Naive Theatre Liberec, Czech Republic, 2018
Directed by Michaela Homolová
about the production
Close your eyes.
Can you hear it murmur? Breathe in its smell.
Bohemia lies by the sea.
This poem became the basis for a theatre piece ‘filled with seawater’. It is the poetry of Radek Malý, one of the most renowned Czech children’s poets. The play was produced by director Michaela Homolová, who stands behind a number of successful children’s titles at the Naïve Theatre in Liberec. She brought one of them, About the Lamb that Fell from the Sky, to Divadelná Nitra in 2015.
Bohemia Lies by the Sea earned the creative team several awards: Radek Malý, Vít Peřina and Michaela Homolová as the authors of the play received the Theatre News Award for the season 2015/2016 in the category Puppet and Visual Theatre, several awards from the jury at the 2017 MATEŘINKA festival (for direction, dramaturgy, writing collaboration, set design, collective actors’ performance, and music and sound design), and the play received the ERIK Award for the most inspiring Czech puppet production in the season 2015/2016.
“The submarine images find their strongest expression in the dimmed lighting and a deliberate emphasis of the unearthly (or rather unwaterly) beauty of the objects by illumination: jellyfishes, corals, a boy in a seashell or a giant whale. The employed principles – shadow play, variations of perspective, traditional puppet theatre or simple paper fish cut-outs – together make for a unique and original theatrical world under the sea.” Plzeň Theatre 2016 – Bohemia Lies by the Sea, Kritické theatrum,
krith.phil.muni.cz, Kateřina Málková, 28 September 2016
“The authors (...) lead their audiences of all shapes and sizes – the play is intended for children from the age of 6, but it exerts a spontaneous charm on both parents and grandparents, theatre-makers and mere theatre-goers – into the fantastical and magical world under the sea. Jellyfishes float, tiny fish swim, sharks dash and whales fly by in the dimmed theatrical hall. Audiences are surrounded by the sound of the sea, and the actors gently whisper the sea-myth-inspired verses of Radek Mladý. (...) The audience can feel around and comment on everything, as the youngest ones in Plzeň did.”
(Bohemia Lies by the Sea, Theatre News, 6 October 2016)
“We put a drop of blue colour in a glass bowl, add a pinch of salt and – lo and behold – a piece of the sea that can rock a paper boat. Barbora Kubátová, Tomáš Bělohlávek, Filip Homola and Adam Kubišta engage in a spell of focused play in front of the audience – with objects made of paper, wood and cloth. And also with light and shadow: corals are lit yellow, and a stunning blue-green octopus swims among them. A school of curious fish chase about, a shark bares his teeth far away and a whale glides above the spectators’ heads, while one of the puppets momentarily settles in its mouth. These are no technical wonders, you only need two hands times four to breathe life into the creations of Barbora Jakůbková and fashion a magical underwater world reverberating with fragments of stories: About a girl born in a seashell. About a meeting on an island. About a voyage together. About waiting, solitude, seeking. About the beauty of seemingly ordinary things.
A poetic collage could seem indigestible for such young audiences, but that may as well just be the view of an adult, who unduly uses reason instead of intuition. Simply put: it’s enough to have your eyes, ears and heart wide open – just like those children.”
(Lenka Šaldová, Theatre News, 29 March 2016)
directed by Michaela Homolová
seting: Barbora Jakůbková
music: Filip Homola
cast: Michaela Homolová, Dan Kranich, Filip Homola, Adam Kubišta
Michaela Homolová (1972) graduated in directing a dramaturgy at the Department of Alternative and Puppet Theatre of DAMU in Prague. Since 1995, she contributes as an author, actor and mainly as director to a successful era of the Naïve Theatre in Liberec. She has directed about 20 productions, such as About the Lamb that Fell from the Sky (at Divadelná Nitra 2015) or Bohemia Lies by the Sea. She has made use of her experience with children’s theatre since 2009 as a teacher of the Literature-Drama class at the Elementary Art School in Liberec and guides children’s and youth ensembles, whose productions belong to the most interesting performances at national exhibits of young theatre. Her piece Once Upon a Time in Chelm… was presented at the World Festival of Children’s Theatre in Stratford, Canada, to excellent acclaim. In 2012, she received the Theatre News Award for her production Budulínek. In 2017, she earned the ASSITEJ National Centre Award for systematically developing children’s theatre.
Video of the production: yes
Script of the production: CZ, EN
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