Sarah Kane’s ‘Crave’ in Athens

Director Lefteris Vogiatzis is staging yet another play by Sarah Kane at his Odou Kykladon Theater in Kypseli. After the much-discussed production of Kane’s «Cleansed» two years ago, Vogiatzis is now producing «Crave,» the penultimate of the few plays that the British playwright wrote during her short life. Born in Essex in 1971, Kane demonstrated an interest in drama at an early age, and as a teenager started collaborating with local theater troupes. After graduating in drama from Bristol University, she attended Birmingham University, earning an MA in playwriting. Her first substantial work, «Sick,» dealing with issues such as rape and eating disorders, was performed in front of a crowd in a pub in Edinburgh. Other controversial works followed, with critics initially showing their dismay. Upset by the negative reviews, Kane nevertheless went on writing – fighting depression all along. Written under the pseudonym of Marie Kelvedon, «Crave» is considered Kane’s most mature work and the recipient of rave reviews; it was compared to T.S. Eliot’s «The Waste Land.» Following the completion of «4.48 Psychosis» in January 1999, Kane committed suicide. She was 28. The four characters in «Crave» are played by Lefteris Vogiatzis, Aglaia Pappa, Angeliki Papathemeli and Vassilis Boulougouris. The characters are only mentioned by their initials and no further information is provided about their identity. A, standing for Author or Abuser, could be the author, the creator or the perpetrator, but also the rapist and the tyrant. M is the Mother, B is the Boy or Brother and C (Child) is the girl, the daughter and maybe even the sister in relation to the other characters. The same fate or origins that they share is defined by Mother: «If you commit suicide, you will be forced to return and go through it all. Again.» Broken story Poet Jenny Mastoraki who translated the play, said that it resembled a monologue broken into four voices. The text is locked into the mechanism of poems; it screams, it is sarcastic and painful and uses borrowed words. «It tells the worst of four stories. The stories rub against each other and so do the voices. Sometimes it is possible to hear, behind these voices, just one broken story, one voice only: that of Sarah Kane, who talks about a lonely love. At the same time, it is as if she is settling scores with the universe. The distance between Kane’s ‘Crave,’ her play ‘Cleansed’ and the end was very short.» At the Odou Kykladon Theater, the play is directed by Lefteris Vogiatzis, with sets and costumes designed by Mayou Trikerioti. The music is by Dimitris Kamarotos and the lights by Lefteris Pavlopoulos. Odou Kykladon Theater, 11 Kefallinias & Kykladon, Kypseli, tel 210.821.7877.

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