Alice in Bed to open on the Small Stage

On Friday, 8 November at 20.00, the first Slovenian staging of Alice in Bed by the famous American philosopher, a literary icon of the 1960s and versatile author Susan Sontag will open on the Small Stage. Sontag’s first and only published play in its entirety and in which the author addresses in an in-depth way the issue of women, their anguish and self-awareness, is directed and set designed by Dorian Šilec Petek. The play in eight scenes was translated into Slovenian by Darja Dominkuš and features the actors Maša Derganc, Sabina Kogovšek, Vojko Zidar, Saša Tabaković, Iva Babić, Eva Jesenovec, Veronika Drolc and Timon Šturbej. Other members of the creative include Staša Prah (dramaturg), Dorian Šilec Petek (set designer), Tina Bonča (costume designer), Mitja Vrhovnik Smrekar (composer), Tatjana Stanič (language consultant) and Andrej Hajdinjak (lighting designer). The dates of the first repeat performances in November are 9, 11, 15, 16, 18, 26, 27 and 30.

Susan Sontag wrote Alice in Bed in two weeks in January 1990. Ten years earlier, in Rome, during the final rehearsals for Luigi Pirandello’s As You Desire Me, she had reportedly seen Alice in her dreams from the start to the ending. »I suppose I have beep preparing for Alice in Bed all my life; to write a play about female sadness and anger, and, after all, a play about imagination. About the reality of a mental prison. About the triumph of imagination. But the triumphs of imagination are not sufficient,« wrote Sontag in her Note on the Play, translated and published in the theatre programme in a piece entitled The Brilliant Sister.  

The play, divided into eight scenes and called fiction by Sontag, is based on a real-life person. Alice James (played by Maša Derganc) was the only daughter and youngest of five children in an extremely highly regarded American family of the 19th century. His father, the heir to a large business, made a name for himself as a writer on religious and moral issues. A strong-willed eccentric who had lost his leg at the age of thirteen, he was the principal teacher of his children and had taken them to Europe several times in early childhood. When Alice James was thirty, she supposedly confronted her father with her desire to commit suicide. At first, he scolded her vehemently, and then gave her his assent. In 1884, Alice moved to London, where her brother Henry (Harry, played by Saša Tabaković) had settled down, and she spent the next seven and a half years bedridden, until her death from breast cancer.

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