Twelfth Night, or What You Will

Teatrul Național ”Lucian Blaga” din Cluj-Napoca

28 March & 07 April 2024

The “Lucian Blaga” National Theatre in Cluj-Napoca is happy to announce a new, much-anticipated addition to its repertoire: 'Twelfth Night, or What You Will', after William Shakespeare, directed by the acclaimed young director Botond Nagy. The performance premiered to a packed house on 9 March 2024. 

In Botond Nagy’s vision, mysterious Illyria becomes a contemporary space that embodies both modern ailments and perennial dilemmas, filtered through the humour of the multiple doublings, disguises, and plot twists. The director explores the ambiguities of Shakespeare’s text from a contemporary perspective, at once unique and familiar, creating – along with scenographer Andreea Săndulescu and music composer Claudiu Urse – a distinctive visual and auditory universe fusing humour, irony, eccentricity, and a vague sense of melancholy.

The tribulations of the protagonists are explored through multiple lenses, playing upon the themes of uprootedness, sexual repression, and an unstable sense of self.

Highly poetical, the striking imagery of the show underlines the irony of love missing its object. The quest for love and the meaning of love are central to Botond Nagy’s reimagining of the Twelfth Night. Talking about the show, the director ponders:

“Can love be our everything? Can love be a miracle nowadays? (…) I hope this performance stirs within us that fragile feeling of a forgotten melancholy, an invigorating melancholy, that makes us want to fall in love with life again and again, with its good and its bad. I hope that it brings us back to those casual days when we would remember a long-forgotten dream in which someone, somewhere, in a dusty corner of our personal Illyria, the Illyria of our soul, caressed us as if for the first time, as if for the last time.”

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Photo: (c) Nicu Cherciu

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