Vítek Peřina: HANSEL AND GRETEL
During the 45 years of its existence, Alfa Theatre has produced a number of classic fairy tales along the lines of “Cinderella,” “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs,” “Little Red Riding Hood” and so on, but this is the first time that “Hansel and Gretel” has appeared on its stage. The story is known the world over, and has long had right of abode among Czech fairy tales where it has been retold by many collectors and narrators, the most well-known version being Božena Němcová's. It is also one of the most frequently-dramatised of fairy tales – there have been dozens of Czech adaptations alone for puppet theatre. Nevertheless, Alfa Theatre has here attempted to create a new version that allows the production team to realise its own ideas concerning the way in which the story might be rendered. It might be described thus: the classic version, but without unnecessary archaisms, anachronisms and elements of parody, with the creators being aware that the audience consists of children born in the 21st century. One of the important questions that must be asked by every adaptor of this story is whether to use the motif of the oven in which the witch and old man meet their inglorious ends. We decided to keep this episode, since it is part of people's general awareness of this story. It also gave us a reflective framework for the actual fairy tale, which is played out illusively by marionettes as remembered by the old stovemaker who tells it to the young stovemaker. These two stovemakers – who figure in a Czech nursery rhyme – are also enthusiastic country musicians, and so during the production they play the children a few of the best-known folk songs which their mother taught them...
Directed by: T.Dvořák, set: I.Nesveda, music: M.Vaniš, dramaturgy: P.Vašíček
Cast: Blanka JOSEPHOVÁ-LUŃÁKOVÁ, Marie MRÁZKOVÁ, Martina J. HARTMANNOVÁ, Bob HOLÝ, Petr BOROVSKÝ, Milan HAJN, Filip BOSÁK
Czech premiere: 12 December 2011
The production is aimed at children aged 4+