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The lecture “First Person Theatre, from Monodrama to the Performance of Selfhood” by Octavian Saiu and a theatrical performance by Nicu Nitai, November 26, 2017, at 17:00, RCI Tel Aviv


The Romanian Cultural Institute in Tel Aviv, in collaboration with the Karov Theatre, is honored to invite you on Sunday, November 26th, 2017, at 17:00, at the institute, for an intriguing and fascinating lecture entitled “First Person Theatre, from Monodrama to the Performance of Selfhood” delivered by acclaimed theatre critic Octavian Saiu. The lecture will be followed by a theatrical performance of a scene from the show “The Fall”, in the interpretation of Nicu Nitai, as well as the book launch of the volume ”Teatrul la persoana I”/First Person Theatre, published by Nemira in 2017.

The event will take place Sunday, November 26, at 17:00 at RCI Tel Aviv (8 Shaul Hamelech Blvd., Beit Amot Mishpat, 6th floor).


The lecture “First Person Theatre, from Monodrama to the Performance of Selfhood”

Performance from the show ”The Fall” adaptation after Albert Camus, interpreted by Nicu Nitai, actor, director and founder of the Karov Theatre in Tel Aviv

The book launch of the volume ”Teatrul la persoana I”/First Person Theatre(Nemira, 2017) - participants: Octavian Saiu, author, university professor and theatre critic, and Nicu Nitai

Free entrance, the number of seats is limited.

Lecture abstract: The debate about the meaning of authorship in performing arts is now more intense than ever, as the new notion of “group theatre” keeps challenging the traditional understanding of the role of the director. Yet, there are theatre artists all over the world, who prefer to create solo performances around themselves, about themselves, and even for themselves. They suggest that theatre can transcend its definition as a collective adventure, if it offers the exclusive vision of a single artist, an actor-director-playwright who becomes his or her own character.

This presentation will discuss a genre that can be termed “first person theatre”, a variety of performance in which the “I” of the character is also the “I” of the author. Drawing on critical theory and using examples from some of the most innovative theatrical experiments recently presented at international festivals, it will address the concepts of authorship, selfhood and subjectivity on the contemporary stage.

Octavian Saiu is a scholar and professional theatre critic. He has taught theatre and dramatic literature as Associate Professor at the National University of Theatre and Film (NUTF) in Bucharest and as Guest Lecturer at the University of Otago in New Zealand. He was Visiting Fellow at the University of London, School of Advanced Study, and is currently Visiting Professor at universities in Tokyo, Hong Kong and Lisbon. He holds a PhD in Theatre Studies from NUTF, with a thesis about theatrical space, and another one in Comparative Literature from the University of Otago, with a thesis about Samuel Beckett and Eugène Ionesco. He completed a PostDoc in Literary Studies and has been awarded his Habilitation in Theatre and Performing Arts. He has been actively involved in several worldwide theatre events and academic conferences in North America, Australasia and Europe, including Edinburgh International Festival, where he was Chair of the Samuel Beckett Conference in 2013, and the Theatre Olympics in Wrocław – European Capital of Culture 2016. Since 2004 he has been Chair of the Conferences of Sibiu International Theatre Festival.

He is Adjunct Secretary General of the International Association of Theatre Critics (IATC) and President of the Romanian Section – Theatre Studies of IATC. He has published articles in several international journals, as well as nine books on theatre. He received the Critics’ Award in 2010 and the Award of the Union of Theatre Artists (UNITER) in 2013. His most recent book publication in English is Hamlet and the Madness of the World (2016).