I don’ t know exactly why, but when it comes to Gianina Cărbunariu’s theater staged stories they have to be in English. Maybe because I feel the need to tell my international friends about them and beside the internet our main tool of communication is English. Vorbiți tăcere? / Sprechen Sie Schweigen? (Do you speak silence? as it is written on the schedule of FITS)
I felt that this story was directly addressed to me – the young Romanian dreamer that sought fulfilment into other worlds, other countries, with new hopes and new opportunities. This is not a show about being patriotic, to my mind, it is a show about being realistic on what are these true opportunities of starting over as a foreigner in a new country.
This is not a show about discrimination, to my mind, it is a show about human exploitation. If you are lazy, you won’t have an easy time anywhere. If you are hard-working, you will have a hard time making it through, because you will end up working more and getting paid less. And no one cares about this injustice. You can make a statement, go on a strike, but to horrible employers, the employees are just numbers on a chart and which can be replaced at any time, especially if they are not profitable for the company.
Are you willing to put yourself into a nanny’s shoes or a worker on a construction set? To feel the never-ending humiliation and still having to work harder and harder in order to cover your expenses and send money to your family back to your home country. Still, this is not a show about victims, it is a show about dignity and the power of endurance to an extreme. The extreme is not working over schedule (that is a common fact, no surprise to anyone), it is not getting paid by the company you were hired to work for. You are forced to take desperate measures as the ground falls apart from your feet and you reach a dead end.
So, these are after show thoughts. The stories that were brought to life by the brilliant artistic team were really disturbing and cannot cease to haunt me as reality strikes with an unexpected hurting weapon. This is more than theatre. It is not just art, not just applause, not just work, it is personal and uncomfortable. It is an issue that involves all of those who care… Do you care? Can you change something in the way you act and react in order to cut down the suffering of hard-working people?