Old friends know each other very well. They have no problems with telling or hearing an honest opinion every now and again. But “shit” was not the reaction that Serge had expected. True, his newly acquired painting is radical in its purism and has the potential to divide opinions. After all, you can have a rational discussion about art and when personal tastes are involved, you can argue. But insults are taking it too far. In fact, it is a confirmation of his suspicion that Marc has become a little condescending and bitter as of late. Side by side with their third friend Yvan, who refuses to play the referee in this avant-garde trench warfare, shots are suddenly fired in all directions, with live ammunition and no regard for the consequences.
Along the edges of a square white oil painting, the cracks in a long-standing friendship become apparent. Casual trifles have hardened into veritable character traits and personal circumstances. The time to mention them has long passed. But they do provide reliable cause for irritation during their increasingly rare get-togethers. When the white painting becomes the catalyst for old frictions, everything the friends have held back for years breaks through. Nobody is pulling any punches. Everything that bothers them about each other is thrown down, unadorned, and quite en passant, their own dissatisfactions shine through. There is only one thing they can agree on: Surely, we can all take a joke?
This production of Yasmina Reza‘s world-wide success “Kunst (Art)” is a cooperation project between Schauspiel Leipzig and Kunsthalle der Sparkasse Leipzig and will be staged in the Kunsthalle’s exhibition halls.
Director Frank Hoffmann was born in Luxembourg and initially pursued an academic career in the fields of German Philology and Philosophy, before his path led to him to the theatre in Heidelberg. After working as a freelance director from 1983, he founded the Théâtre National du Luxembourg in 1996 and has been its artistic director ever since. Between 2004 and 2018, he was also the artistic director of Ruhrfestspiele Recklinghausen, which he expanded into one of the largest and most important European theatre festivals. “Kunst” is Frank Hoffmann’s first production at Schauspiel Leipzig in cooperation with the Théâtre National du Luxembourg and the Musée d’Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean.