A Little Disaster in the Station Buffet

The Theatre On the Balustrade, Prague, Czech Republic, 1992
Author: Oleg Jurijev
Directed by Arnošt Goldflam

about the production

Empires, as we know, survive with the ideas they rose with. The theatre on the railing also survives with the ideas that stood at its origin more than thirty years ago. We can briefly enumerate them: an appellative theatre that means a theatre of subjects, not of titles, a theatre, that experiments, but is not experimental. A theatre disrupting established norms. “Theatre,” Jan Grossman once said, “is not to be done seriously, but is to be done properly.” Time changes us all: ensembles change, our view of the theatre changes, as do also our efforts and our reflexions. The place of the theatre in society changes, the needs to which the theatre responds change. To remain what we were and to absorb the good impulses of new times: to be able to recognize them and to react to them.

The Theatre on the Railing looks far new plays by new authors, Czech and foreign, returns to classical texts to find the present in them. The Theatre on the railing looks far new directors, actors, looks far topics involving present-day problems. All that is nothing unusual: there are more worries which every theatre certainly has in every tome and place.

So we can say that the Theatre on the Railing consciously makes no account of any prognoses or concepts, any plans or projects.

It makes no account of them, yet intends to realize them properly. Correctness without respect, tension from uncertainties and questions, that is in fact the idea the theatre rose and lives with.

Disaster – one of the first titles in modem times, that is how we understand it. A play against racism and simultaneously a play within a play and a play about a play. A memory of the time when Jews were still living, a dim, vague memory, one which we shall likewise soon forget.

Karel Steigerwald


directed by Arnošt Goldflam
set designer and costumes: Miroslav Melena
music: Jiří Bulis
cast: Jan Novotný, Zuzana Geislerová, Jiří Ornest, Jan Hrušínský, Petr Pospíchal, Vlastimil Bedrna, Leoš Suchařípa