I got to “Belgrade Trilogy” by mistake. It was the diploma project of young graduating actors/directors and one of them happened to be a friend of Cris. Therefore I found out about it. No tickets, no invitation, just people wanting to see their work and what they’ve learned.
Connected only be a feeble line, the three stories present lifelines of people leaving Belgrade to look for a better life someplace else. The ever tempting “grass is greener on the other side”. Two brothers making a living in Prague so that one of them is not forced to perform military service, two married couples living a dream of fortune in Sidney, Australia and a young actor and a pianist meeting all the way in America.
Explicit language, genuine emotions, real life and its drama, all made fun of on New Year’s Eve. The first part presents the two brothers who were earning money from dancing in night clubs. One of them had a relationship with a girl still living in Belgrade. Ana apparently couldn’t face the distance and has since married and is also pregnant, as the young man will find out in the end. The expected drama is missing, as his answer to the betrayal is to start acting friendly to the girl his brother invited to party with them.
The second story introduces us to the complicated relationship of two couples living in Sidney. They pretend to be friends, although both women state they would never be friends back in Belgrade. One of them is also having an affair with the other one’s husband. As the night between the years is the best time for bad news, she also finds out that her neighbor, the same Ana, is now working for a TV channel. As she had graduated from Journalism, she takes it quite personal.
The third part characters are now living in America. They’re at an LA beach party and after finding out they are both from Belgrade, they share a marijuana cigarette. The girl got to the US after winning a visa lottery. She did not want it to happen to her, as Ana had submitted the papers for her. Because of the marijuana effect, they make fun of the wrong guy, who points a gun at them, beats and humiliates them.
The ironical part of the play is that all the character blame Ana for something, while considering she has an accomplished life. The ending introduces Ana to us, who, at her New Year’s party is sadder than the whole rest, running away from everyone.
Although the frequent swearing might offend some, this comedy with a tragic ending seemed quite genuine in what disappointment caused by chasing fake dreams looks like. People expect too much, but only in one direction. They fear their choices and end up disappointed, although their life is altogether improved from an economical point of view. Those who take things as they are, like to boy from the first part, adapt faster and make the best out of the pieces of dreams they’re left with. Those who have not learned not to hold grudges and always something more than what they have end up ruining their lives and those of the people around them. And they eventually turn to alcohol or drugs if they are weak enough.The version on Cristina's blog here.
Tags: Theatre, Romanian Theatre, Romanian Culture, Belgrade, Actors, Acting