Suzana Koncut

Ivica Buljan

Robert Waltl

Set design:
Slaven Tolj

Mitja Vrhovnik Smrekar

Mini teater and Cankarjev dom, Ljubljana

Opening performance:
June 2000

Duration 45 min

About the performance

A remake of the performance from 2000 at the 20th anniversary of B.-M. Koltes’ death – the fate of the narrator is surrounded by what the author prefers most: loneliness, search of own identity, dreams of a better and prettier life, exclusion from the society, inability of expressing own demands and the desire. 

The French playwright and writer Bernard-Marie Koltès (Metz, 1948-1989) is considered to be a cult author of the French and European theatre of the eighties - mainly due to the topics dealt with in his drama work. He was fascinated by the trivial culture of the contemporary world: the film, the comics, the black chronicles in newspapers. He was a great fan of Bruce Lee, different martial art techniques, television soap operas and Bob Marley. He grew up with a very strict mother and her Christian education; his father, a military officer, was often absent. Koltes traveled a lot over countries of the Third World, mostly Central and South America and Africa, preferring to dwell in marginal environments, he often changed his sexual partners, after having experienced the disappointment of the modern way of life. The destructive way of living led him to in the end fall as one of the early victims of the grate 20th-century plague - AIDS.
Koltes wrote his first drama text Sorrows in 1970. Up to the year 1977, he wrote eight drama texts and a novel, none of which were published however. The only critical and public recognition he received happened in 1983 for the staging of the Fight of the Nigger with the Dogs, directed by Patrice Chereau. Performances of Coltes' works on Slovene stages so far have been: Western Moor, Roberto Zucco, In the Solitude of Cotton Fields, The Day of Murders in the Story of Hamlet.
The drama text Night at the Edge of the Forests in the form of a monologue in one scene was written in 1977 and was put on stage within the Avignon Off Festival in the same year. The first performance of this text in Slovenian was accompanied by an edition of three Koltes' texts in the book Koltes (In the Solitude of Cotton Fields, Night at the Edge of the Forests, and Tabataba); all three translated by Suzana Koncut.

According to Buljan, the staging of Koltes is extremely interesting. The author sets a variety of questions, placing us upon the mysterious crossroads without solving them, which is quit fortunate: if the text provided us with answers, theatre would no longer be necessary.

The nature of the Night Just Before the Forest (La nuit juste avant les forêts) is a collage of non-psychological acting, non-acting and movement. It is conceived as a one-man show (a monologue) striving for the effect of a modern spectacle, making use of minimalist theatrical expression. Primarily, however, what we witness is one of the most challenging monologues in world literature.

On a rainy night, a stranger appears from the dark searching for shelter – a poor and exhausted man. The actor is forced to create the presence of Another, who is not willing to respond.


The performance was created within the international European project »Puppet Nomad Academy 1«, financially supported by the European Comission, programme Culture (2007-2013). This publication [communication] reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.