Pages 7

ANDRÁS FORGÁCH Nothing is new in the Hungarian theatre scene nowadays, although everything

is constantly changing, without our being able to perceive these fundamental

changes in their depth. This is a rather typical situation for Hungary, always a

country in transition. Theatre had a real renaissance in the 60s, and then, after

a short period of calm in the late 70s and early 80s, an eruption of a new,

more realistic, harsh, important, complex theatrical style: the theatre in general

became a focus, a prism of cultural (and political) life. In the 90s, this role

has diminished (with the new freedom of the press, and the ‘real-life’

parliament): but still it has a very strong infrastructure imbedded in the life

of the cities, especially in Budapest, where the state and the town secure the

financial survival of these structures (although we hear a lot of complaints

from the theatres, and the money is never enough). This is more or less the

German model, but with much less money. The middle-generation of directors

today is very wary because of this continuous thinning of the money-shield;

they speak of the danger to their own existence, not simply the survival of

the theatre itself. The spectre of commercialisation is also very present in the

anxieties of this middle-generation.