Édouard Louis. WHO KILLED MY FATHER Premiere

  • Director

    Antanas OBCARSKAS

  • Duration

    1 h 20 min (1 act)

  • Stage

    New Stage

  • Premiere date

    14th July, 2021

  • N-16. Entrance from Žemaitė square (Gedimino av.)

About

Translator from French Vincentas Klipčius

Antanas Obcarskas (b.1990), a director of the younger generation, is extremely open about his third production at the Lithuanian National Drama Theatre: ‘The images that Édouard creates in the text are the images of my life. The emotions he experienced are my emotions. Even though we are far apart, it makes me wonder: isn’t the life and mentality of a European province somewhat identical, regardless of geographical latitude or nationality?

We naturally see our parents as mature people, but the present shows that adolescence may not be over even at the age of fifty or sixty. I am observing a change in attitudes towards authorities and the father figure. Most of all, I want to know how unhappy my parents are, how many of their dreams have been shattered, and how many of their ambitions have gone unfulfilled. They will never admit it, but it’s important to me, and I think it’s on the minds of the people of my generation all over Europe. It will be a very intimate production with a simple and straightforward story. I am delighted that Gediminas Rimeika will be in it. We are the same age, and he has a good sense of the pulse of the present.’

The author of the text, Édouard Louis (b. 1992), a French writer of the same generation, is equally open. He writes autobiographical novels, while in Who Killed My Father (original title Qui a tué mon père) he shows the relationship between himself and his father, a man of difficult character.

This is his third work: in 2014, at the age of 22, he wrote his first novel, En finir avec Eddy Bellegueule (The End of Eddy). Incidentally, Eddy Bellegueule is the author’s real name, which he changed in 2013 before the publication of his debut work. The End of Eddy was widely acclaimed, became a bestseller in France, and was translated into 20 languages. The novel Histoire de la violence (History of Violence) was published two years later, and in 2018, the acclaimed director Thomas Ostermeier directed it at Berlin’s Schaubühne Theatre.

Édouard Louis grew up in a small French village. His father was a factory worker; an accident at work left him bedridden, angry and unhappy. Poverty, racism, and alcoholism, which Édouard encountered as a child, became the themes of his literary work. Édouard considers his family’s problems (internal discord, miscommunication, low emotional intelligence, addictions, and the collapse of dreams) a consequence of the country's political decisions.

‘In the conformist manner, Édouard’s father assumed all the norms of masculinity (strong, cold, uncompromising, contemptuous) and used them to torture himself and traumatise his family and his son. My father belonged to the generation of people whose childhood was abruptly replaced by adulthood. Like our parents, who had to change very quickly when the system changed. Growing up overnight, they rushed to learn how to survive, and we grew up in the atmosphere of their unlearned lessons, alone in the yards of blocks of flats. That was how the majority of European children grew up in the suburbs of large cities, in the quarters of factory workers, and on the fringes of housing estates. We experienced the world on our own and yearned for parental love.  

When I see Édouard’s uneducated, provincial, culturally-backward, poverty-stricken, and unsociable family, I see my own family. I have no doubt that many Lithuanian families are still living in such psychological harshness, and therefore I am convinced that this text will go straight to the hearts of many of them’, says Antanas Obcarskas.

With his creative team, the director seeks the answer to why parents hurt their children and don’t accept their choices, lifestyles, and attitudes. What hurt the parents themselves? Is the father figure still extolled in our society, or, rather, is it frightened?

‘We are discussing the starting point in the evolution of the husband and father figure in Western civilisation, the mythological image, the political decisions and changes in systems that have led us to have such fathers and such families. Our history is cruel, and it leaves deep marks on the simplest and most natural relationship, that of father and son. What kind of parents will we be? Are we ready for it?’ This is the question posed by the creative team.

 

Dates

  • December 09 (Thu), 19:00 New Stage

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Creators

  • Director — Antanas OBCARSKAS
  • Set designer — Lauryna LIEPAITĖ
  • Costume Designer — Flore VAUVILLÉ
  • Sound Designer — Adomas KORENIUKAS
  • Video Designer — Adomas GUSTAINIS
  • Light Designer — Dainius URBONIS
  • Director assistant — Titas VARNAS
  • Playwright‘s Assistant — Simona JURKUVĖNAITĖ

Cast

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