[EN] With twenty-nine plays to his name, over fifty awards and prizes including the Nobel Prize in 2005 and the French “légion d’honneur” in 2007, playwright, screenwriter, director and actor Harold Pinter was undoubtedly one of the most influential and successful modern British dramatists.
Highly political with an urge to tackle all forms of oppression, political corruption and abuse of power with his characteristic sense of humour, Pinter showed all his trademark skills already in his second play: The Hothouse. Originally written in 1958 and then shelved for over twenty years by Pinter himself, it strikes today as an eerily prophetic piece with themes such as daily surveillance, disappearance of privacy and perma-nent control of our daily lives which at the time must have sounded like dystopian fiction.
A penitentiary in an authoritarian state run by a former military Colonel. Bureaucracy and corruption rule and the inmates are reduced to numbers. When one Christmas day, the cantankerous Colonel is confronted by a double crisis with the death of one inmate and the pregnancy of another, he finds himself increasingly cornered and sees the system he obeys so respectfully slip away.
The Hothouse is a blackly comic portrait of the insidious corruption of power, a deeply moral play suggesting that state-sanctioned torture and cruelty exist but are inexorably undermined by their dis- regard of the natural laws. And ultimately, it is a vivid portrait of a world so organised and controlled, that it loses all possibilities for individuality. It also depicts an acutely familiar world, where social dissidents, political challengers or truth harbingers are “cured” in closed institutions.
In order to re-create and enhance the chilling, claustrophobic and disturbing environment of the play, the Théâtres de la Ville are moving to an undisclosed location for this production. Anne Simon directs an international cast in an immer-sive, walk-through, multi-narrative, company-devised theatre experience which plunges the spectator right at the heart of the actual Hothouse!
Directed by Anne Simon
Mardi 30 MARS 2021 à 20h00 (tickets)
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