It should be the beginning of a successful, bourgeois existence. Returning from a long honeymoon, Jörgen Tesman and Hedda Gabler move into their dream house, for which Tesman recklessly put himself in debt on the assumption that he would very soon be appointed professor, with the aim of offering his demanding wife a suitable life. Aunt Juju has taken care of the decoration while they have been away and Judge Brack, the family’s creditor, has financed it. But freedom-loving Hedda was not designed for this marriage and Tesman was not made for the ‘wild’ life. What for one of them is heaven on earth is, for the other, pure hell. Then a man from the past reappears: Lövborg, Hedda’s former lover. With the support of Mrs Elvsted he has conquered his addiction, written a groundbreaking book and is now being touted as a possible candidate for the professorship. Ghosts of the past spark a maelstrom of obsessions, desires and projections, in which each of the characters in this complex web of dependencies seeks to defend their life’s plan from one another. With his drama, Ibsen submits the bourgeois system to a crash test. Is our civilisation able to withstand the destructive forces provoked by the catch-22 of striving for security and being seduced by freedom? Is it only possible to gain freedom if you are in a secure financial position? Does enlightenment mean recognising ourselves as culturally constructed subjects, even today? Is the idea of freedom an illusion, a lie? And does the state of our society still give the superfluous, the beautiful and the useless a chance?
Premiered at Thalia Theater on 23rd November 2013