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Work in progress

Premiere: Teatro delle Passioni, Modena, 17/05/2018

About this event

The project aims to develop through theatre means a fictional performance inspired by interviews realized in the city of Modena on the topic of work: working conditions today, value of work, job interviews, free time, human interactions in the public space, ”invisible” workers, competition, solidarity or lack of solidarity, dreams and abuses, evolution of the concept of “work” in the last decades, disappearing crafts, new jobs, mobility and its consequences, hopes and fears for the future.
The process will start with discussions and improvisations with the actors around the theme. A list of questions will be made together will all the participants and this will be the base for the interviews. The questions will try to open a larger discussion: how are we defined by our work today and in what ways are we participating to the public sphere. Each participant will have the task to make 7 interviews with people working in different fields, with different backgrounds, different age. The interviews will be recorded and afterwards written down and presented to the whole group of participants. The third step will consist in discussions on the material, a selection of the most interesting situations and also improvisations on the selected material. The scenario will be inspired by these meetings with the stories of the people met during the interviews and also by the way the group will react to this theme. While preparing the concept of the scenario we will search for ways of creating and acting as a group, interrogating in the same time our own work field as artists today. The Romanian set designer and visual artist Mihai Păcurar will join the process and he will respond to the selected materials, improvisations and discussions, developing the concept of space for the performance. The scenario will be written by me after all this process and it will aim to involve all the participants equally. Reflecting on the concept of working today in an European city is a way of reflecting on our own relation to work and to the audience we are addressing to.
The title of the project, Work in progress, refers to the fact that we will start with no script, with just with a theme for reflection and research, but it also refers to the invitation to discuss and try to see different aspects of the way we perceive work in our society: is it a way of surviving, is it a burden, is it a way of fulfilling our desire of being and building something together, in what way it defines us as individuals and also as participants to a larger group? The title for the performance will be decided during the process.

Gianina Cărbunariu is a Romanian based director and playwright. She usually does research through interviews or studies different archives on topics concerning nowadays social and political subjects, but also themes connected with the Romanian and European recent past. The material gathered during the period of research becomes a base for improvisations with the actors during the rehearsal. The fictional performance is the result of the meeting of the entire artistic team with different aspects of the reality observed, discussed and questioned together. She works as a free lance and sometimes she (co)-produced with her associations dramaAcum (from 2005 until 2012) and Piese Refractare (from 2016). Some of her performances were co-produced or produced by Odeon Theatre in Bucharest, National Theatre in Sibiu, International Festival from Nitra, Avignon Festival and National Theatre in Brussels. In 2014, the performance Solitaritate (produced by National Theatre in Sibiu, Avignon Festival and National Theatre in Brussels in the frame of Cities on Stage project) was presented in the official selection in Avignon. In 2016, the performance Tigern based on her text was produced by the Swedish company Jupither Josepson and presented in the official selection of Avignon festival.

Recent performances: Artists Talk, produced by Arcub and co-produced by Piese Refractare is nominated for the Best Performance of the Year (National Theatre Artists in Romania Awards – UNITER), Vorbiți Tăcere?/Sprechen Sie Schweigen? and Ordinary People, both shows produced by the National Theatre in Sibiu, For Sale, produced by Odeon Theatre Bucharest and awarded as the Best Performance of the year in 2015 by UNITER, Tipografic Majuscul, produced by dramAcum at Odeon Theatre Bucharest, Sold Out, produced by Kammerspiele Theatre Munich.
Her plays were translated in more than 15 foreign languages and staged by other directors in different theatres in Europe such as Royal Court London, Schaubuhene Berlin, Kammerspiele Munich, Royal Dramatic Theatre Stockholm and also in Canada, USA, Japan, Israel, Turkey, Chile.
Participations in festivals and international tours with the original production: New Plays from Wiesbaden, Wiener Festwochen, Avignon festival, LIFT London, HAU Berlin, Liege International Festival, National Theatre in Brussels, Abadia Madrid, CND Madrid, Valladolid International festival, Wrolclav Dialog Festival, New Drama Moscow, TransAmerique Festival in Montreal, New Drama Budapest, Premiere Festival Strasbourg, Nitra International Festival etc.
Her plays were published by Acts Sud Paris, Oberon Books London, Dialog Theatre Review Poland etc.

Artistic Data

direction Gianina Cărbunariu
set design, lighting ,costumes Mihai Păcurar
with Francesca Camurri, Enrico Caroli Costantini, Roberta De Stefano, Vladimir Doda, Luigi Feroleto, Michele Galasso, Mattia Giordano, Leo Merati, Federica Ombrato, Giulia Quadrelli, Chiara Sarcona, Maria Vittoria Scarlattei, Giacomo Stallone, Marco Trotta, Valentina Vandelli, Maria Luisa Zaltron
a production of Work in progress • Production Emilia Romagna Teatro