YOU ARE LYING, MELITA
YOU ARE LYING, MELITA
Directed by: Bojan Đorđev
Theatrical adaptation: Sena Đorović
Set design: Siniša Ilić
Costume design: Мaja Mirković
Stage movement: Čarni Đerić
Мusic: Мarko Grubić
Costume Design Assistant: Sanja Aćimović
Melita: VLADISLAVA ĐORĐEVIĆ
Brother: ЈOVO MAKSIĆ
Dad: МILOŠ SAMOLOV
Mum: МАRIJANA VIĆENTIJEVIĆ BADOVINAC
Friend Verica: DUŠICA SINOBAD
Friend Šilja: NENAD RADOVIĆ
Painter: SENA ĐOROVIĆ
Dog: ČARNI ĐERIĆ
Date of premiere: 23 October 2008
Аuthor: Ivan Kušan / Sena Đorović
Stage: Children Stage
The performance is based on a novel by Ivan Kušan, which was translated into a Croatian television series in 1984. Melita, like many other children of her age, loves to speak untruth. However, when Melita realises how her fictional story would look like in reality, she begins to understand how words can shape reality. Theatrical adaptation was done by Sena Đorđević and the performance was directed by Bojan Đorđević. Cast: Vladislava Đorđević, Jovo Maksić, Miloš Samolov, Marijana Vićentijević Badovinac, Dušica Sinobad, Nenad Radović, Sena Đorović and Čarni Đerić.
ABOUT THE DIRECTOR
Bojan Đorđev was born in 1977 in Belgrade. He graduated in stage and radio directing at the Faculty of Dramatic Arts in 2001, and acquired his Master’s degree at the University of Arts in Belgrade. He is a PhD candidate at the same University. He is a co-author, director and performer of numerous theatrical and performing projects in Belgrade and abroad. He is one of the co-founders of TkH (Walking Theory) platform and journal for performing arts theory (since 2001).
2008 - I. Sajko, “Woman-bomb”, Belgrade Drama Theatre;
2008 - ”Frida Kahlo - una pierna y tres corazones”, Museum of Contemporary Art;
2007 - I. Sajko, “Europa + Rio Bar”, Centre for Cultural Decontamination, Magacin in Kraljevića Marka Street;
2006 - ”L`Annee derniere + Solitude”, Stuttgart - Belgrade;
2005 - ”Operrra (is of female gender)”, Belef - Belgrade Summer Festival, Botanical Gardens “Jevremovac”;
2005 - R. Valser, “No Name: Snow White”, Little Theatre Duško Radović (39th Bitef);
2004 - TkH, digital performance “Psychosis and Death of the Author”, net play-room Plato Plus (38th Bitef);
2004 - ”Actress (Work) in Progress”, Stuttgart - Belgrade;
2003 - S. Vujanović, “The Last Death of Frenkie Teardrop”, Little Theatre Duško Radović;
2002 - ”The Dracula Project”, Theater des Augenblicks/Les Subsistances, Vienna-Lyon;
2001 - ТkH, “DreamOpera”, Teatro Tartini, Piran;
2000 - S. Šnajder, “Snake`s Slough”, Centre for Cultural Decontamination
Artistic residency: Akademie Schloss Solitude, Stuttgart, 2004 and 2005/6
MELITA CANNOT LIE
Why do children lie? To manipulate others? To mislead them? To get what they want? Quite possibly. But perhaps simply – because they can! Because it is easy. The skill of lying is one of the most exciting discoveries of childhood, one of the fundamental discoveries of one’s own power. Let us imagine that somebody can read our mind – is there anything more terrifying? A lie is in fact evidence that others have no such power over us. Thus, when a person sees through our lies, he or she has read our minds. Melita seems to find herself in such a “twilight zone”: her lies suddenly begin to come true. This is not a matter of any supernatural phenomenon – she is neither psychic nor capable of magically materialising her ideas. It is all the result of a cunning conspiracy of her dearest ones to cure her from the habit of lying by making all her lies come true. Thus Melita is caught in the web of lies – her own and those of others. Her weapon turns against her. And yet, Melita is not exactly capable of distinguishing between lying and thinking aloud, creating alternative variations of events she is thinking about, so she always tells a more dramatic, more exciting, more dangerous one. It seems that her lying is quite pointless – in fact, it is not real lying, but uncontrolled, even unmotivated reshaping of reality.
But when her life gets out of hand along the lines of her own tales, alarmed Melita discovers another power – the power of words to shape reality. But also the responsibility for using that power. And perhaps, having this new awareness, Melita will eventually learn to lie.
AS LONG AS THE MOON DOES NOT FALL
Imagination is one of the most important capabilities of human soul. By combining the perceived and reflective contents, it helps a person to get to know the world better and change it according to one’s own wishes. It is a driver of any creative work.
Like all the other capabilities, imagination is not equally developed in all people. It is individual by nature. This is most evident in children, who spend a large part of their childhood in imagination and with imagination, until they discover the real world.
Inspired by children`s imagination, Ivan Kušan wrote a novel for children entitled “You Are Lying, Melita”. It is a story about a girl called Melita - a “fabricator” who keeps making up terrible events and drives everybody around her crazy: her father, mother, brother, school friends. In order to cure her from this “bad” habit, they unite in thwarting every lie of hers. The whole undertaking lasts until one of Melita`s most terrible lies comes true - that a bear attacked the dog. Faced with her imagination, Melita shouts: “What would Dad and Nenad do had I invented that ... say, the moon has fallen, eh?”
In order to improve ourselves, we must constantly develop all our capabilities, imagination included, or as little Melita would say, we must invent things - both true and false, and even incredible events. Let us invent anything we like, as if Aristotle were far away, or deaf for a long time, as long as we take care not to harm anybody or tear down the moon.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Ivan Kušan was born in 1933 in Sarajevo. Since 1939 he has lived in Zagreb where he completed high school and graduated from the Academy of Visual Arts, Department of Painting.
Since 1953 he has published articles and short stories in numerous periodicals and newspapers, and has also translated from various languages: English, French, Russian and Czech. When he was ten, he discovered his literary talent and wrote his first novel, and his first book was published in 1956. He wrote in many literary genres. He has been very successful in writing novels for children, some of which, including ”You Are Lying, Melita” and “Koko in Paris”, have become very popular. He also writes plays for radio, theatre and television. He is the author of TV serial “The Glorious Twenty”. He also illustrated the first editions of his books.
Books for children and youth:
“Alert on Green Peak”, “Koko and the Ghosts”, “Koko in Knin”, “Mysterious Boy”, “Homework”, “You Are Lying, Melita”, “Terrible Cowboy”.
Kušan`s books were translated into a number of world languages. He was the first Yugoslav candidate for Hans Christian Andersen Literature Award, the greatest international award for children`s literature. “Homework” won the City of Zagreb Award, and “Koko in Paris” won Grigor Vitez Award and Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić Award in 1972. He also received the City of Vršac Award for “Čaruga” at Sterija Theatre Festival and the Order of Danica with the face of M. Marulić.
In the 1950s, Ivan Kušan worked in Radio Zagreb. In the period 1980-1994 he taught at the Academy of Dramatic Arts in Zagreb. He is a member of Croatian Academy of Science and Arts.