First Slovenian production
24 September 2010
Born in 1964 in Sicily, Spiro Scimone is, above all, an actor, playwright and co-founder of the theatre company Scimone-Sframeli which successfully tours all over Europe.
Scimone describes The Envelope (first produced in 2006) as a parable of modern ‘democracy’. It all starts quite innocently: A Man, who has received a mysterious envelope, visits the Chairman’s office. However, as it is common in powerful hierarchies, the Secretary does not let him pass. Moreover, the visitor’s face seems to him to be strangely suspicious, so he starts interrogating him. The Secretary uses all interrogation procedures and techniques known from literature and media ranging from apparent amiability to more or less open warnings and threats, with attempts of humiliation and dehumanization. All of them are grotesquely caricatured and driven to absurd.
The play establishes a distinct blend of Beckettian dialogues and Kafkaesque anxiety, induced by the uneasiness of pressure of an (unknown) authority. However, the bizarre characters and grotesque situations continually cause associations with everyday social reality. Thinking that receiving the envelope means something good, the recipient comes upon anything but that: he is faced with futile waiting among the four walls, weird scenes, confusion and above all a complicated discovery of the truth of which he will become the next victim.