20 Jun 2014 19:00
An English rehearsed-reading of The Stand-in (Záskok) by legendary Jara Cimrman Theatre
For decades it was thought that this popular, intelligent, and witty play was beyond the comprehension of anyone other than Czechs. But now thanks to this considerate and sensitive English translation, brought to you by Prague-based, English actors and with the full encouragement and support of that most esteemed of Czech authors, Mr. Zdeněk Svěrák, the authors believe you will be convinced otherwise. This is the first time that the play has ever been performed in English in the Czech Republic and the historical significance of this unique cultural event cannot be over emphasised.
The impact of the fictional Jára Cimrman, poet, philosopher, inventor,
musician, mathematician, intellect, all round sportsman and prolific
playwright, on the Czech language and on the advancement of mankind was
recognised fully in 2005 when the Czech nation voted him to have been the most
important Czech in the history of the Czech Republic and, more importantly the
Cimrman’s literacy legacy remains influential today since many of his sayings, thoughts and philosophies have passed into everyday use in the Czech language. Set in 1910, when the Czechs were still under the yolk of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, The Stand-In tells the story of a not very talented theatre group who travel from town to town performing Cimrman’s plays, many of which were adaptations of existing works and were devised according to the number and talent of the company actors. For example Cimrman’s – Hamlet Without Hamlet has become legendary.
In the play, The Stand-In, the company find that their leading actor has suddenly departed at short notice, so they must find an expensive stand-in– who happens to be the forgetful actor Karel Infeld Prácheňský. Although an esteemed actor, Prácheňský can’t remember his words, which character he is playing, the name of the other actors or indeed which play he is in.
The Stand-In is a funny, insightful comedy into the antics of
acting and itinerant theatre at the beginning of the 19 th century.
This performance is supported by the Jara Cimrman Theatre and the British Council.
June 20th, 2014 19:00
The Žižkov Theatre of Jára Cimrman, Prague, The Czech Republic
By Ladislav Smoljak and Zdeněk Svěrák
translated by Brian Stewart and Emílie Machalová
Tickets (120Kc) available from the Jara Cimrman theatre website http://www.zdjc.cz from 19. 5. 2014.
Venue:Žižkovské divadlo Járy Cimrmana, Praha
20 Jun 2014 19:00