Closed Study. “New Constructive Ethics”
Prešeren Theatre Kranj
Original title Закрытое исследование. New Constructive Ethics
Première 27. september 2022, Prešernovo gledališče Kranj
The first Slovenian performance
Running time 3 hours. One intermission.
Director Nina Rajić Kranjac
Translator Miha Javornik
Dramaturgs Tibor Hrs Pandur, Marinka Poštrak
Set designer Urša Vidic
Costume designer Marina Sremac
Composer Branko Rožman
Lighting designer Borut Bučinel
Language consultant Maja Cerar
Make-up stylists Matej Pajntar, Alja Sušnik
Monika Borovska, psychologist Darja Reichman
Rachel Donelan, biologist Tamara Avguštin as guest
Morgan Smith, neurobiologist Branko Jordan as guest
A man's voice Borut Veselko
A woman's voice Doroteja Nadrah as guest
Stage manager Ciril
"How to be and remain ethical?" is the question playwright Ivan Vyrypaev provocatively asks in his new play, Closed Study. "New Constructive Ethics", when considering the dilemmas of an individual’s freedoms, humanity, ecology, violence, inequality, meaning and, of course, god. Through structured interviews with three established intellectuals, it slowly reveals the worldviews and ethical principles of psychologist Monica Borowska, biologist Rachel Donelan and neurobiologist Morgan Smith and the discord between their professional positions and their intimate, personal lives. The interview becomes particularly problematic when the interviewees’ ethical norms regarding the evolutionary development of "highly developed individuals" interfere with the problem of solving violence and evil in society. There, all three interviewees find themselves on the slippery slope of eugenics and the relativity of the question of an individual’s freedom. The playwright also highlights the ethical problems of the closed study carried out by the international research organisation Global Construction, ordered by the Centre for International Biological Research at the New World Security company. Under the pretext of "saving the world", such entities collect, manipulate and quite obviously easily abuse data, to which the play is a testimony.
Nina Rajić Kranjac (1991) is, without a doubt, the youngest generation’s most successful and most acclaimed theatre director. She first started making a name for herself even before she got her MA from the UL AGRFT in 2017. She had won several student awards, but the most prominent was the Šeligo Award at the Week of Slovenian Drama for directing Simona Semenič’s 1981 – in the fifty-two years of the festival, this was the only time that its highest accolade went to a student production.. Her first direction in a professional theatre was Mile Korun’s The Counsellor at the Ljubljana City Theatre (2016), her most celebrated and awarded so far was Tadeusz Słobodzianek’s Our Class, which she directed at the Prešeren Theatre Kranj. Among her most successful directions in the last few years are Dane Zajc’s The Rocky Peak (Drama SNT Maribor), Wajdi Mouawad’s Scorched (SNT Drama Ljubljana), and of course, her devised theatre project Solo (co-produced by Mladinsko Theatre and Maska Institute), which won the Šeligo Award at the 52nd Week of Slovenian Drama and Benjamin Krnetić won the Best Actor Award. At the recent BITEF in Belgrade (Serbia), Solo won the Grand Prix for the best performance.
In the Slovenian theatre space, they are recognisable for thematically provocative, aesthetically refined and socially engaged performances. Their repertoire is focused on socially and politically engaged works of current contemporary playwrights (Slovenian and international), fresh interpretations of classic works, staging of innovative dramatic forms and themes, poetic theatrical language and a selection of the most prominent directorial and acting names. They are also the organizers of the Slovenian Drama Week, a festival where the best performances created in Slovenia and abroad, on the basis of Slovenian dramatic texts, are presented every year. They also pay special attention to quality performances for children and youth.