Het Duel

Het Nationale Theater / Jeroen De Man
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Het Duel

Het Nationale Theater / Jeroen De Man

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Jacob Derwig and Joris Smit play the leading roles in Het duel (The duel), a stage production of Anton Chekhov's only short novel. Jeroen De Man (Ondertussen in Casablanca, Ondine) directs this performance in which the question of what constitutes 'good living' is being fought out by a great cast.

Grote Zaal
Duration: 2h

In a fashionable seaside resort, a community of Russian settlers leads a privileged life amid the local Muslim population. One of them is the wandering thirty-year-old Lajevski (Joris Smit), who fled here with his Nadezjda. She abandoned her husband in St. Petersburg for him. But the subtropical heat, the idleness and the biting comments of the other Russians impose a heavy burden on the relationship of the young lovers. Especially the rigid biologist Von Koren (Jacob Derwig) assesses Lajevski sharply: “In the interests of humanity and in their own interest such people must be destroyed.” Von Koren’s provocations lead to the ultimate 'survival of the fittest': a duel to the death.

The well-known Chekhov translator Charles B. Timmer wrote: “The duel actually belongs to Chekhov's great plays, but this time it is in the form of a novella.” For the first time, this theatre text is now being edited for the Dutch stage.

In de pers

Jacob Derwig in Scènes: 'Het duel is een komedie met een filosofische inslag, maar vooral érg grappig.'

Jeroen de Man in Volkskrant: ‘Meestal komt een personage op en verdwijnt dan weer in de coulissen, maar hier blijft iedereen meedoen. Dat typeert ook die kleine Russische gemeenschap, waarin men elkaar voortdurend zit te bespioneren. Dat zwarte vierkant is een beetje gemodelleerd naar het zwarte vierkant van Malevitsj, waarmee de abstracte kunst in Rusland begon. Dat abstracte zit ook in onze voorstelling. Dat vierkant kun je zien als een boksring, waarin zowel een feestje gevierd kan worden als een duel uitgevochten.’

Jeroen de Man in NRC: 'Ik verbaas me er altijd over dat toneel zo traditioneel is. Als personages geheimen voor elkaar hebben, dan verklappen ze die wel aan het publiek maar niet aan elkaar. In deze regie wil ik dat anders doen. Als de personages af gaan, blijven ze zichtbaar op de bühne. Ze horen dus precies wat de ander zegt. Dat maakt het spannend...'

Jeroen de Man

Jeroen De Man is known as an actor through his work at De Warme Winkel. In 2015 he made La Isla Bonita, with which he won the Debut Award at the ITS Festival. In 2017, he directed Ondertussen in Casablanca with Toneelgroep Oostpool and Het Nationale Theater, which was enthusiastically received by the press and the public. Jeroen De Man is fascinated by the emergence and disappearance of an illusion. Through his work he wants to bring to the surface contemporary paradoxes in which we imprison ourselves.

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