‘The Ball’ at Novas CUC


We really enjoyed the performance of ‘The Ball’ at Novas last night. Fortunately, Liverpool-based artist, Nicole Bartos, has written a fine review for us.

Notes on:
“The Ball” directed by Radu Nica –
“Radu Stanca” National Theatre from Sibiu, Romania – telling the history of a nation without words

The first Romanian theatre in the North-West of Britain, a challenge to Liverpool

Excellence and coherence were the main words that I had in mind when rethinking and reviewing the Romanian theatre performance I’ve just been privileged to see last evening 18th of November 2008, at the Contemporary Urban centre (CUC), Novas, Liverpool.

An incredible story-telling through contemporary dance and physical theatre and a journey that guided the eye and mind of the audience, through a sequential labyrinth of time and national Romanian history, during present, pre-second world war; Nazi occupation; soviet occupation and Stalinism; 60’s and it’s freedom; communism’s early years; the long dictatorship of Ceausescu regime; the 1989 Revolution and back to present.


Like many Romanians attending this performance, who lived under the Communist regime, through 70’s and 80’s Romania, I felt so touched to view the story without words of ‘The Ball’.
Directed by the young Radu Nica, from Sibiu this show in a post-modernist style, engaged us all on a journey of humanity and transformations through major historical realities; what it means a troubled history through chaos and destruction of human values and aspirations by politics, power and dictatorship, but also how great Romanian humour and theatre can be.

An amazing performance from 12 talented Romanian actors, a breath taking show; an evening to remember and a story to be told: Sibiu – Liverpool 2008, Romanian Connections.

Join us, on Thursday 20th of November 2008 at the CUC, 41-51 Greenland Street, Liverpool, for “Waiting for Godot” (Becket), directed by internationally renowned Silviu Purcãrete, and played by two of Romania’s most respected actors.

“Romanian Connections is financed through Promocult, the Romanian Government’s programme to promote Romanian culture in the European Union. With the generous support of The Embassy of Romania in the UK, The Romanian Cultural Institute in London and The Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Romanian Connections are about continuity. Liverpool is European Capital of Culture 2008 – the successor of Sibiu European Capital of Culture 2007. Sibiu is landlocked in the Transylvanian plains and Liverpool is famous for its maritime history, but the two cities are connected by their enduring cosmopolitan and multicultural traditions.

Local communities ensured that in Sibiu – as in Liverpool – culture flourished and attained very high standards; and the most important connection is that theatre, and the arts in general, are the closest one can get to a universal language. So the Romanian soul, pathos and humour, and an idea of what Romania is, can be conveyed to UK audiences directly in “the language of the heart”.
These are the Romanian Connections. Laugh with us, cry with us, in the tradition of “râsu-plânsu” (laughter-crying) that best characterises the Romanian soul. But, most of all, we hope you will become a friend.

For further details contact us: mail@profusion.org.uk. For more information, including images and future press releases, please go to www.romanianculturalcentre.org.uk/connections” (Excerpt from Romanian Connections, press release)

Organisers: Ramona Mitrica & Mike Phillips, ProFusion International Creative Consultancy.

Text by N. Bartos, 19/11/2008