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Péter Závada: Reflex (Meltdown)


27 November 20.00

Jurányi Art Incubator House


90’ without intermission

in Hungarian with English subtitles


Photo: Péter Jankovics

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Miklós Béres

Gábor Fábián

Károly Hajduk

Péter Jankovics

Pál Kárpáti

Dániel Király, student

Lőte Koblicska

Niké Kurta, student

Kata Pető

Nóra Rainer-Micsinyei

Zoltán Szabó


Writer: Péter Závada

Set and costume design: Júlia Balázs

Sound design: Gábor Keresztes

Choraographer: Máté Hegymegi

Dramaturg: Péter Závada

Assistant to the dramaturg: Tamás Turai

Assistant to the director: Andrea Pass

Production manager: Ildikó Ságodi

Directed by: Dániel Kovács D., student


Supported by EACEA Programme of Cultur

Partners: Divádelná Nitra, National Opera of Czech Republic, Staatsschauspiel Dresden

Teatr Nowy, dramAcum, SkRAT Theatre


Special thanks: Piroska É. Kiss, Luca Szabados és Bori Rieger



The theatre festival of Nitra (Divadlená Nitra) invited six companies to produce a performance, each as a part of the project Parallel Lives – the 20th century through the eyes of the secret police. Dániel D. Kovács, a fourth year student of Gábor Székely and Viktor Bodó working with Szputnyik has asked Pál Závada to write a play for them. (…) In the summer of 1956 a young psychologist is taken to a lunatic asylum. On the one hand, the doctors suspect paranoid schizophrenia. He, on the other hand suspects that his former colleagues at the State Defense Authority want to remove him from public life. Can the state possess enough power to decide what is normal thereby defining reality? Does an objective reading of an observation exist? The events in the lunatic asylum shed light on the various aspects of the operation of the system: sacked agents, newly found reports, repetition, newer and newer aspects. And, of course, the ever repeated refurbishment of the building, which spans several eras: old secrets are found behind the demolished old wall while new ones are walled up.


Critic Tamás Jászay wrote on revizoronline.hu about the performance in Nyitra:


“(…) the impertinently young authors, who were all born in the years of the political changes and thus do not have, cannot possibly have any direct experiences about the operation of the system, examined through their own experiences, thoughts and doubts what can be perceived from the recent past, which has artificially been kept in obscurity. They also studied that how all that can be turned into theatre. In their point of view, the past seems to be full of absurd and embarrassing scenes and you do not know whether to laugh at them or cry. The frightened individuals who look like doctors walk about with gloomy faces and flashing eyes because they don’t know in which moment they will be taken away by the black car. The director compresses his ideas about the age into memorable images in the performance: for example when one female doctor is suddenly unable to put on her gown which is tighter than usual, the piece of clothing turns into a strait jacket, or when an unintentional gesture turns into “spontaneous” ovation.” (http://www.revizoronline.com.hu/cikk/4370/zavada-peter-reflex-szputnyik-hajozasi-tarsasag-nyitrai-nemzetkozi-szinhazi-fesztival-2013/)




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