The Tóts are back on stage

The Tóts are back on stage

Many of the audience of the Tamási Áron Theatre were interested in the company’s performances of previous years, which have not been seen by everyone, so the theatre management has planned the renewal of some of these productions. The first play to be staged is István Örkény’s The Tót Family, which premiered in November 2021 under the direction of László Bocsárdi. The renewal will cast as the Narrator Árpád Barabás, astistic director at the Tomcsa Sándor Theatre in Odorheiu Secuiesc. The production will be on show on 30th November and 1st December at 7 pm, with tickets available at the Box Office in Sfântu Gheorghe and on the website.

A bizarre theme, a few strange characters and a long series of grotesque situations that border on the absurd, making you laugh out loud, but at the same time you feel that you are watching the tragedy of the Second World War. Perhaps this is how to sum up in a single sentence The Tót Family, first published as a short novel in 1966, and adapted into a drama by István Örkény a year later. Already in 1970, its Paris production won the Grand Prix of Black Humour.

The work is really a surreal vision of vulnerability. Its starting point is fear, which slowly turns into madness. The only son of the Tót family is fighting on the Russian front, and he persuades his superior, suffering from nervous exhaustion, to rest from the war at his parents’ home in Mátraszentanna. The Major arrives in the mountain village, and the Tót family do their best to please him in the hope that he will take their child under his wing on the battlefield. In this innocent family story, the author sketches all the horrors of the twentieth century, but there is compassion and love as well behind the sharp criticism, and all the good intentions of the little man behind the missteps.

According to director László Bocsárdi, it was both a great opportunity and a great challenge for the company to be able to present this extremely important text by István Örkény in a way worthy of its rank in Sfântu Gheorghe.

The production does not process the story of the Tóts in a conventional form: the evoked soul of the author expands the concept of time, so that in addition to the dramatic text, the more important moments of the short novel also appear in the production. The audience can see László Mátray, Bence Kónya-Ütő, Annamária D. Albu, Zsuzsanna Vass, Gábor Erdei and Levente Nemes in the main roles.