Holidays, but being sober. After a noticeable win streak from capitalism in the yearly tender for the Christmas period, made of sugary candy canes, Coca-Cola commercials, Mariah Carey and Home Alone, the Dickens ghost of the Traditional-25th-of-December comes back on the throne. Stuffed turkey vs M&Ms, 18th century carols vs Jingle Bells Rock and, most of all, Jesus’ saga vs Macaulay Culkin.
Every religious person knows: the tale found in the Bible is a gem, written years before the Hollywood hero’s journey. The chosen one from Nazareth born into the deepest misery becomes the archetype of both Oliver Twist and many of the Star Wars characters. Every person who suffers from discriminations can identify itself with the Messiah, regardless of its faith.
Bernard-Marie Koltès, a homosexual playwright coming from the same era and place of Copi and Lagarce, knows how it is to be emarginated from the society. Died of AIDS in France in 1989, just 41 years old, he is today remembered for a one-of-a-kind style, widely built on a sense of suspension. Rather than the fast dialogues that became a trend among his British contemporaries, he preferred long, unnatural monologues.
The characters are often immigrants: one of the most well-known is the protagonist of Night Just Before the Forests, who can’t find anyone to host him on a rainy night. Also, the people in West Pier belong to many different races, made one from their desperation and armed with opportunism to make some profit from tragedies that happen to someone else. Black battles with dogs is often considered an African Antigone. Koltès moves the sense of loneliness and suffering deriving from his condition on people he feels are even less lucky: as an outcast takes care of other outcasts, narrating their lives (is there anything more human than that?), and doing so he speaks about his pain as well.
We wish you happy holidays and we suggest you, if you haven’t done that yet, to use them to dive into the world of this great author. When you’ll be done, you will be ready for this week’s challenge: which other social and political themes may meet a LGBT-related play?