World Theatre Day – 27th March 2012
I’m honored to have been asked by the International Theatre Institute ITI at UNESCO to give this greeting commemorating the 50th anniversary of World Theatre Day. I will address my brief remarks to my fellow theatre workers, peers and comrades.
May your work be compelling and original. May it be profound, touching, contemplative, and unique. May it help us to reflect on the question of what it means to be human, and may that reflection be blessed with heart, sincerity, candor, and grace. May you overcome adversity, censorship, poverty and nihilism, as many of you will most certainly be obliged to do. May you be blessed with the talent and rigor to teach us about the beating of the human heart in all its complexity, and the humility and curiosity to make it your life’s work. And may the best of you – for it will only be the best of you, and even then only in the rarest and briefest moments – succeed in framing that most basic of questions, “how do we live?” Godspeed.
Biography : US actor, producer, screenwriter and director, John Malkovich is first of all a theatre artist.
After discovering theatre at the beginning of the 70s (Illinois State University), he founded in 1976 the famous Steppenwolf Theater Company with Terry Kinney, Jeff Perry and Gary Sinise.
He rose to fame in cinema with his interpretation of Valmont in Dangerous Liaisons by Stephen Frears, alongside Michelle Pfeiffer and Glenn Close. After this role which marks a significant step in his career, he will act in more than 70 movies in the United States and abroad.
Interpretating a wide range of roles, he has been nominated twice for the Oscar for best actor in a supporting role for Places in the Heart (1984) and In the line of fire(1993), and he has been awarded for his interpretations in movies such as the Killing Fields, the Dangerous liaisons, Being John Malkovich or Changeling.
In 2011, he directs his third theatre production in Paris, Les Liaisons Dangeureuses at the Théâtre de l’Atelier after the success of Hysteria (Marigny, 2002) and the Good Canary (Comedia, 2007) for which he was awarded the Molière for best staging.
I believe theatre provides us with the most authentic experience of Romanian reality. We are, after all, celebrating Caragiale in 2012, and his characters continue to haunt us. In full development and downfall, Romanian society depicts itself accordingly on the stage. It is less than we had expected and more than we had imagined. If you go to the theatre nowadays, you get your dose of happy endand catharsis, and return home relatively at ease with the daily tragedy of going through a transition period.
While looking for salvation in dealing with his existential dilemma, Hamlet proclaimed that “Theatre holds a mirror up to nature, showing virtue her feature, scorn her own image, and the very age and body of the time his form and pressure”.
What more could you ask for?
Come join us, enjoy life, take whatever you like from our yard and head towards the library – an island of safety where vanity is forbidden.
Theatre has become a cradle of history where even the tipsy citizen finds his place, in a world full of „heroes” of our time.
À bon entendeur, salut !
UNITER/ ITI Romanian Centre President