Varna Theatre stages yet another play by the Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen, the ‘Father of modern drama’, following an 80-year hiatus. Written in 1896, John Gabriel Borkman is a dramatic social and psychological portrayal of society back then.
For several years, banker John Gabriel Borkman has served a prison sentence for fraud. Upon his release, he embraces the life of a social hermit. Though completely estranged from his wife Gunhild, he continues to live with her in her sister Ella’s house. The two sisters start a fight over Borkman’s son, Erhard, whom Ella has been taking care of following the family’s bankruptcy.
Director Plamen Markov finds a mixture of different genres in this play – the tragic and the comic grotesque are interwoven in this play’s texture, further emphasized by a degree of exaggeration reminiscent of ancient drama. That’s the reason why the director has invited comedian Nikolay Urumov to play banker Borkman, notably for this actor’s ability to bring out tragic nuances. Plamen Markov has editted the play, rearranging the episodes into a mosaic, apllying cinematic editing, which provides a fresh approach to storytelling.