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Radim Vizváry

19th and 20th March 2024.

Bitef Theatre

A Solo

concept, direction, performance: Radim Vizváry
sets and costumes: Hugo Čačko
light design: Karlos Šimek
production: Ilona Š Hájková

duration: 90’
premiere: Divadlo v Celetné, 2016

Ten milestones of pantomime served up by leading Czech mime Radim Vizváry. He presents a broad range styles in the genre from classic pantomime to butoh, and physical comedy to contemporary mime theater. The show is full of tradition, poetry, slapstick and lyrical extravagance. You will laugh and cry, all without a single word from Vizváry – since none are required by his art. His expression is purely physical, organically combining virtuoso movement with convincing acting. “Solo” is a breathtaking spectacle sure to entertain lovers of pantomime as well as those encountering it for the first time.

Radim Vizváry is a mime, performer, director, choreographer and educator, one of the most distinguished internationally acclaimed figures of contemporary mime theater in Europe. He is a graduate of the Music and Dance Academy of Performing Arts in Prague, where he received his Ph.D. His greatest mentor was Boris Hybner. His work systematically focuses on the modern form of pantomime, enriched with 21st century means of expression. His full-length solo performances have drawn rave reviews not only in Europe, but also the USA, Africa and Asia. He teaches pantomime both at Czech art academies and theater schools in Germany, Poland, Finland and Egypt. Since 2010, he has been the dramaturgist of the festival Artists in the Streets in Tábor, and since 2011 the artistic director of Prague Mime Fest and International Pantomime Festival in Polička. As an author, director and choreographer, Vizváry works with performers in non-verbal theater, as well as classic drama and opera ensembles. At the Prague National Theater he choreographed “From the House of the Dead” and “Billy Budd”, and directed the operas “Viva la Mamma” and “The Love for Three Oranges”. Vizváry has received numerous Czech and foreign awards, including a 2016 Thálie Award for his “Solo”, while in 2018 he received a medal by the ITI UNESCO for his outstanding contributions to the theater arts. Since 2021 he has been the artistic director of the Laterna Magika Ensemble.

Vizváry's “Solo” has become a silent legend, still receiving standing ovations after years of playing. It shouldn't be, since the performer takes constant care of it and continuously modifies the individual performances. “Solo” carries a cross-section of the genre from the days of Jean Gaspard Deburau's "Pierot" romantic pantomime, through Marcel Marceau's modern mime, clownery, and contemporary physical theatre and conceptual art… And no other production has yet emerged that has a similar ambition, to make pantomime non-violently accessible to audiences and to show its wide range.
© Opera Plus

Vizváry is undoubtedly the greatest personality of contemporary mime theatre, encompassing both its present and its classical legacy.

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