Duska Radosavljevic

Duska Radosavljevic
regional managing editor - United Kingdom

Duška Radosavljević is a writer, dramaturg and academic. She is the author of the award-winning Theatre-Making: Interplay Between Text and Performance in the 21st Century (2013) and editor of The Contemporary Ensemble (2013) and Theatre Criticism: Changing Landscapes (2016). She teaches at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama.

“Five Easy Pieces”: Milo Rau’s Extraordinary Work About Child Murderer

  It’s not often that a children’s theatre features a piece about a pedophile and child murderer in its repertoire. But on rare occasions when vision, intelligence, and courage align, this kind of programming can change lives. Last week, Swiss director Milo Rau’s piece made by the commission for Ghent’s Campo theatre and dealing with the Belgian child murderer Marc Dutroux was shown at London’s Unicorn theatre for two nights. No less than nine institutions from Europe and Singapore are listed as co-producers of this extraordinary theatrical experiment which has already been on tour for a couple of years....

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Chris Goode’s “Jubilee” – The State of The (Punk) Nation

The idea here is both exquisitely complex and wonderfully simple. On the one hand, Chris Goode’s show, Jubilee, is marking the 40th anniversary of Derek Jarman’s alternative cinema classic, the dystopian, ultra postmodern homage to a particular moment in British history – the year 1977– the simultaneous celebration of Queen Elizabeth II’s silver jubilee and the irrepressible, all-consuming advent of the counterculture of punk. On the other hand it is a state of the nation play. In many ways, Goode’s Jubilee is a re-enactment of Jarman’s. The plot of the film is followed very closely with all the cinematic...

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“Lucy McCormick: Triple Threat” at Soho Theatre – Mad Genius at Work

There are some shows that can simply never be made by men. I don’t mean in the sense of subject matter. I mean in the sense of means of production. And biology. Bear with me. In 2010 performer Lucy McCormick became one of the three co-founder members of an all-female company Get In The Back Of The Van. Combining live art, writing, low key banter, cabaret, and theatre, the company proceeded to make a series of performances, installations, and curated projects existing within an intersection of art forms, genres and–often feminist–topics. In some ways, Lucy McCormick’s independent project, Triple...

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The Place Of A Dramaturg In Twenty-First Century England

Between 2002–2005, I carried the professional title of a Dramaturg in the UK. Even when confronted with the friendliest of dispositions, being a “dramaturg” in England [ii] inevitably goes hand in hand with having to explain what your job title means. Having continental roots (especially German, Scandinavian or Eastern European) appears to bestow more of a natural entitlement to the D-word; however, this by no means guarantees freedom of access to the English rehearsal room. My first projects in my new job was a devised piece that would consist of Romani music and folk-tales, which would form Northern Stage’s own contribution to an international festival...

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“The Suppliant Women” – A New Version for Modern Times

Lizzie Clachan’s set is a simple stone floor slanting downwards towards the audience in a warm glow of anticipation. There is a frame at the back of the stage through which we first glimpse a chorus of women tentatively inching their way into view, holding aloft tree branches with pieces of white wool wrapped around them. The bandaged branches –making them look like a bedraggled sailboat on the horizon–is a sign of their good will and a visual symbol of their plea for protection. Unusually for an ancient Greek play, Aeschylus’s The Suppliants is a play in which the...

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“Minefield” Review: Stories From The Soldiers

Every soldier has a story to tell–sometimes a joke, sometimes a parable, often a tragedy. The simple genius of Lola Arias’s Minefield is that it gathers together and places on stage the stories of six veterans from two opposing sides. Even the fact that theatre can make this possible is enough to send tingles down your spine. But then there is more: soldiers, like actors, are likely to have quite a bit of physical prowess to put to good use in a theatrical performance, and–to make more of another cliché–they often play music too. The latter will gradually become a secret ingredient that really makes this show stand...

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RashDash – “Two Man Show”

Over the last ten years, a new form has evolved on the British stage, rather simply referred to as “gig theatre.” Though one could trace its origins to the tents of the Latitude and Edinburgh Fringe festivals, this year the genre has even reached the Manchester International Festival, prompting speculation of its debt to the dying recorded music industry. The use of live music in theatre is not so new. Brecht was an early advocate. In the UK, Kneehigh Theatre made it fashionable in the last twenty years, inspired by a mix of Grotowskian and rural English community theatre...

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“Beowulf” at The Unicorn Theatre

How do you bring a 10th-century Old English epic closer to a 21st-century audience? And, more specifically, as this version at London’s Unicorn Theatre would have us ask: How do you bring a medieval tale of warrior-worship to audiences ages eight and above? For all its potential resonances with Game of Thrones or World of Warcraft, Beowulf is not exactly English literature’s piece of cake. It features unpronounceable names, unimaginable locations and interminable accounts of impossible heroic exploits. Its long history has given rise to much scholarship and debate, multiple interpretations and attempts at retelling and modernization – most...

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“Kings of War” – A Dramaturgical Perspective

As part of a series of essays on Ivo van Hove’s dramaturgy, Duska Radosavljevic unpicks the director’s bold reimagining of Shakespeare’s history plays, Kings of War at the Barbican. In order to help us see past the words and into the dramaturgical heart of a play, in her essay “EF’s Visit to a Small Planet,” Elinor Fuchs asks us to: ‘Mold the play into a medium-sized ball, set it before you in the middle distance, and squint your eyes.’ You could apply the same technique to viewing a production – and if you wanted to see good production dramaturgy...

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