Where does art end and politics start? And who draws this fine line? Knut Hamsun was a Nobel prize awarded writer. Experts still consider him one of the founding fathers of modern literature, and highly influential for his innovative style. But Hamsun sided with the Germans in World War II and is therefore largely forgotten nowadays. Where did he slip? After 60 years of hatred, shame and distrust, there’s still no sign of reconciliation.
In The Writer a PhD-student is writing her thesis on Knut Hamsun. She asks him questions about the different phases of his life. In a subtle and seductive way she manages to extract the profoundly human ofrom this contentious historical figure. During their contact, reality, desire, comprehension and incomprehension alternate almost unnoticed. Through magnificent puppetry, music and humor we are able to go beyond our first impressions and get to know the man behind the books.
The Writer is a co-production of Ulrike Quade Company (Amsterdam), Jo Strømgren Kompani (Oslo) and The Nordland Visual Theatre (Stamsund). In 2009 the performance premiered at the Stamsund International Theatre Festival. 150 years after Knut Hamsun was born in Norway in 1859. The Writer toured in The Netherlands, Norway, Serbia, Slovenia, Turkey, Italy, Belgium, Macedonia, France, Germany and England. It was awarded multiple times: The Audience Award at Belgrade International Theatre Festival, BITEF 2009 and The Best Show Award, The Little Prince, at the 2010 Lutke International Puppet Theatre Festival in Ljubljana, Slovenia.