by Simon Stone based on motifs by Henrik Ibsen
Direction: Simon Stone (Amsterdam)
Guest performance during FIND 2018
1964: the successful architect Cees Kerkman designs a glass holiday home for his family. This house, which over 60 years later will go up in flames, is a place where three generations of the upper-class Kerkmans meet each other, argue, talk, love and celebrate; a place in which the decisive moments and crises of the family take place. In scenes which jump back and forth in time and assemble in a mosaic-like way, we observe the conversations and interactions of the family members and follow the effects that the crimes and abuses of the grandparents and parents – as well as their suppression and cover-up – have on their children and grandchildren. Although the total transparency of the walls seems to leave no dark places to hide unpleasant truths, a dark family secret is carried on from generation to generation, in plain sight. The desire to look away, the silent group dynamic of forgetting and obliterating is more powerful than that which is apparent.
»Ibsen Huis« is a family epic, a portrait of an era and a rewriting of Ibsen’s family dramas. Simon Stone’s production makes use of Ibsen-like family constellations and characters – the young, idealistic dreamer; the bankrupt industrialist fighting for his legacy; the wife who is stronger than her husband and searches for the meaning of life; the couple whose relationship dissolves in a chaos of sex, death and mutual recrimination – and from them creates a new, distinct drama about the impossibility of repression and the struggle with one’s own memory.
Simon Stone (*1984, Basel) founded the theater group »The Hayloft Project« in Sydney in 2007. From 2015–16 he was the director in residence at the Theater Basel. Stone‹s production of »John Gabriel Borkman« was voted production of the year 2016 by the journal Theater heute.
Set Design: Lizzie Clachan
Costume Design: An D’Huys
Music: Stefan Gregory
Dramaturgy and Translation: Peter van Kraaij
Lighting Design: James Farncombe
Private Producers: Gert Jan, Corinne van den Berg
With: Celia Nufaar, Hans Kesting, Fred Goessens, Maria Kraakman, Janni Goslinga, Hélène Devos, Maarten Heijmans, Aus Greidanus jr, Eva Heijnen, Bart Slegers, David Roos
Duration: ca. 210 minutes
A production by Toneelgroep Amsterdam.