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Refreshing “summer freshness” at Der Josefstadt Theater

Refreshing “summer freshness” at Der Josefstadt Theater

No, it's not a hot topic, but it's a timeless topic. No, it's not a rewrite or adaptation, but simply a production that takes the original seriously and doesn't add anything to it. But yes, Janusz Kicka's highly entertaining Carlo Goldoni's “Summer Freshness Trilogy,” which premiered Saturday at the Der Josefstadt Theater, shows that serious work on the comedy of human inadequacy is always in season.

Of course, one could argue that nearly three hours (including intermission) could be a bit long – but after a certain warm-up phase, the trials and tribulations of a clichéd upper-class society that focuses more on appearances than reality become . Vent specific take-off and perform technical rotations. Above all, this evening is a clear sign of life for the ensemble stage itself and evidence of the quality of the Josefstadt Ensemble in particular. There are 14 actors on stage – and there is hardly a person who does not master both: surface and depth, playing perfect lines and giving an idea of ​​the longing underneath.

This commentary characterizes the production of honorary member Josefstadt Kika, who made his debut at the house in 1999 and has followed it up with nearly two dozen works. On the one hand, it is based on Italianitá musically, starting the evening with the song “Azzurro” and as a result, several members of the band show their singing or musical talent, but on the other hand, this is not exaggerated, instead, designer Karin Fritz puts the event in A space of taste between abstraction and theatrical reality. The main burden of the event is borne not by the direction or stage design ideas, but by the interaction of the people on stage. There is a lot between the feeling of optimism after Montemar, that you can – whatever the cost – have a holiday worthy of your status, a holiday that brings out a lot of things that were already dormant before, and the sadness afterwards, there is a lot to see.

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Women are in charge here, but they are not really happy. The focus is on Juliette Larratt as Giacinta, who loves Guglielmo (Alexander Absinger) but is going to marry Leonardo (Claudius von Stolzmann), and Paula Nocker as Leonardo's sister Vittoria, who loves Guglielmo and will have him too, but suspects that won't happen. Her happiness is near. The two are led by their parents (exploited by everyone, but at the same time despised, Marcus Bloom), admirers and brothers by their whims, as well as their old peers (very funny: Marianne Nentwich) and young (always dissatisfied: Larissa Fuchs) no luck when choosing a partner.

While Andre Buhl as Fulgenzio is a bad puppet master who rules over others without hesitation, Marcello Di Nardo as a servant keeps everything going, Martina Stilp as Constanza spins the plots, and Rafael von Bargen as Filo Ferdinando primarily develops his own ego. A partnership built on honesty and affection seems possible only in servants (Katarina Klar and Markus Koffler). But Kika doesn't give them a happy ending.

There are some comedic elements (Mathias Franz Stein does the obligatory folding chair number) and beautiful performances using a moving wall, but also quiet scenes for two people. Kika masters the change of pace and lets the third act drift into melancholy. Finally, there was a standing ovation for a refreshing “summer break.” But before Josefstadt enters the summer, a decision must be made on the future artistic direction from 2026. The new can be happy. But one thing is certain: This won't be just a summer job.

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(By Wolfgang Huber Lange/APA)

(Service – Carlo Goldoni: “Summer Freshness Trilogy”, Director: Janusz Kika, Set and Costume Design: Karin Fritz. With: Markus Blum (Filippo/Bernardino, Leonardo's uncle), Juliette Larratt (Jacinta, his daughter), Claudius von Stolzmann (Leonardo , admirer of Giacinta), Paula Nocker (Vittoria, sister of Leonardo), Raphael von Bargen (Ferdinando), Alexander Absinger (Guglielmo, admirer of Giacinta), Andre Bühl (Fulgenzio, friend of Filippo), Catharina Klar (Brigida, maid of Giacinta), Markus Koffler (Paolo, Leonardo's servant), Marcello Di Nardo (Chico, Leonardo's servant), Marianne Nentwich (Sabina, Giacinta's aunt), Martina Stilp (Costanza), Larissa Fuchs (Rosina, her niece), Matthias Franz Stein (Tonino, admirer) Rosina, Theater at Der Josefstadt, upcoming shows: June 2, 14, 17, 21, tickets: 300-700 42/01,