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A joint performance by Performance Space 122, PanoDrama and Pont Műhely
Mars Untitled

 National Theatre, Gobbi Hilda Stage, 2008. November 29. 15:00
(In English and Hungarian with Hungarian subtitles!)

Natalie Thomas, Tanya Selvaratnam, László Keszég, Caleb Hammond, April Sweeney, Dorka Gryllus, Balázs Vajna

Writer: Jay Scheib
Set Design: Peter Ksander
Light Designer: Miranda Hardy
Costume Designer: Oana Botez-Ban
Sound: Catherine McCurry
Video: Balázs Vajna, Miklós Buk
Hungarian Producer: Anna Merényi
Adapted and directed by: Jay Scheib


From Video: Waris Ahluwalia, Dr. Henrik Hargitai, Kofi Hope-Gund, Dr. Robert Zubrin
Assistant Director: Laine Rettmer
Assistant Set Designer: Andreea Mincic
Assistant Light Designer: Adam Saucy
Assistant Costume Designer: Abby Walton
Research: Hui Ying Wen
Extra Set Elements: Adela Kuehn

fotó: Kati Strahl & Justin Bernhaut

Science versus fiction: this is the topic of this American-Hungarian co-production. The basis of the play is Philip K. Dick’s novel Time-Jump on Mars (set on an imaginary Mars), which was written in 1964, and more than thirty hours worth of interviews with physicists, researcher students and professors at MIT, along with their Hungarian counterparts. The production has live contact with MIT’s Mars Research Group in Zarah Kahn and Phillip Cunio. Mars Untitled is about something that has people excited all over the world. It is a mix of strict science and science fiction that inspires the performance. One of the most important characteristics of Homo sapiens is its curiosity which never dies down. From this curiosity stems the need for mapping out Mars, and is the basis of this Hungarian-American production, with artists from four other countries as well.

In the last five years Jay Scheib, this young American director, has concentrated on trans-disciplinary genres. With the mediation of dramaturg Anna Merényi he has had two live film-theatre productions in Hungary with Pont Műhely and Krétakör Theatre.

Mars Untitled is co-production that blurs the lines between Hungarian and American theatre artists and institutions in geography and genre. Jay Scheib and Anna Merényi, along with the Point Műhely had their first performance in the US after two productions in Budapest. In its original location, the prestigious Performance Space 122 in New York, Mars Untitled was played for three weeks.

In Jay Scheib’s theatre of the genesis of arts his European experiences as well as his American roots have important parts to play. The young director is a constant guest instructor at two European universities of theatre (the legendary Mozarteum in Salzburg and the Norvegian Fredrikstadi, Theatrical Colleges with names like Robert Wilson and Anna Viebrock), while also being associate professor at MIT. He directs in European theatres every year, in places like the Volksbühnen in Berlin, the Staatstheater in Saarbrücken, but he is a returning guest in Belgrade and Bologna as well as New York and Boston.

Compared to the Hungarian theatrical tradition his work still seems revolutionary. His use of theatrical language and spectacle, his singular sensitivity to space combined with the Hungarian absurdist tradition always leads to unique and exciting solutions. The audience and the critics praise his work.

“Mars Untitled is an exceptional experience. Even after coming out of the theatre, the feeling of being raised, the feeling of being elevated that the performance induced in me stayed with me for a long time. Sometimes multimedia productions like these are too crowded to work properly, but this one does work. The first part of a trilogy, the second one being Simulated Cities to follow. I’ll certainly watch the other two as well.” Richard Hinojosa, nytheatre.com

Date of the Performance: 2008. November 29. 15:00
Venue: National Theatre, Gobbi Hilda Stage (Budapest, IX. Bajor Gizi park 1.)

For tickets: [+36 (1) 476 6868]; [+36 (1) 373 0963]; [+36 (1) 373 0964]; [+36 (1) 373 0995]; [+36 (1) 373 0996]