The Don Giovanni Syndrome
Graz, Austria, year 2021

‘Don Giovanni’ without Don Giovanni. There is no charming libertine named Giovanni in the staged concept and no Planet B. There is only the Don Giovanni Syndrome that consumes and annihilates the humanity in face of the rapidly approaching Armageddon. Mozart’s classic as a surreal and tragicomical thriller of modern human condition.

The set is designed as a dining room that stands for the societal mores of the community on stage. Its centrepiece is a table with an elaborated dinnerware set. With the death of Commendatore - the father figure who embodies the patriarchal, autocratic and feudal system - the monocentric perspective falls apart. The Don Giovanni syndrome takes over and de-evolution of the civilization starts. The hyperrealistic aesthetic of the set in Act I, transforms into an allegory of the claustrophobic atmosphere in Act II. The symbol of the societal mores is gradually consumed and burned by the insatiate desires that cannot be controlled by the protagonist. Commandatore (the Statue) returns in Act II as a planetbusting comet on its way to crash into the Earth and wipe out the humanity.

The concept was staged in the finals of the RING AWARD – the foremost international competition for stage direction and stage design in musical theatre. Top 3 teams were selected out of 126 concept proposals and staged in Schauspielhaus Graz.

Stage directions: Krystian Lada
Set design: Didzis Jaunzems
Costumes: Natalia Kitamikado
Light: Oskars Pauliņš
Video: Ēriks Božis, Viktors Keino
Photo: Susanne Hassler-Smith, Didzis Jaunzems