Sunday, February 13, 2011
On the Eve of Bahman 25
Web access denied page - you see this a lot in Iran
Bahman 25 is tomorrow's date in Iran - Valentine's Day for Canada. There may be a demonstration, there may not be. The Revolutionary Guard seems prepped to crush any protest, according to both Al Jazeera, and to a young man I spoke to here. Time will tell. Or rather - tomorrow will tell. I will be safe inside a theatre building - but apparently will have a view of where the demonstration will take place, if it does. Al Jazeera seems uncertain of anything, except that Iran is not like Egypt. The government has stepped up arrests across the country over the last 24 hours. The White House has called this evidence of a regime afraid of its own citizens, and has called upon Iran to allow peaceful demonstrations.
In the meantime:
1) Peter Stein's show was good. Very simple. He read from Faust. A tremendous pianist played a wonderful accompaniment by an Italian composer. Otherwise, a bare stage. Stein in a black suit. The pianist in tails. Mephistopheles is in the HOUSE.
2) The Iranian show i saw tonight was an interesting idea, but not a successful piece of theatre. It was a retelling of the section of the Oedipus story where the newly blind Oedipus is in exile in Colonus. This version consisted of a series of letters from Antigone to her sister Ismene, back in Thebes. They describe Colonus as hell on earth, full of sand and fire, a place of fear. This was political allegory (that was the interesting part). Sadly, the show itself was as flat as an allegorical pancake.
3) More blocked websites: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/tehranbureau/, http://apnews.myway.com/, http://www.mojahedin.org/pages/detailsNews.aspx?newsid=77788. Google will also not work for certain words. But Al Jazeera is not blocked.
Tomorrow will be interesting, one way or another...