“What I mean is this: our immediate need is to eat, but it is even more important not to waste the pure energy of being hungry simply on satisfying that immediate need.”
From the press release
The Theatre of Cruelty is – after 25 years of artistic activity – showing a world premiere of Henrik Ibsen’s unfinished work Svanhild 1860, from 14 March 2014. The company is in this seeing a sequel to their staging of Ibsen’s operatic fragment The Mountain Bird in 2009, a performance that still is traveling the world. Ibsen wrote Svanhild a year after The Mountain Bird. Thus he let two manuscripts remain unfinished when Love’s Comedy was completed in 1862. As in The Mountain Bird the female title role is crucial. Svanhild is a strong and independent character, pointing towards several of Ibsen’s later female characters.
Svanhild takes place on a bright summer’s day in the bourgeoisie of Skillebekk in Oslo, where people live sheltered an protected. The atmosphere is characterized by etiquette and conformity. Notions of the outside world is distorted or non-existent. This reflects a fascist idea that any violation of an illusory harmony must be removed at all costs. Can The Theatre of Cruelty by drawing a line from Antonin Artaud and through Mrs. Halm’s sheltered garden, 150 years back in time, give Ibsen’s play unexpected actuality?
From the press
“Svanhild” is an unfinished work, with all it opens up of mythology, and being performed for the first time. Only this is a reason to see the play. In addition, it is quite enjoyable.
Hild Borchgrevink, Dagsavisen
This successful performance’s force is: The good fingertip feel for the era and environment, and a satirical sting that goes fine hand in hand with genuine cheerfulness.
Inger Merete Hobbelstad, Dagbladet
The fragmentary, short nature of the play also helps to make it all even more concise and striking.
Giuliano D’Amico, Dag og Tid
Among other, in his completed interpretation of “Svanhild” Lars Øyno directs the spotlight on a hitherto neglected theme in Ibsen’s writing. The typical, and here quite infamous playing style of The Theatre of Cruelty extradite the young Ibsen immature notions of man’s right to literally scarify women to realize their artistic dreams.
Idalou Larsen, idalou.no
Kirsti Sørlie Hansen
Odille Heftye Blehr
Filip Amundsen Stav
Randolf Walderhaug (2014)
Karen Høybakk Mikalsen
Gjøril Bjercke Sæther
Rolf Christian Egseth Jan Skomakerstuen
Vera Krohn-Svaleng (2014)