This is a threat that has been hovering for a few days. After the cancellation of his rehearsals at the Comédie de Genève on June 2, Polish director Krystian Lupa and his play LesÉmigrants, one of the most important of the Avignon Festival, will finally be deprived of performances. Tiago Rodrigues announced the cancellation of the play on Wednesday.
"We regret to announce that the production conditions (constraints and calendar, financial and logistical impasses) do not allow the presentation of this project this summer in Avignon," the festival announced in a statement. Pithy explanations, which come on top of the rumors that already hovered behind the scenes of the piece, until then being assembled in Switzerland. Differences in "philosophy" and a lack of respect for "the values" of the Comédie de Genève had notably pushed the institution to cancel the rehearsals and performances of the Emigrants.
'Contradictory and chaotic' injunctions
The real cause of this cancellation would be to be found in the behavior of the Polish playwright, who would have "exhausted" part of the technical team by subjecting it to "contradictory and chaotic injunctions", according to Libération. According to the daily, Krystian Lupa would have screamed in front of witnesses on his teams and in particular his long-time collaborator and translator, Agnieszka Zgieb.
The director had defended himself from any abusive behavior in an open letter also published by Liberation. "I shouldn't have reacted that way and I was very affected by it. The next day, Agnieszka Zgieb and I talked about the incident again, and our relationship resumed, calmed down. I would like to take this opportunity to deny that insulting words would have been pronounced against him, a contrary interpretation would be a distortion of my words, "he writes about the screams on his translator. "For these two incidents, I would like to formally apologize ... During the first dress rehearsal, punctuated by many interruptions and stopped by the technical team, there was no conflict on my part, but only a persevering request to obtain the correct execution of the composition of light, sound and video (I still do) in order to avoid technical errors for the future. This, as it turns out, was considered by the technical team as a violation of the work standards to which they were accustomed," the playwright continues.
The co-producers hope that the show will still be able to see the light of day, especially at the Odéon-Théâtre de l'Europe, where it is scheduled for January 2024.