19:00, Tue 29th November – Sat 3rd December 2005 at Corpus Playroom
Michaelmas Week 8
'PAPER FLOWERS' is a tight two-hander, written in 1969 (the year the Communist leader Allende, came to power) by one of Chile’s greatest living playwrights explores the gulf between ‘Los Rotos’ (the broken ones) and the repetitive life of the affluent middle classes. The play is constructed with exceptional skill and is a sophisticated fusion of magical realism, absurdism and black comedy. I’m looking for two committed and open minded actors who wish to challenge themselves and enjoy exploring these two complicated and intriguing characters. Together we will make creative use the rehearsal process to produce a piece of theatre which does justice to the play’s unique and exciting explosion of longing, power games, silence, humour and desperation.
EVA: A lonely middle class widow who paints flowers alone in the botanical gardens. She tries with all her might to reach out and offer her love to Beto, a man whom she finds both socially and sexually threatening and compelling. When we first meet her, her life is ordered, repetitive and empty:
“That’s what my life is, eating and more eating, morning noon and night. I sometimes think that life is nothing more than a permanent meal, with pauses in between to get bored again”
BETO: An enigmatic figure from the slums by the river; dressed in rags, prone to severe fits of shaking and a disarming ability to evade questions about his past. He is a forceful presence, often fluctuating between monotonous utterances, brutality, childlike pathos and intensely poetic speeches:
“Love is broken bridge, with a broken tooth, with a broken crank. It flies within the world’s four walls, cracking skulls. Love is a three legged dog! A tramp with one hand and two bananas!”
The action is set in Eva’s ordered and neat living room, beginning as she enters with Beto carrying her shopping. What unfolds spans a tense few days in the house where we see Beto gradually colonise Eva’s world and impose disorder and havoc: rearranging, reconstructing and destroying the furniture and gradually filling the room with his dark, enormous, ragged paper flowers.