About the play:
controversial, audacious and innovative play. This was his last work for the
stage, finished only days before his assassination. This daring insight into
mans most intimate feelings and longing for freedom shows how the
Andalusian poet was on the brick of the most experimental phase of his
creativity dreamlike, extravagant and brazenly explicit. Lorca himself
said: It is the best I have written for theater
Notes from the
Somewhere on this planet, there does exist the definitive and complete
script of El Publico that Garcνa Lorca gave to a unnamed typist to
put into final form. But that copy still has not been found. What we offer
here is the version that Rafael Martνnez Nadal salvaged and edited by
working from the only retrieved version of the manuscript, one that had the
first few pages of the play written on pieces of stationary from the Hotel
La Uniσn in La Havana, Cuba, and that had other pages missing. Lorca
finished the play in Spain in August, 1930, but the determined order of the
remaining scenes are also a source of speculation.
In his book, Federico Garcνa Lorca, A Life, Ian
Gibson wrote: You cant help but see reflected in El Publico, as you
also do in many of his poems in New York, the anguish that overcame the poet
when his relationships with Dalν and Aladrιn came apart, and his attempt to
face his own homosexuality along with the problems of living a double life
in public. Through that train of thought, it isnt far fetched to see
the mirror of his own existence that Lorca used to create the harsh
recriminations which the characters hurl at each other, the twisted
jealousies that torment them, and the vitriolic explosions of rancor that
constantly call into doubt the validity of love.
Foreshadowing Orfeo by Cocteau, El Pϊblico is
an exceptional and revolutionary work in many senses for its transcendence
of the limits imposed by surrealism, creating a dream-like quality but
without giving into the dictates of the unconscious; for its unflinching
criticism of contemporary theater; for its so far-ahead-of-its-time dealing
with homoeroticism; and finally, for the almost infinite number of possible
interpretations it offers the reader of spectator.
is a cruel work and
movingly romantic, erotic, violent, upsetting and unsettling. It is a work
that, like our dreams, continually transforms itself, changing its substance
and density, maddening us and seducing us, permitting no peace. From my own
experience, I can say that it is impossible to be a part of this work and
remain unchanged by it.
I have intended this as homage to the courage of a man
assassinated by intolerance in the hope that we can fully comprehend the
horror of the loss of a poet and the works that hell never write.
About the author:
Garcνa Lorca was born in Fuente Vaqueros, Spain on June 5, 1898. He arguably
is the poet of contemporary Spanish most universally known, his work
rivaling Don Quixote by Cervantes in terms of world wide recognition.
Lorcas inexhaustible and explosive genius created poetry,
theater, essays, music, drawings; he directed theater and compiled popular
folk treasures. While all that, as captured in his published work, is
well-known and admired by the majority of people, much of his private life
remained cloaked in a veil of mystery. Speculations about his sexual
orientation, for example, still provoke controversy, even in light of
exhaustive biographies, such as the one by his personal friend, Rafael
Martνnez Nadal, or the more recent and respected ones by Ian Gibson.
Gibson examines in extensive detail Lorcas desperate love
for the painter Salvador Dalν, his torturous relations with the sculptor
Emilio Aladrιn Perojo, and towards the end of Lorcas life, his passion for
Rafael Rodriguez Rapϊn. But they are anecdotes told by third parties. So
what better way to truly discover Lorcas desperation than by turning to
what he himself wrote in El Pϊblico?
Lorca died in Fuente Grande in 1936.