REFLECTIONS BEFORE THE 8TH EDITION OF THE INTERFERENCES FESTIVAL
After two years of forced hiatus and digital quarantine, the Hungarian State Theatre in Cluj has again the opportunity to host the Interferences International Theatre Festival. This 8th edition is particularly important for us mainly because of the quite recent complicated and obscure epidemic phenomena, as well as the dramatic events of our everyday life, which duly intensify the extraordinary character of theatre in terms of its responsibility assumed in exploring and articulating the truth, and even swimming against the current as it is.
Among the “achievements” of the global pandemic which has hit on us in the past couple of years, there has been implemented a whole set of measures which have violated, in a moderate or even brutal manner, fundamental constitutional, as well as basic human rights in order to “protect our health”. Today, we are already certain that the formula is far more complex than we might have thought it was two years ago, and that the pandemic has generated a fairly significant profit for the superstate economic elite.
However, it is even more worrying to see it instill fear in people to such an extent that - even after the official 'end' of the epidemic – these are still lacking the courage to socialise free of cares, to meet and spend time together within their social circles, to see friends or to freely attend any cultural or sporting events.
The image of the driver alone in the car with the mask on his face is emblematic for me! The devastating war that broke out in our neighbouring country earlier this year, in February, along with the other more than two dozen wars which have been fought on other continents for some time now without being overly tackled by the mainstream media, has only multiplied our own version of instilled fear.
What can theatre do in such times? It has to passionately seek the truth and reveal the facts, causes and mysterious interests lying behind events, and to highlight on the rather entangled connections that have triggered all of the above tragic happenings. Moreover, theatre must inspire hope into the hearts of the audiences, it should be the beam of light at the end of the tunnel, reminding us of the encouraging words of Jesus Christ: “Do not fear!”. This is one of the main imperatives of contemporary European culture.
Doubled by the 230th anniversary of Hungarian theatre in Cluj, this year's edition of the Interferences Festival reiterates its aim to delight its audience with the diversity, as well as the high artistic quality and international feature of its productions, with its fraternity towards different cultures, turning togetherness into a joyful celebration.
general manager of the Hungarian State Theatre in Cluj and manager of the Interferences International Theatre Festival
president of the European Theatre Union