Magyar
Season 2017-2018

A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Love, erotic desires, deceit and persistent loyalty are eternal issues of both life and theatre. Midsummer Night is the shortest night of the year, when, according to old beliefs, anything can happen, wishes come true and lovers are united. The setting of A Midsummer Night’s Dream is a mysterious forest, where young lovers chase each other – and become totally entangled on the way - until, with the help of a little magic, everyone ends up by the side of their chosen partner.

A Midsummer Night’s Dream

A Midsummer Nigth’s Sex Comedy

Three couples, one weekend cottage, Midsummer Night’s madness, and Woody Allen’s matchless sense of humour.
Andrew, the crazy inventor and his unhappy wife invite their friends over for a long weekend. Professor Leopold is preparing to marry the attractive Ariel, who once had an affair with Andrew, who of course denies it all. Maxwell, the womanizer doctor also arrives together with his latest acquisition, the incredibly pretty nurse, Dulcy. At the swish of Woody Allen’s magic wand emotions break loose, promising a truly witty and erotic night at the theatre.
Our production of Woody Allen’s Play It Again Sam has been an ongoing success for over 30 years with András Kern in the leading role.

A Midsummer Nigth’s Sex Comedy

A Song from Far Away

New York. A winter’s day. Willem’s phone rings. His mother is calling to tell him that his brother died and he has to go home. A journey back to the old home. Arriving in Amsterdam. As Willem decides to write a letter to his deceased brother his memories storm him. The abandoned love left behind. His otherness and the life it created. As he is composing his letter he has to reconsider his life and his relationship with his cold and dismissive family. It dawns on him that his emotions and affections lead him somewhere totally different. With the brilliant young actor, László Józan in the leading role.
It is our great pleasure that we succeded in inviting Oscar winning film director, István Szabó, who has not worked in theatre for a long time, to direct this very personal and peculiar performance.

A Song from Far Away

A Streetcar Named Desire

When southern belle Blanche Dubois arrives to stay with her sister Stella in New Orleans she is confronted by a shockingly different culture and heated surroundings, embodied by Stella\'s brutish, sensual husband Stanley.

Blanche\'s past soon catches up with her and her fragile mind begins to weaken. In a searing allegory of changing times the simmering confrontation between Blanche, with all her pretensions and delusions, and the primal, working-class force of nature that is Stanley is played out on a knife edge, with devastating consequences.

A Streetcar Named Desire

Bonfire

Bonfire is about the anomalies of life in Romania following the fall of dictator, Nikolai Ceaușescu, as seen through the eyes of a young teen, Emma. The girl lost both her parents and her home and is taken into the care of her magical grandmother. Emma is struggling to liberate her soul from her parents’ and grandparents’ psychological burdens, but in order to succeed first she needs to see her family’s past clearly. How does one deal with one’s past when their country has just been liberated?

Bonfire

Comedy of errors

The place is Ephesos, a big, crowded city, where two newcomers are wandering about, Antipholus and Dromio from Syracuse. They have no idea about the well known fact that Ephesos also has its own Antipholus and Dromio, and they look very much alike, as they are seperated twins. The pairs of twins are completely mixed up. The two Antipholus and the two Dromios desperately want to find out what is going on, but it is not so easy to follow…
There comes a jealous wife and her ignorant sister, a bracelet worth a royal crown and its pushy maker, a miserable businessman and a homeless woman, and nothing is the same as it was. The popular burgess is rejected from his own home and the innocent visitor is pushed into it. A mad turmoil whirls around - until the happy ending.
The two pairs of twins are played by two actors only: Pindroch Csaba and Csőre Gábor change their clothes and identities at a crazy speed. Eszenyi Enikő brings modern busy streetlife to the stage of the Vígszínház. The characters are so familiar that we must admit at the end: nothing has changed in the last 400 years...

Comedy of errors

Crime and Punishment

Dostoyevsky is the greatest depictor of the human soul. His famous crime novel tells the story of a brutal murder and the investigation that follows. Is there a situation that allows, what is more, demands the killing of a human? The question not only fascinates Raskolnikov, but it is equally important for us in a world wounded by raging wars and terrorism.

Crime and Punishment

Earthquakes in London

Earthquakes in London is a play by Mike Bartlett. It received its world premiere at the Royal National\'s Cottesloe Theatre on 4 August 2010, following previews from 29 July 2010. The production was directed by Rupert Goold in a co-production with Headlong.
The play centres on the lives and loves of three sisters, abandoned long ago by their doom-mongering father. The father is a prominent climate scientist played by Bill Paterson, who predicts environmental apocalypse. The eldest sister is a cabinet minister who plans to halt all airport expansion, choosing environment over economy. The middle sister is heavily pregnant and growing increasingly depressed about the uncertain future her child is being born into. The youngest sister is a rebellious teenager and frequent nuisance to her career-minded eldest sister. As the three women attempt in their own different ways, to come to terms with the fact their father\'s pessimistic forecasts may be right, Freya, the middle sister contemplates suicide to avoid bringing her child into an apocalypic future and an opportunity presents itself for reconciliation with their estranged misanthropic father.

Earthquakes in London

Encounter

"It is not the story that I am interested in in the theater. Nor am I interested in so-called ideas. That is a matter for literature and philosophy. In theater it is the system of relations emerging between live bodies that I am interested in. The image, although not in the sense of the word in which it is used in the fine arts. I am interested in the motion picture of live bodies... I tried to rely on the musical qualities of language. I wanted to create a subtle linguistic medium, in which actors are required to speak with the inner connections of their entire bodies." (Péter Nádas)

Peter Nadas’s drama trilogy, entitled Cleaning, Meeting, and Funeral, is not among the most popular works of Hungarian literature. Although in the last three decades it has received a few stagings, none of them achieved relevance. Could this be because – and this was recently claimed by the author, Peter Nadas, in an interview – they are not good enough? One thing is certain: all three dramas are rooted in the Eastern Europe of the 70s and 80s. Nevertheless, the issues raised in the texts – power, affection, love, and human relations – are definitely timeless. So why do the theatres not keep them in repertory? Probably because of the sharp, model-like situations and the reduced, though powerfully lyrical language. The dramatic texts are evidently organized like musical compositions. That is why psychological-realistic interpretations of them tend to end in failure.

Encounter

Free Exchange Hotel

Georges Feydeau is the creator of an insanely happy universe. He is capable of tormenting his audience with three hours of nonstop laughter. A grand engineer of theatrical effects, he accurately observes human games and presents them with gleeful irony. In Free Exchange Hotel men and women frantically chase each other and their desires from one hotel room to the next, losing the meaning of life and their pants on the way. In Feydeau’s comedies, under the brightly polished surface hide the horrors of life, which Jean Cocteau compared to the world of Franz Kafka.

Free Exchange Hotel

Hamlet

Hamlet, the heir to the Danish throne, arrives home to the funeral of his father. He finds his mother married to his uncle, the new king. Mourning turns into a wedding. However, Hamlet cannot find peace, he is tormented by questions and doubts and starts to investigate. Hamlet, Horatio, Laertes, Rosencrantz, Guildenstern and Fortinbras are peers of a young generation. They study abroad, start life together, but all meet with a different fate. In addition to which they have to carry their fathers’ fates as well. Where will each of them end up? It is one of the questions the performance strives to answer.

Hamlet

I Wanted to Remain Silent

“I’d like to tell you about what happened to bourgeois culture during the ten years, which began on the day of the Anschluss, the end of the Austrian independence.” Márai intended his work to be the third and final volume of Confessions of a Civilian. However, it remained forgotten among the author’s heritage until 2013. The manuscript is dated to 1950, so it could be regarded as Márai’s first completed work as a émigré. The author chose the starting date to be the day of the Anschluss in 1938, which he regarded as the death of Europe as we had known it. I Wanted to Remain Silent is a confession about an era lacking values, and also a precise account of bourgeois Europe and Hungary, interpreted by the magnificent actor, Géza Hegedűs D.

I Wanted to Remain Silent

Kelet-nyugati pályaudvar (Cseh Tamás-est)

Kelet-nyugati pályaudvar (Cseh Tamás-est)

Love’s Labours Lost

Ferdinand, King of Navarre, and his three noble companions take an oath not to give in to the company of women. They devote themselves to three years of study and fasting. On the very same day the Princess of France and her three lady-in-waitings arrive in town and turn the well-constructed plan upside down. Scheming, breaching of vows and misunderstandings pave the road to love through the thick shrubbery of rhymes. Love’s Labours Lost is Shakespeare’s most playful comedy, boasting more than 246 puns.

Love’s Labours Lost

Mikveh

Hadar Galron’s poignant but also freshly funny play takes in a bath for women, in a mikveh. MIkveh is a ritual bath where women once in a month purify before they sexually contact with their husbands. These 8 women in different ages are regulated by religious rules and try to fight for their freedom, rights and accceptance in a world dominated by men. Hadar Galron contemporary Israeli playwright wrote this play in 2004 and ever since it became a world-wide success. The Hungarian premiére is directed by Michal Docekal, director of National Theatre Prague.

Mikveh

Nine Parts of Desire

Nine Iraqi women’s painfully honest account of the horrors of war and the hardships of living in a society ruled by men. The thought-provoking play by Iraqi-American contemporary playwright, Heather Raffo, on stage in Hungary for the first time.

Nine Parts of Desire

Orpheus and Eurydice

Dancers Zoltán Grecsó and Beatrix Simkó present a truly unique interpretation of the popular love story by placing the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice in today’s world. They show us the tight contrast between the world of the myth and present day life, as they also demythologize their heroes. The simple but strong visual world of the performance is designed by Dániel Dömölky, the soundscape by sound designer Ábris Gryllus.

Orpheus and Eurydice

Over the Smear-mountain

The wicked Splotch Tsar wants to smear the whole world and cover it with splotch while a group of barbarian cleaners – led by Attila Broom – threatens the Smear-mountain residents with extreme cleanliness. Andris Muhi a leery guy has to save all the people in the Smear-realm but especially Janka, the snottiest girl in the neighborhood. Before the last battle Andris passes the Land of Drool, resist the temptation of Babyface Demon and lives through a lot of funny, strange and heroic adventures.

Over the Smear-mountain

Play It Again, Sam!

Allen Felix, the New York intellectual with those unmistakeable glasses - is in a deep crisis: his wife left him, he lives alone in his NY apartement contemplating about the mistakes he had committed... meanwhile he is stricken by fantasies. He starts talking to his favourite movie hero, Humprey Bogart, expecting to learn the secret of how to become a successful, irresistable man... Based upon the famous Woody Allen movie, this play is in the repertory for 25 years now, with Kern András playing the Hungarian Woody Allen.

Play It Again, Sam!

Quartet

A couple is living their everyday life in a block, when a stranger, a Hungarian from America appears on their doorstep claiming that the head of the family saved his life back in 1956. He is here now to express his gratitude, but strangely the paterfamilias doesn’t want any of the expensive gifts.

Quartet

Tell Me, Attila, My Dear!

What does Attila József mean to us? We know his life. We all have our favourite József poem. We keep reinterpreting his lines, as we grow older. But we rarely consider the devastating passion and yearning to love, which burned inside him. Sándor Márai wrote about him in his diary: “With the power of madness, with a single word Attila József reached deeper than anyone else had done before him.” Miklós Vecsei H.’s solo performance draws on this depth, it is from this place that he tries to present us the poet’s walk of life, his loves and poetry - not far from the lowest stone of the embankment.

Tell Me, Attila, My Dear!

The Attic

This Attic is the most extraordinary place, where anything can happen, just like in tales. Here, between sky and earth, a young scientist tries to develop the most intelligent computer ever, spending all his energies on this job. But all of a sudden mortal and immortal creatures appear in the attic and start disturbing him. What he has to understand now is more difficult than the job he did: that he has nothing to do with the world he knew about so far... This musical is deeply the Vígszínház’s own: it was born here and it is uninterruptedly on the repertory since its opening: 29 January, 1988. This year (2008) we celebrated the 20th anniversary of our most beloved attic.

The Attic

The Audience

One queen. Twelve prime ministers. Sixty years. Queen Elisabeth II is the most significant reigning monarch of the twentieth century and our times. The play is centred on the weekly audiences given by her to her prime ministers: Winston Churchill, Margaret Thatcher, John Major, and David Cameron among others. Not only we can get an insight into the hardships of governance, but we can get to know one of the most amiable, witty and inspirational personalities of our time and the ministers serving her country.

The Audience

The Balloon Flies Away

Whichever stage of our life we may be in, may our tune be happy or sad, the writings of Dezső Kosztolányi, much-loved Hungarian poet of the early 20th century, always remind us how our journey here on earth could be more harmonious and cheerful if we keep an open heart and the child within.

The Balloon Flies Away

The Cruicible

The Crucible is a 1953 play by the American playwright Arthur Miller. It is a dramatized and partially fictionalized story of the Salem witch trials that took place in the Province of Massachusetts Bay during 1692 and 1693. Miller wrote the play as an allegory of McCarthyism, when the U.S. government blacklisted accused communists. Miller himself was questioned by the House of Representatives\' Committee on Un-American Activities in 1956 and convicted of contempt of Congress for refusing to identify others present at meetings he had attended.

The Cruicible

The Director

Following the success of his previous play, Doom, Attila Bartis has written yet another disturbing and ruthless story for the Vígszínház. The play takes place in a theatre and is full of deep secrets, painful and smouldering lies, as are the private lives of the actors. János, the witer-dierctor is in rehearsal for his new play. In the heat of the intensive work real life and life on stage, private lives and the horrors of the fifties mingle almost unnoticeably. The line between lie and reality appears to be very very thin. Who betrayed who? The past is there to haunt everyone.
To our great joy, Attila Bartis received yet another literary prize in May 2016. His novel The End, was awarded the public’s prize of the Libri Literary Awards.
Directed by Rémusz Szikszai, this performance is the Vígszínház’s tribute to the 1956 revolution.
 

The Director

The Escape

The Escape

The Good Soul of Szechwan

Starring Enikő Eszenyi, Tamás Lengyel, Béla Fesztbaum, Máté Mészáros, Péter Telekes and Áron Molnár and more

The play is one of Bertolt Brecht\'s most popular and enduring works. Three gods come to earth in search of a thoroughly good person and encounter Shen Teh, a good-hearted but penniless prostitute, who offers them shelter. Rewarded with enough money to open a tobacco shop. "Angel of the Slums" Shen Teh soon becomes so overwhelmed by the demands of people seeking assistance that she invents a male alter ego, "Tobacco King" Shui Ta, to deal ruthlessly with the business of living in an evil world. The Good Person of Szechwan is a masterpiece of minimalist design and elegance that considers the fundamental qualities of human nature and social mores.
The play is directed by Michal Dočekal, who is the present artistic director of the National Theatre in Prague.

The Good Soul of Szechwan

The Guard

The story revolves around a husband-and-wife acting team. The husband suspects his wife of infidelity, so he disguises himself as a guardsman with a thick accent, woos his wife under his false identity, and ends up seducing her.

The Guard

The Idiot

Saint Petersburg, 1869. The gap between rich and poor is getting wider and wider. The sumptuously dressed leaders of the country do nothing but plump themselves. Money, selfishness and superficiality become priorities in everyday life. The streets are noisy and dirty.

The Idiot

The Imaginary Invalid

Argan a wealthy Parisian cares only about his imaginary diseases. This mania makes him selfish and tyrant. He believes only in medicine, pills, treatments – and in his young wife. Everybody who doubts or disagrees becomes an enemy in Argan’s eyes. That’s why he chooses a doctor for his daughter, Angelique, as well. But Angelique’s heart is already engaged…

The Imaginary Invalid

The Jungle Book

It is probably impossible to summarize this miraculous story of Mowgli, Bagheera who escaped from the cage of the human society, the wise Baloo, the mysterious Kaa or the vengeful Shere Khan. The Jungle Book is about birth and death, solitude and partnership, about the magic of youth – so everything which can happen with a kid who had grown up with wolves.

The Jungle Book

The labor of life

A peacefully sleeping couple in a king-size bed. It is the middle of the night when the husband feels a horrible pain in his chest. He is sure about an immediate heart-attack - and feels his death approaching . As he contemplates on his life, he feels more and more strongly that he wasted it, and blames this on his wife - who is sleeping next to him peacefully with a smile on her face... He becomes so angry with her that he pushes the wife to the floor; when she wakes up he tells her he is leaving immediately to find a new life and a new wife. But it is easy to say but not so easy to do...
The virtuoso play by Hanoch Levin relates the bitter-sweet and desperate fight between this couple. Their ongoing battle truly expresses the universal questions and difficulties of relationships.
Hanoch Levin is one of the most important figures of modern Israeli drama and theatre. During his short life - he died at the age of 57 - he wrote 56 plays. He also wrote fiction, cabaret pieces and lyrics, becoming an emblematic stage director.
The Requiem and The Labour of Life are Levin\'s most well-known plays for international audiences. The first one is composed from Chekhov\'s short stories and was performed in Budapest as well. Moreover, according to Ilan Eldad, the director of the above play, Requiem received the international public\'s attention after this tour. The other favourite, The Labour of Life, is also widely played all over the world. Its Hungarian text by Parti Nagy Lajos perfectly balances between ravish humour and tragedy.

The labor of life

The Master and Margarita

A zseniális orosz író, Mihail Bulgakov fő műve, A Mester és Margarita az egyetemes irodalomtörténet egyik legkiemelkedőbb, ugyanakkor legrejtélyesebb alkotása. Már a megjelenése sem volt zökkenőmentes: csak a perifériára szorított szerző halála után negyedszázaddal, 1966-67-ben láthatott napvilágot; azóta viszont az egyik legtöbbet olvasott és elemzett irodalmi mű – csak a legnagyobbakkal mérhető, valódi klasszikus alkotás, amelyet filmen és színházban is számtalanszor feldolgoztak. Rejtélyes a története is: a több szálon futó cselekménysor hol a Bulgakov-korabeli Moszkvába, hol Jézus és Poncius Pilátus bibliai Júdeájába repít, finoman összemosva a nagyon is valóságos, hétköznapi eseményeket a mitikus legendákkal. A mű bölcsességének, kérlelhetetlen humánumának erejével, súlyával megdöbbenti a nézőt, ugyanakkor a Mester és Margarita sorsán keresztül a világirodalom egyik legszebb és legfájdalmasabb szerelmi történetébe is bevezet minket.

The Master and Margarita

The Merchant of Venice

Portia, a wealthy heiress of Belmont, is forced to set her suitors a challenge. The winner will win her hand in marriage; the losers will lose her hand and much more. In Venice, the epicentre of consumption, speculation and debt, Bassanio borrows money from his friend Antonio to finance his attempt. Antonio, in turn, takes out a loan from the moneylender Shylock. The loan will be repaid when Antonio’s ships return to the city. But if the ships fail to return, and the money cannot be repaid, Antonio will give to Shylock a pound of his own flesh. And they do fail. And Shylock will have his ‘bond’.
In some of his most highly-charged scenes, Shakespeare dramatises the competing claims of tolerance and intolerance, religious law and civil society, justice and mercy; while in the character of Shylock he created one of the most memorable outsiders in all theatre.
The Merchant of Venice is a play by William Shakespeare in which a merchant in 16th century Venice must default on a large loan provided by an abused Jewish moneylender. It is believed to have been written between 1596 and 1598. Though classified as a comedy in the First Folio and sharing certain aspects with Shakespeare\'s other romantic comedies, the play is perhaps most remembered for its dramatic scenes, and is best known for Shylock and the famous "Hath not a Jew eyes?" speech. Also notable is Portia\'s speech about "the quality of mercy".

The Merchant of Venice

The One Who Has Nobody Under the Blue Skies

Based on accounts, letters and dairy entries of the time, through the life story of János Arany, the play strives to bring the mentality of the time’s great figures closer to the man of our times. By presenting us the human relationships of the Hungarian Reform Era and evoking the beliefs connected to the events of March 15, 1848, the production tries to unravel the connection between our lives today and the ideals of the 19th Century.

The One Who Has Nobody Under the Blue Skies

The Paul Street Boys

One of the most heartbreaking pieces of Hungarian literature, The Paul Street Boys touches both young and old. The Grund has become part of our collective consciousness and common language. We hear the brilliant cast sing the emotional melodies of Dés and Geszti, “The grund is ours!”. We all remember the einstand, when the red-shirted Pásztors steal Nemecsek’s favourite marbles, or the putty club, the botanic garden, the battle on the Grund and Nemecsek, who sacrifices himself for the Grund and his mates. These are key words filled with poetry and memories, which generations keep rediscovering again and again.
It was director László Marton, who established the tradition of producing new musical shows for the younger audiences and providing a unique opportunity for Hungarian composers. The latest of this series is The Paul Street Boys.

The Paul Street Boys

The Penthesilea Program

Réka Kincses is a young Hungarian film director, writer and playwright born in Tigru Mures, Romania and currently living in Germany. Her film, Campionul balcanic won the prize for best documentary film at the 38th Hungarian Film Festival in 2007. This production of The Penthesilea Program, directed by Kincses herself, is her debut in Hungary as a playwright. It is a family story spanning over generations as seen through the eyes of an exceptionally talented female author, filled with raw sexuality and outspokenness. Penthesilea, despite bearing the name of the Greek heroine, is a modern and neurotic young woman, who has to flee from her destiny determined by her past, and also from the tight and ambiguous relationship she has with her mother. Will she be able to find peace following a rollercoaster ride of one-night stands, abortions and a desperate theraputic treatment? The Studio has become a platform for presenting works by female playwrights, telling thought provoking stories of exceptional women. With Vígszínház’s young talent, Csenge Szilágyi in the leading role.

The Penthesilea Program

The Play’s the Thing

Two playwrights and a young composer come to an elegant seaside Italian castle. Nobody knows about their arrival. They want to surprise the composer’s lover, the famous prima donna, Annie, with the good news: their new operetta has been completed! But the moment is embarassing because the prima donna just japes with the aging actor, Almády… Certainly, the enamored and enthusiastic composer collapses and this scandalous situation can be solved only by a genius playwright’s idea…

The Play’s the Thing

The Prop Master

Eberhard Streul \'s monologue is about a theatre prop master\'s "evening of a lifetime". Joseph Bieder, the prop master, is doing his job: he is putting away the props from the stage after a theatre evening, as always, when suddenly he faces a full auditorium. From his immediate embarassment he pulls himself together and starts to tell about his life and job, about the theatre people he met, he tells funny, sometimes sentimental stories about actors he worked with, stories from and behind the scenes.

The play is adapted to the Hungarian stage by Lajos Parti Nagy, the virtuoso poet.
A co-production between the Vígszínház and the Orlai Productions.

The Prop Master

The Red Lion

The stage adaptation of Mária Szepes’ cult novel.
The Prima Materia potion makes you immortal. The story follows the journey of a restless soul as she keeps reincarnating throughout the centuries.

The Red Lion

The Sisters-in-Law

Friends and relatives gather to help Germaine lick the one million trading stamps she’s won into the books that can be exchanged for anything in the prize catalog. Germaine doesn\'t realize until the play\'s conclusion that while the women are all talking, they are also robbing her of her Gold Star stamps.

The Sisters-in-Law

The Symptoms present Sea Lavender

In this duet of two women, a 90-year-old Auschwitz-Birkenau survivor teams up with a young dancer. Evoking the past and fulfilling desires. Remembrance and the will to live. The euphoria of movement. Squeezing pleasure out of the moment, as if it was the last. Making plans in the cattle wagon. Sea Lavender is not a domesticated plant. It used to cover the planes around Debrecen. It grew accustomed to the saline soil. It belongs to the family of leadworths. It has an acrid scent. It’s a native plant.

The Symptoms present Sea Lavender

The Taming of the Shrew

The main plot depicts the courtship of Petruchio and Katherina, the headstrong, obdurate shrew. Initially, Katherina is an unwilling participant in the relationship, but Petruchio tempers her with various psychological torments—the "taming"—until she becomes a compliant and obedient bride.

The Taming of the Shrew

The Wizard of Oz

After a tornado whisks away a young Kansas farm girl, Dorothy, to the magical land of OZ, she starts her quest to find the mighty Wizard of Oz who has the power to send her home. Along the way she meets a Scarecrow, a Tin Woodsman and a Cowardly Lion who help her on her journey.

The Wizard of Oz

Toldi

A spectacular and modern performance of this classic piece of Hungarian literature by 19th century poet, János Arany.

Toldi

War and Peace

Lev Tolstoy considered War and Peace his greatest work, which was received with equal enthusiasm by the people of the time. Today the admiration towards the novel is unbroken. Following his hero and heroine’s fate, through passionate love affairs, tragedies, births and deaths, Tolstoy recounts the constantly changing relationship between East and West, Russia and Europe.

War and Peace