Oficial Media: I understood from what you were saying about Richard that, in your perspective, he is not a bad person, he just uses the attack as a form of defending himself. Am I right?
Di Trevis: He is a bad person, but he was not pure evil. Attacking is the only way he feels possible. In the end, there are some people who feel that the only way to defend themselves is to kill. Also, every time I suggested doing Richard III, everyone always used to say to me „Ah, but in the second scene in Richard III, he seduces a woman whose father-in-law and husband he has killed in battle. How can you do Richard III, because no one would believe that.” But I happen to know, because I have a friend and I can say that a woman in deep grief is very, very vulnerable to erotic attention. And I also know because I have experienced it myself how alarming a sexual attraction is to somebody who you don’t find very attractive. It is very complex.
OM: Do you have something from your work experience with Richard and the play that moved you in such a deeply manner? What demons came by working at the play?
DT: No, demons don’t come while I am working, because I would have demons if i didn’t work. I enact, I get people to enact my dramas, every day. That’s my job.
OM: Then, can you tell us a moment of absolute joy while working with the theatre in Târgoviște?
DT: I would say, I mean, I love working with all my actors and I have very good relationships with all the young women I work with and I usually have a very, very good relationship with my whole company. This company hasn’t been as happy as my companies usually are. I think that might be to do with the themes in the play which are difficult and dark and so on. But really, the greatest joy comes from the collaboration with the actor playing in the long and difficult role. You know, I did the play for the actor. When I met Liviu I thought he was potentially a very great Richard III. I lived with another actor a long time who I know could make a wonderful Richard III, but he decided to make movies in Hollywood instead. But I found with Liviu I could really do Richard III and that is a relationship of such intimacy. It is not sexual, it is in the mind. And that relationship is wonderful with an actor. And then not only just the actor get to play the role but you have a wonderful creative conversation for a long time and the relationship between a director and somebody acting is very, very complex, isn’t it? It’s almost like love, but you could say an impersonal love if you could imagine such thing. That’s what it is. It’s exactly like the love between an analyst and a patient. It’s impersonal.
OM: So did you do the play for Liviu?
Di Trevis: I obviously loved the other actors, too. And he can’t do it without the other actors, he can’t do it on its own. But anyway, yeah, he’s a very great actor and he will be a very great Romanian actor if the romanians allow him to be. He is really in a wonderful class of actors. You asked me if there’s one really joyful moment I got from it, so this is a guessing game. I’m not going to tell you. There’s one moment in Richard III when Liviu simply look at somebody for about a second more than you would normally look at somebody. And it is a moment of such brilliance that every time I see it I go „Isn’t he a wonderful actor?” And also in Richard III, I’ve inserted the scene which is not from Shakespeare, but it’s from a writer later than Shakespeare, because I’m very fascinated by this erotic-sexual relationship that a man like that has. So there’s a scene where he has sex with Anne and I only did two exercices with them. I did one exercise which is about leaning against each other and one falling down and then the other falling down as if they’re totally drunk. I did that exercise, no speech. And then I did another exercise where he picked her up, just picked her up bodily and then put her down again. That’s all I did and then we did the scene. Oh, and I did rolling. It’s two people and they don’t know each other at all and you think how can i get this scene and we did rolling, like two children and the thing is I never spoke about sex at all. And also I’m not interested in seing sex on stage.
OM: If you have a state of euphoria and one of complete sadness, do you combine them in a balanced way?
DT: No, they are not in harmony. I think anybody who’s really creative is not very balanced.
OM: You haven’t told us exactly about a moment of sadness and one of pure joy, so that makes me believe you live in a state of balance.
DT: There’s a lovely japanese word which is „not no and not yes”. In fact, a great friend of mine always used to say to me in order to live one mustn’t be too desperate or too extatic, one ought to just try and just lock into sanity and kick it. And that took me quite a long time, because when I was an actress I was incredibly passionate and I had the gift of tears and I just get very, very sad and very depressed and very, very in despair and all that kind of things. But there’s only so much you can do in life, so instead of actually being on the stage and doing it, I then got to hold an intelectual image of it by being a director and that’s what gave me balance.
Read also the PART I
Cristi Iordache & Oana Grigore
Translate: Roxana Iordache