28 September 2019

SIX YEARS LATER - STEFAN MAVRODIEV and MARIN YANEV join forces again on the stage of the National Theatre

SIX YEARS LATER - STEFAN MAVRODIEV and MARIN YANEV join forces again on the stage of the National Theatre

Ivaylo Hristov is directing the first premiere on the Main stage for this season- “NICE FISH”

Six years after the acclaimed performance “Old Clown Wanted” (with the memorable Iliya Dobrev), STEFAN MAVRODIEV and MARIN YANEV join forces again on the stage of the National Theatre. The catalyst for this is IVAYLO HRISTOV, who presented the first premiere on the Main stage for this season- “NICE FISH” by Mark Rylance and Louis Jenkins.


There are two dates for the premiere: the 29th of September and the 2nd of October at 19:00h, and the rest of the cast includes STOYAN ALEXIEV, ELENA TELBIS and PLAMEN DIMOV.

On a frozen lake somewhere in Minnesota, two old friends, Eric and Ron, are fishing. While baiting the hook, they ponder over the world, over the man, over the meaning of life, and unexpectedly draw sad and curious, strange and paradoxical maxims and conclusions. After being joined by the ardent fisherman Wayne and his granddaughter Flo, the company settled on the icy wilderness, was suddenly visited by an inspector from the Environmental Protection Agency. Will his inquiries change something or someone?



Before putting a play on stage, every director asks himself the question: "Why do I want to direct this play?" If he likes it, of course, otherwise the play immediately goes into the trash bin. Well, after the first reading, I could not answer this question! I like the play, I want to present it on stage, but I cannot figure out why! There is no plot, the conflict is evasive, the characters are not changing through the storyline, they discuss abstract matters and they even interact very rarelyIn other words, the most important components of drama are missing! What should I do? This is not a play but something resembling a play! An Antiplay! Being in such a schizophrenic state of mind, I decided to reread the text and determine what exactly I liked at first?! Revisiting the play, I felt the sense of humour and something very important- its mosaic structure! In the separate monologues, the characters depicted different episodes of their lives- some with a moral, some entertaining, some embarrassing, some inspiring…

In this descriptive manner, the mosaics of their life, of our life, impalpably assemble. The life we live, whether we like it or not, because this is what we possess. Day after day, we drag along the allays of life and believe that just around the corner we will greet THE DREAM, maybe round the next corner HAPPINESS will pat us on the back, two more blocks down the road we will catch the NICE FISH and thus leaning on HOPE, one day we walk out of life as if we leave a movie theatre!

As you might imagine, after the second round of reading, things began to shape up in my head. I hope! Then, together with the actors (I admire their talent) we read the play umpteen times and after long rehearsals we came up with the performance you will be watching today. Welcome to the story of the NICE FISH!

P.S. If you haven’t understood what the performance is about, do not worry, it is important to grasp the moral of the story! To wit:When a lottery clerk brings you a million dollar check at home, tell him: No, thank you, I don’t need it, please go home! ”… You would not do it, wouldn’t you!?





SIR MARK RYLANCE is considered the best theatre actor of his generation and among the best Shakespearean actors of our time. He has played virtually every role in Shakespeare’s playsfrom Hamlet and Romeo, through Richard III and Iago to Olivia in “Twelfth Night” and Cleopatra in “Antony and Cleopatra”. Al Pacino has said:Mark Rylance speaks Shakespeare as if it was written for him the night before”.

Mark Rylance has staged almost all of Shakespeare's plays, not only when he was the artistic director of Shakespeare's Globe Theater in London (1995-2005), but also as a successful director both in Europe and in America. The awards and honors for his acting work are countless.

If you are interested to know who hides behind the good giant in the Steven Spielberg’s movie, this is Mark Rylance. If you are curious about who Rudolf Abel is in “The Bridge of Spies”- it is Mark Rylance again. The mystery behind his magnetic presence both onscreen and onstage could be kept in his face and eyes. Probably the ironic sadness of his expression harbors so many questions and possibilities.

One of these opportunities is to portray and present, in collaboration with the writer and poet Louis Jenkins, part of his life spent in the cold Minnesota, in the play “Nice Fish”. The success of this absurdly sad-and-funny comedy after its premiere in New York in 2016 was reiterated in London. Mark Rylance plays Ron in both performances, the character who believes “there exists only the void you love and shelter in your soul- where once your heart was”.

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