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Archive: Little Otík

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Alfa Theatre, Rokycanská 7, Plzeň
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Young Liberec playwright and dramaturg Vít Peřina, with whom our theatre has worked regularly for several years, has shown several times that he is capable of looking at classical fairy tales through a personal lense, thinking up original (and extremely witty) motivations while retaining the main plot lines and everything that makes a particular fairy tale part of the “golden treasury.” The proof can be seen in his versions of the well-known fairy tales :”The Magic Porridge Pot” and “Hansel and Gretel,” and above all his excellent “Budulínek“, which in the wonderful production by the Naive Theatre in Liberec has already won a number of prizes and festival awards. All the above-mentioned virtues can be seen in his brand-new dramatisation of another Czech fairy tale, best known in K.J. Erben’s version: “I’ve swallowed and eaten: the porridge from the pot, a pitcher of milk, a loaf of bread, Mother, Father, a little girl with some clover, a farmer with some hay, a swineherd and his pigs, a shepherd and his lambs, and now I’m going to eat you too!” says Erben’s “hero.” And Little Otík in Peřina’s play does likewise. But because the author has set the play in the present day – and, as a bonus for Pilsen patriots, in the region of and city of Pilsen – after the pot and the pitcher, Mum and Dad (from Ejpovice), Otík then decides to go for a publican from Kyšice, and then the whole of the ALFA theatre, including its actors and audience (in other words, you the audience, will in your way become part of the story, albeit passively). He even takes a fancy to the footballers from Pilsen’s Viktoria club. Luckily, Peřina’s version also features a granny with a hoe. The play, with motifs cleverly built on in both the script and set, is staged as “theatre within theatre.” As well as with actors, the director also works with puppets and marionettes.

We believe that this story, brought to life by internationally-famous Czech director Jan Švankmajer in his idiosyncratic 2000 film version, will also attract audiences on the stage of the ALFA theatre, even if Otík does swallow it.

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Alfa Theatre, Rokycanská 7, Plzeň

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