(*) Ewa Procter
This year my summary of the plays I saw during the past months is earlier than usual!
In the past, I have always waited for the year to finish, before doing this summary. However, even if I had been going to the theatre as usual, I had no way of writing about a play that would be on for just a few more days.
You may remember my mentioning in the past that, contrary to what happens in England and in the United States, the Christmas Season is generally very poor in Brazil, as far as theatre is concerned. Many plays finish their runs around the 20th of December, and some of them – not all! -start again after the New Year.
However, during the year I managed to see some interesting plays, both comedies and musicals; and I reviewed some for “BCS”. Not all of them obviously, because I only have a limited space, and thus it would be an impossibility for a start.
February started with the very successful British play called “As Crianças” in Portuguese (or, “The Children” in its original title), written by Lucy Kirkwood. It started at the Teatro Poeira, but since finishing its run there, it moved theatres, and also had successful presentations in São Paulo.
March brought a very different kind of play. This time it was a musical, called “Cole Porter – Ele Nunca Disse Que Me Amava”, based on the controversial personality of Cole Porter, and presenting a selection of his songs. It was a very enjoyable show, performed by an excellent female cast, at the Theatro Net Rio, in Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro.
April was a month when I reviewed another kind of musical. This time it was “Merlin e Arthur – Um Sonho de Liberdade”, based on the famous legend of the Round Table. However, author Marcia Zanelatto and director Guilherme Leme Garcia, using the basic theme, told the audience a lot about the social and political moment Brazil is going through. It played at the Teatro Riachuelo, downtown Rio de Janeiro.
“Angela Maria – Lady Crooner” was an interesting pocket musical that played at the Centro Cultural dos Correios during the month of May. Unfortunately, due to some unexpected circumstances, the run of this musical was cut short. A pity, as it was a very enjoyable show!
However, Maurício Baduh,the actor who was in the “Angela Maria – Lady Crooner” musical started doing presentations (Thursdays only) of his one-man show, “Formidable”, with a repertoire of French songs at the Teatro Maison de France, also during the months of May and June.
in July, there was an opportunity to go and see the interesting mixture of works by Bertolt Brecht with songs by Edith Piaf. The show was presented at the Teatro Prudential, which was the former Teatro Manchete, located in Flamengo, Rio de Janeiro.
August was comedy month. João Bethencourt’s “Tem um Psicanalista na Nossa Cama”, although written in the 1970s, fits the bill as a good comedy – it brought variety to my reviews as well! It played at the Centro Cultural da Light, a small and comfortable theatre downtown Rio de Janeiro.
I will now jump into October, also talking about a comedy. “Um Casamento Feliz” had another run (would it be its last one?), after many other presentations in different theatres. This time the company went for a month to the Teatro Maison de France – but the success they achieved plus the possibilities of going on with their presentations, brought them another continuation. At the same time, “Emilinha”, a pocket musical that I have reviewed back in 2018, is doing some extra presentations also at the Teatro Maison de France. Unfortunately, it will finish at the end of the year.
And to close 2019, there is also “O Despertar da Primavera”, a musical that is supposed to finish its presentations on the 20th of December, at the Theatro Net Rio. However, it is scheduled to be presented next year in São Paulo, but up to now I have no further information on this matter.
I wish to finish this article by saying that 2020 has already some interesting things promised to the Rio audiences. I will certainly keep you posted when I have further news. And obviously when I see the plays!
Best wishes for a Happy New Year!
(*) Ewa Procter is a writer and a theatre translator, and
Chair of the Instituto Cultural Chiquinha Gonzaga.