanity peeked out of their pockets). In the article dedicated to this event, the Belgrade newspaper “The Youth” wrote: “… ‘Movement and Mask’ – a free theatre group from Sarajevo, composed of theatre and non-theatre people, a group that delivers the enjoyment in, probably unseen theatre projection in our country as an occurrence of symbols ‘imprinted’ in a combination of music, movement and mask – (underlined K.Č.), enjoyment that leaves no moment for the luxury of indifference.” And below the photo showing the scene from the play, its signed: the highlight of the event.
After this, the group continues to work free of non-theatrical (better-settled) people; preparing a series of etudes (“ETUDE”, June 1980 disturbed the directional walkers of Zagreb’s Maksimir Park) in which they continue to develop the technique of making masks, adapting them to the choreographic laws of theatre-action. Also, Iva Kostović-Mandić and Petar Mandić in this period radicalised their attitude towards the stage-ballet movement by rejecting the naïve functionality of classical ballet, namely its showy purpose and directing its achievements to a specific attitude towards music: the movement animates symbols of theatrical story-plot, where the best evidence is the play “Somebody has killed the Play”.

3. / PERFORMANCE PROGRAM /
LICA: Agava, the noble Puppet;
Kastor, the one who wears a uniform;
Kala, the one who mourns;
Erif, the prematurely born;
Kala i Erif as a Double Mask;
Karlo, the dustman;
Two Women and
The One who flies.
“All things powerful, incalculable time
Brings to light and again covers with darkness.”
(Sophocles: “Aias”)

4. / OFF-SPECTATORS /
Since in this play live performers are hiding behind masks – faces benumbed for centuries, it is clear that the feed-back, i.e. the influence of the spectators on the theatrical play negligible is. Bearing in mind also the objective impossibility for such projects to be produced to the extent that is ingrained in the performances of official theatres, spectators who are lucky enough to attend such a play obey the laws of the specific collectivity. They resemble those people who greet each other on the street because they know each other from the cemetery where they visit their loved ones, whose graves are by chance in the neighbourhood. That is why they take up so much space in this text.

5. / HEY, BE YOURSELF /
The author of this travelogue did not intend to move the reader with the breadth and poetic nature of her associative fund, because she believed that such projects deserve special literary-theatrical treatment, radical in any case in relation to the current theatre critique.

ESEJ


Kaća ČELAN

PUTOPIS UZBUĐENOG GLEDAOCA

“Maska i pokret” Ive Kostović-Mandić i Petra Mandića; *1)
“Neko je ubio pjesmu”, igra s maskama u jednom dijelu *2)

Povodom premijere u galeriji moderne umjetnosti Collegium Artisticum, Sarajevo 12.12.1980.

Kroz prljavu i hladnu sarajevsku noć probijaju se radoznalci da se ugnjezde na crvene stolice sterilnog kroja u uvek i svim ljubiteljima umetnosti raskriljen Collegiura artisticum: jedini prostor u gradu u kojem mladost na pozorištu zarađuje život.
Kada opipaju bife i goste koji se napajaju njegovim sadržajem, oči ugledaju prostran zatvoren trg na čijem kraju bele paravane razdvajaju četiri crne lepršave krpe – celokupna scenografija predstave sa lutkom i maskama “Neko je ubio pjesmu”. *3)

Nigde plakata koji bi uputio na predstavu, ni programa, ni čoveka da upušta samo izričito pozvane; jedino spokojni čuvar mauzoleja umetnosti, tuplji od svog mitskog prototipa Kerbera izdresiranim pogledom legitimiše znalce. Uz “je l’ to tu?”, stidljivo promiču kraj njega, a kada se nađu na prostoru za igru, razgledaju ga učtivo kao gigantski triptih poručen iz daleke zemlje u kojoj se još uvek u nešto veruje i natrag bi u bife, jer ko zna kad će ovo, i bolje da dođu kad sve već počne, jer sa avangardom nikada nisi načisto.

Šume, šuškaju, mrmolje, šapuću, svi su već tu: mladi lekar sa dražesnom suprugom oprezno se raspituje za trajanje predstave (priprema specijalizaciju pa ne bi bio u mogućnosti da odvoji više od sat vremena za kulturu); jugoslovenska rock-zvezda zastarela lica koje se kao vetrokaz okreće određujući pravac kretanja miomirisnih cura, cedi niz grlo kompromisni polušapat: “Skida li se ko u predstavi?” I kada ga isti pridavi težinom svoje gluposti, govori nešto iskreniju i angažovaniju frazu: “Dobro je da se ovakve stvari dešavaju”. Devojci koja na televiziji meri dužinu potrošene filmske trake ne odgovara scenski prostor: ona bi da je scena udaljenija od gledališta, da se sve zbiva negde jako daleko, pa da ona dok se to zbiva može pričati svojoj prijateljici jade novopečene udovice Joko Ono. Urednica radio-programa sa dvoje dece u rukama: “Deca vole maske i lutke, to je bezazlen predstavljački oblik, blizak njihovom uzrastu”, kaže prijateljici dramaturgu, koja je omaškom zaboravila kod kuće svog sina. Kraj njih brkat i skeptičan teatrolog izražava svoje sumnje u mogućnost oživljavanja starogrčke dramaturgije takvim pozorišnim sredstvima kao što su maske, koje se animiraju na sumnjiv muzički predložak i bolje bi bilo da su ti mladi entuzijasti bazirali svoja istraživanja na Krejgovim teorijskim implikacijama nego što se trse da “plaču za Hekubom”. Stari slikar-tradicionalist koji voli mladost iznad svega, očekuje da će mu pokretna izložba na čije otvaranje je prispeo, dati dovoljno inspiracije da posle razgledanja uzme učešća u dugom polemičkom razgovoru i tu istrese sav preostali žar negdašnje preteće umetničke vatre. *4)

Svi su se lepo smestili: ptice na crvenim toplim gnezdima prepuštene uspavljujućem zujanju neona. Neko se značajno nakašljao, iščezao je neon i upalila se dva starinska reflektora poklon-zajam bogatog i darežljivog starijeg brata – institucije koja brine za sve. Škrta svetlost kao sveća života, tek toliko da predstava može da krene i uzbudljiva, treperava tišina pritišće sve otvore na koje umetnost ulazi u čoveka.

Počinje predstava!!!
Predstava, dakle, počinje.

Stari Bach kao zaboravljeni plemeniti očuh “razastire svoje viseće vrtove po zraku”. Središna crna zavesa se pomiče i servilno propušta na scenu glavnu junakinju, lutku AGAVU – “divovsku kameliju što bukti i treperi”.
Prelepo gipsano lice nalik na balzamovanog Žan Luj Baroa, zaustavljeno u tranutku velike scenske spoznaje, pompezno telo obučeno u halju kraljevskih boja i na njemu blage ženske ruke premeću jato papirnatih ptica. Agava se nežnim zamasima primiče sredini scene, ispušta iz ruku mrtve ptice i ritualno ih posipa zemljom. Iz premrtvih gipsanih ruku darežljivo izmiče humus i prekriva ptice.

Ovim preludijem je istorija tragične sudbine božanske Agave mogla biti zapečačena scenskom metaforom iz pozorišta sa dobrom tradicijom, ali Bach iščezava i uz silovit ritam probijaju se drevni grčki instrumenti, gurajući na scenu KASTORA, koji sa naporom nosi na leđima uniformu, svoj identitet. Kastor gamiže po podu, zaobilazi Agavu i kada se sakrije iza njene ravnodušnosti, podiže se i odlučno navlači svoju uniformu. I sada je on velik i neprikosnoven; nosato lice udara u nebo, tako rakursirana kaširana usta formiraju pohotni grč koji se širi na telo i razuzdane ekstreme. Onaj koji nosi uniformu je u povređenom zanosu, pa će da se sveti, da oplođava. Pritišće Agavu uz središnju crnu zavesu i ona ih netom proguta. Sa njima zajedno, sa scene na tren nestaje i muzika, a onda se iznova javlja predočavajući slast gozbe iza zavese i mameći na scenu DVE BABE, da svojim zloslutnitn pocupkivanjem o tome posvedoče.

Jedna je plava, a druga zelena; rogobatna čeljad strogog oca Hijeronimusa Boša. Kada odskakutaju svoju igru, kratku poput spota koji propagira iskonsko zlo, brzo se gube u nekom od crnih otvora, jer na scenu ponovo dolazi Agava. Vraća se teturajući i pada okrenuta publici svojim podnožjem – otvorenom provalijom na čijem dnu zjapi glava. Tišina je, jer je Agavin položaj izuzetno ekspresivan, ravan contrapostu.

Sada se drevnogrčka muzika rasplinjuje i kroz crnu zavesu proviruje na Agavu zelenokosa lepotica KALA. Porađa je i sa njenim nedonoščetom ERIFOM, bratom po erosu, upušta se u zanosan ljubavni ples. Pohranjuju majku Agavu prekrivajući je crnim pokrivalom i odlaze. Zvuci počinju da se kotrljaju, resko i odsečno i uz njih na scenu izlazi KARLO smetljar, beo kao sneg, da počisti svu prljavštinu i bolest koju su po sceni prosule njegove kolege-prethodnici.
Posao ga dovodi do Agave, čudnog otpatka koji ga zbunjuje i raznežuje, sve uz pratnju nostalgične muzike preludija (Bach). Ali pošto njegov posao ne predviđa takve izlive, Karlo se nakon prepuštanja nežnim gipsanim rukama udaljuje sa scene noseći Agavu sa sobom.

Dolaze opet babe da označe Karlovu nevidljivu rabotu, a iza njih, preobraženi Kastor, unapređen ukrasnim delom Agavine odeće, kao ordenom. Pronalazi ptice i stavlja ih na metlu-stablo, koju je Karlo ostavio igri u amanet, proigravajući na taj način ponuđenu mu simboliku. Takvog ga zatiče Agava, koja se vraća da bi prvi put insistirala na kontaktu: posrće ka prvom koji se drznuo da pomrači njezinu božansku lepotu. Kastor se brani ponudama, ali zalud – primoran je da joj odrubi glavu, dovršavajući tako započet čin unakažavanja.

I zajedno sa saučesnikom Karlom podiže joj spomenik kraj stabla. Ovu gozbu pokajanih zveri prekida nova ličnost, DVOJNA MASKA (Kala i Erif), predstavnik nove generacije, osvetničke i samosvesne: otima iznakaženu glavu svoje lepotice bake, ruši spomenik. Karlo i Kastor se zauvek povlače, nesposobni da učestvuju u činu koji je tuđ njihovoj scenskoj funkciji-karakteru.

I po treći put na scenu izlaze babe: da otklone mogućnost rasplinjavanja akcije moćnog, raskrinkavajućeg zla. Uklanjaju Dvojnu masku umotanu u crni veo i zaokružuju svoj posao gurmanskom scenom proždiranja Agavine odeće.
I time predočavaju povratak Agave, ogoljene do svog poslednjeg izdanka: astralnog pri svog svojoj prepoznatljivosti, svedenog do poražavajuće elementarnosti: želje da letom napusti okuženi prostor.

Bach još neko vreme kruži oko ušiju, a onda se bučno pali neon i zarurmenjeni obrazi i dlanovi se obraćaju nepokretnim crnim zavesama.

Kaća ČELAN *5)

1. / “VANINSTITUCIONALNO POZORIŠTE” /
U Skopju je tokom decembra meseca 1980. godine, a u okviru Festivala mladog i otvorenog teatra, održan žučan simpozijum na temu “Vaninstitucionalni teatri Jugoslavije”, koji nije uspeo da razjasni osnovne egzistencijalne i estetske probleme “pozorišta izvan kutije”. Kao što ga niti jedan simpozijum neće razjasniti, budući da na njima užestvuju i raspravljaju (što posebno vređa one koji su direktno uključeni u rad pozorišnih grupa), ljudi bez kojih ove grupe itekako postoje i deluju. Naime: grupe koje su formirale “vaninstitucionalno pozorište” nemaju nikakve veze sa institucionalnim pozorištem, one nisu van njega, jer nikada nisu htele da rade u njegovim okvirima; u okvirima u kojima je sve osim rada i istraživanja dozvoljeno i omogućeno.

2. / FORMIRANJE STAVA /
Pozorišna grupa “Maska i pokret” sjedinila je u svom nazivu oblasti svog istraživanja i teško da bi se njen rad mogao analizirati ograničen preciznim vremenskim jedinicama. Kao kod svih organski predodređenih pozorišnih poslanika, tako se i kod Ive Kostović-Mandić i Petra Mandića pozorišna delatnost začela još u vremenima detinjstva, koja su, kako piše Vesna Parun, kriva za sve. Ono što je u javnosti ostalo zabeleženo, jesu dva projekta: projekat baletske družine “Pokret i maska”, prvi put javno izveden u proleće 1979. godine na oronulom i krajnje opasnom za igru, tavanu u Dobrovoljačkoj ulici 12 u Sarajevu (tada slučajno prisutna delegacija kineskih pozorišnih radnika nije propustila priliku da predano pribeleži sve što im se čulima nametalo, od izgleda maski, do najbezazlenijeg scenografskog detalja) i obnovljen na Tjentištu, na manifestaciji Mladost Sutjeske, gde je svojom snagom i lepotom i preciznošću izvedbe zadivio sve prisutne mlade umetnike (osim onih kojima je sujeta virila iz džepova). Pa je beogradski list “Mladost” u članku posvećenom ovoj manifestaciji, napisao: “… ‘Pokret i maska’ – slobodna teatarska grupa iz Sarajeva, sastavljena od pozorišnih i nepozorišnih ljudi, grupa koja je upriličila uživanje u jednoj, kod nas verovatno neviđenoj projekciji teatra kao zbivanja simbola utisnutih u spoj muzike, pokreta i maske – (podvukla K.Č), uživanje što ne ostavlja ni trenutak luksuzu ravnodušnosti.” A ispod fotografije koja je prikazivala scenu iz predstave, potpisao: događaj smotre.
Nakon ovoga, grupa nastavlja rad oslobođena nepozorišnih (uhlebljenih) ljudi; priprema niz etida (“ETIDE”, juna meseca 198o. uznemirile smerne šetače zagrebačkog Maksimira) u kojima nastavlja da razvija tehniku izrađivanja maski, prilagođavajući ih koreografskim zakonima radnje. Takođe, Iva Kostović-Mandić i Petar Mandić u ovom periodu radikalizuju svoj odnos prema scensko-baletskom pokretu odbacujući naivnu funkcionalnost klasičnog baleta, naime njegovu pokazivačku svrhu i usmeravajući njegova dostignuća na specifičan odnos prema muzici: pokret razigrava simbole pozorišne priče-radnje, o čemu najbolje svedoči predstava “Neko je ubio pjesmu”.

3. / PROGRAM PREDSTAVE /
LICA: Agava, plemenita lutka;
Kastor, onaj koji nosi uniformu;
Kala, ona koja oplakuje;
Erif, prerano rođeni;
Kala i Erif kao Dvojna maska;
Karlo, smetljar;
Dvije babe i
Onaj koji leti.
“Sve stvari moćno, neizračunljivo vrijeme
Iznosi na svjetlost i opet pokriva tamom.”
(Sofokle: “Ajant”)

4. / OFF-GLEDAOCI /
Pošto se u ovoj predstavi živi izvodači skrivaju iza maski – lica umrtvljenih na veke vekova, jasno je da je feed-back, tj. uticaj gledalaca na pozorišnu igru, zanemarljiv. Imajući takođe u vidu objektivnu nemogućnost da ovakvi projekti dožive da se produkuju u onoj meri koja je uvrežena za predstave zvaničnih pozorišta, gledaoci kojima zapadne sreća da prisustvuju ovakvoj predstavi povinuju se zakonima specifične kolektivnosti. Nalikuju onim ljudima koji se pozdravljaju na ulici, jer se poznaju sa groblja gde posećuju najmilije, čiji su grobovi igrom slučaja u komšiluku. Zbog toga u ovom tekstu zauzimaju toliki prostor.

5. / OJ, BUDI SVOJ /
Autor ovog putopisa nije imao nakanu da njime gane čitaoca širinom i poetičnošću svog asocijativnog fonda, jer je smatrao da ovakvi projekti zaslužuju poseban književno-pozorišni tretman, radikalan u svakom slučaju u odnosu na tekuću pozorišnu kritiku.