zaterdag 1 januari 2011

august strindberg - droomspel

On April 17 1907 'A Dream Play' was performed for the first time. A note in his diary on the same day shows how he felt about the play: he calls it "my most beloved play, the child of my greatest pain". A Dream Play was written in the autumn of 1901, when Strindberg had recently married Harried Bosse. But the dream of marital happiness is momentarily crushed when Harriet leaves home "forever". Strindberg suffers alone for forty days, reaching the conclusion that life is an illusion that never fulfils our dreams. At the end of the year the play was finished.
A Dream Play was maybe the first drama to employ a dream-like reality as a genre-in-itself. Traditionally plays have incorporated scenes illustrating dreams or nightmares, but none have based an entire play around them. By doing this, Strindberg abandoned conventional perceptions of time and space. He had reduced his original theme, of the man waiting vainly at the theatre for his fiancee who never comes, to a sub plot; his chief character now was Indra's Daughter, the child of a god who is sent by her father to live among mortals. She meets and marries a poor man's lawyer, who spends his life vainly trying to right the wrongs of humanity; so she endures the agonies of human existence until, at last, she puts off mortal flesh and returns to her father.