Venus in Fur, the common performance of the Budapest English Theatre and the Prague Shakespeare Company was the best play that could have be seen in recent times. Despite the fact that the show was in English, there was a surprisingly huge number of Hungarians in the audience. It seems that there is an increasing demand for the English-language theatre, as more and more people prefer the original text instead of the translation.
An English-language theatre is good because due to the linguistic and cultural differences, there is also some distortion in translation.
There used to be performances in the original language in the past as well, but they were immature in many ways, and ceased to exist. But the increasing presence of foreign people and the interest demanded that something should be done in this field. That is when the Australian Virginia Proud comes into the picture with the Budapest Secret Theatre, and Oliver Micevski with the Rooftop Theatre.
It was called ”Secret Theatre” because our group was very small, nobody knew us. Then it started to become more serious; we performed at Spinoza, Müszi, and at Atrium Film Theatre. We realized that it would be useful to have a name which makes it clear what we do. That is how we became the Budapest English Theatre – said Virginia, who is the director and the actress of the company as well.
She also agrees that the Hungarian audience has an increasing interest towards plays in the original language. ”If we only targeted the foreign people living here, we would restrict ourselves very much, so we also try to communicate the possibility towards Hungarians who are good at English”- she said.
This also affects the play performed. The company tries to give performances that are understandable and enjoyable for every culture. For example, Pretex shows the midlife crisis and the relationships of a 30-year-old woman.
In addition to the company’s own products, they also bring international plays to Budapest. The most recent was ”Venus in Fur” by the Prague Shakespeare Company. Before that, ”Metamorphosis” by J.B. Alexander was put on stage.
Fortunately, there are future plans, but the BET has to face the problem of finding the ideal place and the finances, as every show has to sponsor itself. People can help them by buying tickets. You can get information about the performances on the company’s website and Facebook page, and you should also subscribe to their newsletters.
based on article of welovebudapest.com
translated by Vivien Pásztai