So in war as in heaven | Babelia

World War II, counted again from the western front. Mud, By the way, written by Guillem Clua and Nando López for The Young Company, it has a formidable start in the plastic and promising in the dramatic. Its authors put us in flour without preamble: the propellers aligned from box to box by the scenographer Silvia de Marta evoke those of the biplanes of El Circo Volador of the Deutsche Luftstreitkräfte; the platforms in which they are framed (which prefigure future tombstones) suggest distant univocal spaces and the light of Paloma Parra gives all this allegorical quality.

Clua and Lopez transfer the action from Cologne to Paris: roundtrip, they provide us with a credible immersion in the small world of two groups of very young friends, whom the contest will uproot to bury them in the trench war. When, once there, through the mouths of the characters begin to speak the history manuals, we begin to miss what they really say Helmut, Klaus, Marcel, Pierre, Erika and other creatures in outline. At this point, the scenery is so beautiful and limpid: it does not carry any scent of blood, sweat or mud. Would not it have been better to force the interpreters to tread a bed of humus or topsoil, such as that arranged by the master Paolo Magelli and the set designer Miljenko Sekulic in his unforgettable staging of A month in the field?


Authors: Guillem Clua and Nando López. Interpreters: José Cobertera, Sami Khalil, Alejandro Chaparro, María Romero, Víctor de la Fuente, Álvaro Quintana, Mateo Rubistein, Jota Haya, María Valero, Cristina Varona. Characterization: Sara Álvarez. VideoScene: Elvira Ruiz Zurita. Movement: Andoni Larrabeiti. Light: Paloma Parra. Set design and costumes: Silvia de Marta. Direction: José Luis Arellano. Madrid. Teatros del Canal, until December 23.

Supported only by a dramaturgy that threads common places without granting any of them enough development (the moving Christmas Truce happens without pain or glory), left a little to their fate, the actors do what they can. By the time the revolutionary Masha intones Kalinka where should the Warszawianka or better yet the Goodbye to Slavianka, the luck of so stereotyped creatures begins to be alien to us, although there is carnality in María Romero's Ingrid and verisimilitude in André de Víctor de la Fuente.

Projected, certain data and dates redound to those already on the scene. Instead of trying to account for four years of a war whose end recent historiography delays until 1923 on the Eastern Front and the Near East, Mud should have focused on some episode, following the example of the monumental War and peace by Piotr Fomenko, subtitled The beginning of the novel because its four hours were devoted entirely to the first chapter.


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