Tajovský’s single act piece Sin may not be as widely known as his Statky-zmätky or The Women’s Law. Dramaturgically, however, Sin is a brilliantly constructed comedy in both terms: as a play, it is a comedy with evocative black humour moments, and a play that ends well. Its power stems from its commanding dramatic framework. Eva’s husband returns home, having spent years in America. He is unaware that, meanwhile, Eva got involved with a juvenile irresponsible servant Jano. A child has been born out of the union. Eva is desperate and does not know how her husband will respond to the situation. The path to the non-sentimental happy end leads through uneasy conversations and questioning of one’s mind. The core dramaturgical setting of Her Stepdaughter is quite similar. The young Jenůfa is expecting a child with the irresponsible Števo. Nonetheless, he is not prepared to marry her. Laco would marry her, though he finds the idea of raising a child of another man whom he resents, unbearable. Hence, an unwanted child is a problem here as well. Unlike Tajovský, Preissová ends the story tragically. The joint staging of the two classics offers ample intriguing confrontations. It is a confrontation of two versions of a fundamental issue: one comic and another one tragic, a confrontation of two siblings in terms of national drama, of two approaches to life, two national mentalities. Sin as well as Her Stepdaughter were among the first premières in the history of the Slovak National Theatre. Bringing them together and their new staging is yet another contribution by the SND Drama Company to the celebrations of the SND centenary.
Running time: 2 hrs 10 minutes, no interval
Première September 12, 2020
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