Alberto Conejero has embraced the shadow of Lorca sleepwalker and cursed, that of the hallucinated imprecations of Poet in New York and the theater trilogy under the sand; the man who knew that life was often "neither fair, nor good, nor sacred." Conejero has had the courage to approach the unfinished Comedy without title, the most political of the three, which, he says, "will always be concluded: that is its power". And he has not had to impose his voice because all his writing is "magnetized by Lorca." In Spanish, the voice of the young poet speaks with that of the eternal poet, listened to, attended and rhythmed by the master Lluís Pasqual. The three have summoned the tremor of fear as the closeness of a bombing, the pre-war chaos growing like a cancer, the stench of unleashed death: that's The dream of life. The action, on the eve of 1936. Lorenzo, the leading voice, is an enraged author against the conventional scene, fed up with who goes to the theater "to see what happens and not what happens to us". Nacho Sánchez, who already dazzled as the young soldier who guarded Rapún in The dark stone, of Conejero, is once again an extraordinary choice: unveiled and burning eyes, clear and powerful voice. It would also have been, by the way, an electric Roberto Zucco.
Pasqual seems to have fixed the precise music: here it is recited, but without imposed lorquisms, without rhetoric, with naturalness, whispered or howled. Emma Vilarasau (Elena, the first actress) is big, devastating in the first act. In the second recital "by Espert" (great model, live the sky) and it is still capitalized, but I like it more when you find your own bulerías, so to speak, as it happens in your farewell, and then I'll get to that. Daniel Jumillas, dressed in white, is Lorenzo's lover, and seems to come from The public: the third act, practically an epilogue, is a vibrant hand in hand between the two.
From the extensive cast I was also seduced by the couple formed by María Isasi (Guillermina) and Sergio Otegui (Enrique). She plays a woman mistreated by a criminal husband: perhaps she is the most innocent and moving victim of the Lorca theater. And her husband, the most sinister. Incarnates the reaction, the most feared crusader ("My God does not forgive"), a fascist that does not cost to recognize today. Raúl Jiménez is the waiter, another smiling scoundrel. The perfect helper of the executioner. Few lines are enough to draw a monster: it would have been a Falangist or Faist killer. I had not seen Antonio Medina for a long time, who plays the owner of the theater, great voice and presence, with an air to Arturo Lopez, and has a delicious moment when his character is asked, in the essay, by the meaning of the term " poison quinces ".
Pasqual performs a seemingly simple, almost naked sunset. The first act seemed to me of impeccable rhythm and incessant vigor. The "new" second act springs up here as if Conejero were a son of Lorca in another dimension. The important thing is, I believe, that it gives us back the brilliance and the mystery of the lost function and, now, "magnetized". I was a little puzzled by the idea of putting the second: Pasqual alternates formats of essay and fiction, with Lorenzo as director and dying, between pain and sleepwalking. There are flashes of humor, like the passage in which Elena shows the mother of the stagehand (stupendous Ester Bellver) the "most appropriate way to move". Something does not quite come together in that act. Dafnis Balduz is a formidable actor, but, pity, I found it somewhat wasted in the role played here by Nick Bottom. And I think that Jaume Madaula, who plays the stagehand Bakunin, lacks some intensity. Luis Perezagua (Woodcutter) seemed to me doubly possessed by the spirits of Carles Canut and Joaquín Roa, and Juan Matute (Fairy) and Koldo Olabarri (Silfo), by those of Ocaña and Camilo (or two creatures drawn by Nazario). Very good the pointer (Chema de Miguel) and the student (Juan Paños). I also applauded the dusty, basement or anti-aircraft shelter, by Pascal Mérat, and the works of Dani Espasa (musical direction), set design and costumes (Alejandro Andújar), with Miguel Huertas and Iván Mellén on piano and percussion. As the second act progresses, increasingly strengthened by Pasqual, it has, in my eyes, the disquieting tonality of David Lynch. And Emma Vilarasau flies and makes us fly with the mixture between Ode to Walt Whitman Y Scream to Rome (and other verses that escape me): she is reborn and she is naked, furious, moving, plethoric. And the third closes with a brutal row, which I will not disclose, and the return of a voice that either. The fierce beauty of The dream of life It is a gift for all lovers of Lorca.
The dream of life. Text: Federico García Lorca and Alberto Conejero Director: Lluís Pasqual. Spanish Theater Madrid Until February 24.