Cats die like people - Centro Dramático Nacional

Cats die like people

Dramaturgy and direction Dan Jemmett

8 MAY – 23 JUN 2024
From Tuesday to Sunday at 20:00 | Meeting with the artistic team: 4 JUN 2024 Accessible performances: 20 and 21 JUN 2024

FIRST WEEK DISCOUNT(50% discount): Tuesday 16 MAY and Thursday 18 MAY

Valle-Inclán Theatre | Sala Grande

Please arrive well in advance as the auditorium will be closed once the performance has begun.
To collect your tickets, our ticket offices will be open from Monday to Sunday from 14:30 to 20:30.

TEAM

Dramaturgy and direction

Dan Jemmett

Cast

Clemente García, Violeta Linde, Luís Moreno, Julia Piera, Nico Romero, Irene Serrano and others to be confirmed

Set designer

Adán Torres

Lighting

Felipe Ramos

Costume designer

Vanesa Actif

Video and sound design

Christopher Knighton

Playwright

Brenda Escobedo

Producer

Centro Dramático Nacional

Producer

Writer’s note

Heiner Müller’s 1980 play Quartet and Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s 1971 film Warnung vor einer heiligen Nutte (Attention to that Beloved Prostitute) express a radical critique of systems of power, both at the personal and institutional level. Violence, sociopathy, manipulation, control, imperialism, corruption, sexual delinquency are some of the central themes of these two artworks. In Quartet, a man and a woman confront each other in an increasingly theatrical sexual role-play, while in Warnung vor einer heiligen Nutte, the actors and crew of a film wait in a Spanish hotel for the money to continue filming.

The work of these two German artists in many ways corroborates the devastation and chaos of the post-World War II years. Both wrote plays and made films in which they addressed the damaged human psyche after persecution, destruction and madness had ended. Müller’s plays tend to seem more like fragmented and disordered than conventional plays, while Fassbinder’s films often portray emotionally charged claustrophobic environments in which the characters seem to be exhausting the denouements of some terrible endgame.

I would like to imagine a theatrical performance that uses motifs from Quartet and Warnung vor einer heiligen Nutte to create a new play, Cats die like people. In this new work, four performers sit in the foyer of a theatre waiting for the director of the play they are currently working on to continue rehearsals. The work is Quartet. The writer, Heiner Müller, is also present in this mix, as is the bar attendant. As relations within this group of people deteriorate into a sociosexual game, the director appears from time to time to rant against the working conditions in the theatre and the impossibility of realising his vision of the play.

Cats die like people is a meditation on two of the most pressing human states in existence: boredom and desire. It is also a tribute to the work of two of the most strikingly original artists of the 20th century.

Dan Jemmett (translation ny Luis Moreno)

TEAM

Dramaturgy and direction

Dan Jemmett

Cast

Clemente García, Violeta Linde, Luís Moreno, Julia Piera, Nico Romero, Irene Serrano and others to be confirmed

Set designer

Adán Torres

Lighting

Felipe Ramos

Costume designer

Vanesa Actif

Video and sound design

Christopher Knighton

Playwright

Brenda Escobedo

Producer

Centro Dramático Nacional

Biography

Dan Jemmet

Dan Jemmet

Co-founder of London’s Primitive Science theatre collective in the ’90s, whose works include Imperfect Librarian, which premiered at the Young Vic Theatre, and Hunger, performed at the Purcell Rooms. In 1998 he moved to Paris. Director in shows at the Theatre de la Ville (Shake, Dogface, Women Beware Women, The Little Match Girl), Les Bouffes du Nord (The Comedie of Errors, The Collected Works of Billy the Kid) and La Comédie Francaise (Les Precieuses Ridicules, Hamlet, La Grande Magie).

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He has also worked at Warsaw’s Polski Theatre (The Tempest, Twelfth Night, Tis Pity She’s a Whore), Montevideo’s Comedia Nacional (Othello, Mother Courage), and Madrid’s Teatro de La Abadía (El burlador de Seville, El Café, Nekrasov). He recently worked as director on Ira by Julián Ortega, due to premiere in March 2021.

Producer