The magnetic universe of Nikola Tesla, the great Serbo-Croatian inventor and scientist, champion of alternating current on the underside of Thomas Alva Edison and his direct current, antagonistic vertices in the so-called «war of currents», is meta-theatrical in a new setting scene from Angle Productions directed by Luis O’Malley.
Tesla / Edison had its world premiere last night at the Arinaga Crossing of Cultures Theater, which hosted the first wings of this unpublished text written by the brothers Quique and Yeray Bazo, awarded the prestigious Jesús Domínguez Prize, and which reconstructs the trajectory of Tesla in the twilight of his life. “The play is a delusion that recreates the last days of a mad genius, in which he receives visits from his former friends or enemies, from Thomas Alva Edison to Mark Twain, passing through William Carrigan, the errand boy,” he explains. O’Malley. “In other words, the story is a compendium of Tesla’s life, told through his madness.”
Along these lines, the scenic space designed by José Luis Massó evokes that dreamlike atmosphere, between reverie and phantasmagoria that, in the words of its director, “moves the audience to the center of Tesla’s madness.” “For this reason, we have not made a naturalistic montage, but we have looked at references such as German expressionist cinema and films like The Cabinet of Doctor Caligari”, he points out.
The actors Toni Báez and Miguel Ángel Maciel lead the cast of this play directed by Luis O’Malley
The actor Toni Báez dresses in the skin of Tesla and his rival is run by Miguel Ángel Maciel, since María Filomena Martignetti and Abraham Santacruz complete the cast and are divided into different characters that marked the existence of the protagonist. «One of the plot lines is the antagonism between Tesla and Edison, but Martignetti and Santacruz embody many other characters because it is the review of a lifetime, from Tesla’s childhood until the episode in which the alternating current began to execute people because of the electric chair, so we could refer to the play as a theatrical biopic, ”reveals O’Malley.
With regard to dramaturgy, the Bazo brothers undertook a titanic task of rigorous research around the life and work of Tesla, but which in its embodiment is tinged with some brushstrokes of imagination and fantasy. In this sense, the montage intersects its scientific approach with an artistic treatment that contains, at the same time, a desire to disseminate a historical legacy through the same theatricality that this duo of inventors displayed throughout their lives. “If you want to know details about the life of Tesla, this is the ideal montage because it is really well documented,” warns O’Malley, “but, at the same time, the Spleens have allowed themselves poetic licenses with appearances of dead characters or blurred scenes , but the result is a very well done biography from the point of view of his imagination which, in his case, is risky and infinite ».
The unpublished text by the Bazo brothers was awarded the prestigious Jesús Domínguez Prize
All in all, Tesla / Edison is the fifth production of Angle, a Canarian production company founded in 2017 by Raúl Morán and responsible for The Return of Demofonte, The Lost Caress, Michelle and Lo que cantan los crillos. O’Malley, linked to Ángulo since its inception, celebrates this theatrical adventure that involves a new twist of experimentation in his career. “As a director, this challenge has been very uncomfortable in the best of ways, because I have totally stepped out of my comfort zone. Tesla / Edison has put us all to the test, with very different codes within the Canarian theater, but it has been a wonderful job “, he concludes, adding that” it is a luxury to be part of Angle, because Raúl is a producer who It offers a lot of creative freedom, that takes risks, that bets and that has all the strength to lay the foundations of another Canarian theater ».