Author Topic: Sarah Kane & 4.48 Psychosis  (Read 5614 times)

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Offline Iain Fisher

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Re: Sarah Kane & 4.48 Psychosis
« Reply #4 on: July 12, 2010, 01:11:22 PM »
An interesting reaction to 4.48 Psychosis, about the performance and not about the performance

Marguerite Duras wrote somewhere: “I went mad in the full light of reason.”

At one point in the play, Sarah Kane’s main character — tonight, phoning in through Huppert’s voice — must react to a psychiatrist lurking behind the stage’s diaphanous curtain. The doctor mocks her by saying:

“You don’t need a friend. You need a doctor.”

Huppert responds, in the only words in the play directly spoken to this man, a play that is nothing but inner dialogue aimed at Kane’s precarious mind, at the precarious audience…at me, at my friend:

“You are so wrong.”


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Re: Sarah Kane & 4.48 Psychosis
« Reply #3 on: March 03, 2010, 01:27:09 AM »
Ever since i read 4.48 i have been thinking how i would stage it.

I'd begin casually by passing a kitten around the audience. They would play with the cat and see how cute it is. The curtains would open reveling a complex stage including a huge clock that didnt tell the time but instead counted towards 04.48. From the clock would be a series of wires and car batteries connected to a metal cage. The kitten would then be put in the cage. The play would start at 3.48 and the finish exactly at 4.48. at 4.48 the kitten would be electrocuted which the audience would be made aware of as the play went on.

The kitten would put the audience on edge throughout the performance. "Will the kill the cat?" "Is this legal?" "Should i walk out?" "should i call the police?". The cat is a metaphor for suffering and metal illness. What better way of showing depression than showing death a poisoned minds. An actual play involving real danger, real fear.

And at 4.48 - would i actually kill the cat?
...yeah i think i would. Call me sick but i think that would be real art. REAL theatre.

Offline schwarz

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Re: Sarah Kane & 4.48 Psychosis
« Reply #2 on: March 02, 2010, 02:12:49 AM »
Your 4.48 project and mine are almost twins.  They began around the same time and both culminated in productions at around the same time.

I hadn't read 4.48 Psychosis until around a year ago.  But like you I was quickly intrigued by its language and its possibilities.  I immediately thought of proposing it to a small non-professional theatre group I belong to (EMU Theatre), but waited until I had a distinct idea of the direction the production would take before I proposed it to the board.  They agreed to the production and then we applied for the rights, which I thought we might not receive, especially after I found out that the University here in town was also putting on the same show.  But we were granted the rights, and rehearsals began in early December.

My conception of the show was to make it as naturalistic as possible.  I wanted to emphasize the psychological continuity.  There is so much dis-continuity and breakage in the play that it seemed like overkill to also highlight that aspect with the direction.  And of course there are some obvious limits of this approach.  I learned a lot about directing from the experience, about having to balance your original conception of a work with what it looks like when it's actually in front of you.

I also found, and the cast agrees, that it was a magical experience.  It is a universal play, that can be done in any number of ways, and all of them can lead to exciting and profound theatre.  The two links you posted both looked quite interesting.  I personally am looking forward to seeing the Kansas University production (coming up about a month) and seeing what its vision is like.  Here's a link to some photos of our production.  Hope the link works.  The production was a benefit for a local mental health center, and we had a talk-back after the show, which the last images are of. 

Hope your summary went well.  It sounds as if your audience was rather small.  That was the case with our first two performances, but we are hoping for a better crowd next week when word of mouth gets around.


Offline Sylphide

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Sarah Kane & 4.48 Psychosis
« Reply #1 on: February 24, 2010, 11:55:40 AM »
Hello ^^

I began, one year ago, a work about Sarah Kane & 4.48 Psychosis. From February to September 2009, I did the reading of the play a lot of time, I've search idea, I searched sources. Then, from September to now, I did research, I did an adaptation of the play, I've reflect and search about it.

Yesterday, I presented my version of the play as a student work, an anglophone play in a francophone school. And in two days, I'm giving back my "work", which is a view on my process into this project.

The play was good. But what is the best in it, is to have the original text in front of you and then seeing what is happening on stage, how the things has been but on the stage. How many character, how is the stage, who say which line and why...

I found it was a magical thing to work on this play of Sarah Kane. It opens a thousand doors, it can be done a thousand different way, even more, and it has no limits in anything. These are words, and the rest is in the hand of the ones who stage it.

Here I'm sending two version of the play I've found interesting while doing my word...

first, a Canadian representation of the play, which is really interesting : theater in actu

and then, another one, really interesting, with something like 15 actors... the 4.48 experience

I really loved my experience of working on Sarah Kane and on this play. It was, to me, a real contact with the universe of theater, more than reading or seeing a play, and more than doing drama courses. This play is... universal. It can be done without any references of time and place, it touches the spectators, it cannot let them without reaction.

I had a little scholar public. But it was magical.

From the beginning up to this point where I'm giving the sumerize and reflexion of my work, I really think that my vision of this play is different, more complex, that it got new senses. 

I was wondering how you were seeing it, what was your vision of the play, how you were seeing this strange text...

just to discuss a bit and discover other view over 4.48 psychosis.