Vanished Island
Vanished Island
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  • 승인 2007.08.02 11:07
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Jang Yong-hwee, Professor  Department of Drama-Pictures Suwon Women's College
   Sintinart Company, created by Gagmen, performed 2004 <Island> which originally written by Adol Hugard and co-produced Pyo In-bong and Park Jung-geun. Co-made by Adol Hugard, John Carny and Winston Anchony, original <Island> has been played over for 30 years, and it sharply describes racial discrimination in a confined place "Prison." "Experiment Theater" at that time in Korea played it first in 1977 produced by Yoon Ho-jin. Unknown Suh In-suk stepped into the famous actors through this play and it set the record of the longest performance supported by the young who went through Human right infringement under Renovation Dictatorship Ages. Whereas in South Africa, Author's hometown, it was considered seriously troublesome as much as not to be played, it has gained excellence in works and honored to receive "Tony Award" in United States. Original <Island>, which is regarded as the Bible of Human Right, becomes to life newly reconstructed by several young people over 30 years.
   Original <Island> remarkably depicts discriminative suppression on black political prisoners, freedom, justice, and the truth reflecting on full sense of humanity, but in 2004 <Island>, setting changes into an unknown Korean prison and two characters, Jae-i and I-su are there in a room. They returns to the prison after all-day-long labor at a sandpit.
It is the punishment caused by their resistance to a terrible Guard, a Serpent. They are spending series of much painful days healing each others' hurts sometimes, giving comforts to each other sometimes, and fighting seriously sometimes. At a time, they would grab a thing and make a call to outside. They talk and cry and laugh to everyone who they want to do it to and speak out their longing to people. One day, Jae-i gets the order to leave the prison after 3 months. I-su is happy to hear it, but he cries out thinking of fear coming without Jae-i. He wonders he would get disappeared his presence in I-su's heart. Meanwhile, they practices <Antigone> which will be performed at Prisoners' party. However, deeply fell into <Antigone>, I-su recites Antigone's lines and gets stuck in prison life again.  
  He cries out, "The law saves me, and the law kills me, too." I, now, am coming back to my surviving death." 2004 <Island> asks us once more of "what the true freedom, real truth, and the true righteousness are" in this ages, which we live in chaos  confronting conservative and progressive ideas.
   But 2004 <Island> left a lot of unsatisfaction as much as our high expectation. Unfortunately in this play, it is hardly to find the deep pains to express racial discrimination, heartbroken sorrow of human right infringement and pursuit for true freedom. Only more developed techniques, frustrating gestures filled with sound beyond actors' ability and their skills without energy deep inside us can be found. In a nut shell, 2004 <Island> shows the capitalism money could enliven Theaters and could give a chance to a person to place a play in stage as he wants to. I do not dare to prejudice co-producers and actors are all gagmen. Eevn Shakespear might set the play without success and even unknown writer might create the masterpiece of his own. However, 2004 <Island> is quite loose from the beginning of reconstruction. Location is changed into an island in Korea and prisoners' name in Korean, too. And that's it. Those changes are all about it. Several coarse laughters could stimulate audience, but there is no more bursting into an anger coming afterwards. Only one thing this play comforts us is actors are doing something at stage with desire. To see their faces with sweat just gives a little consolation.
   Plays are not done in an easy way after all. Even when they are played requesting audience to pay not-a-little-money, there have to be responsibility followed by along with desire and effort. Concept of the play is to be clear. Dubious theme and not-trained acting at stage could cause to ruin masterpiece's honor and value. That's why plays performed that kind of work have to be clear. But 2004 <Island>, we could give high points to those young ones to challenge their ability in such a hard genre of drama, although they can be fully succeeded in other areas, provided that they study and try harder than their ability to survive as one of sincere theater people.

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