Latibær is the winter project of the Sólheimar Theater Company and rehearsals began in October under the direction of Edda Björgvinsdóttir. This method was chosen to have more than one actor wrestling with each role. The guiding principle was that everyone would get their dream role. The cast is diverse and about 40 actors take part in the show. Almost all the members of the theater company ha...
The children’s play Afram Latibær by Magnús Scheving will be premiered in Loftkastalinn Theatre today at 14:00h. Þröstur Helgason met the author and director of the work during a rehearsal.
I wrote the book, on which the play is based, from lectures I gave to kids in schools around the country for a few years” says Magnús Scheving. “During these lectures, various questions were asked by the children about health, such as how one could stop eating candy and start exercising. The play tries to answer these questions.
It features various characters that the kids definitely know, such as Halla hrekkjusvín, Nenni níski and Maggi mjói. “Perhaps these are kids as they should not be, but then the play is about how you can change the way of life for the better.”
To a better life style
The story Áfram Latibær is a short story about a town where the townspeople are extremely lazy, do not think about their health and spend all their time in front of the TV. The children in town eat candy every day, play computer games and have forgotten how to play outside. The mayor of Latibær, a former sportsman, has fallen into the same style of living as the other townspeople and his old sports uniform is lying dusty in his wardrobe. He is therefore in serious trouble when he receives a letter from the president stating that a sports festival should be held in all cities of the country. In his distress, he meets the sports elf who offers his help to help the townspeople to get a grip on their way of life.
The message of the story is that health, joy of life and a positive message pay off. This is expressed in the story in a positive and fun way, and the image of the sports elf, who is full of joy and energy, weighs the most. He guides the townspeople on how to change their way of life for the better and teaches them playing and exercises.
Various issues such as the differences between violence and play, selfishness, diet and more are addressed. Magnús says that he has always imagined this story on stage. “Baltasar Kormákur, who is the director of the play, has managed to bring it on stage almost exactly as I had imagined it. And there have actually been people here at the rehearsals who know the book and have found it possible to set the stage in a particularly fun way so that the story actually comes to life on stage. “
Baltasar says a lot of effort is put into this show because it never pays to cut corners when putting on a show for children, they will see it immediately. “In this respect, it will be like other musicals I have done, a lot of visuals and a good mood. I would like the kids to have fun at this show, just like the adults did at the musical Hair. That may be why Maggi asked me to direct the play. He wants to get the same mood in front of the kids as in my other musicals.”
“Yes, it’s important not to talk down to the children.” Magnús continues. “They should have as much fun as possible. I think it worked out here. There is a lot of life and energy in the show and it’s exciting.”
Many people appear in the show and in that group there are many well-known actors and entertainers. Starring Magnús Scheving, Magnús Ólafsson, Steinn Armann Magnússon, Sigurjón Kjartansson, Selma Björnsdóttir, Sigurveig Jónsdóttir, Pálína Jónsdóttir, Jón Stefán Kristjánsson, Ingrid Jónsdóttir, Ari Matthíasson and Ólafur Guðmundsson. “I have followed the way” says Baltasar, “of choosing very outspoken people for the roles, that is to say people with very clear characteristics. This is slightly exaggerated that the look of the show will be like in a cartoon. Costumes and sets also intensify this. The characters will be very strong that way.”
Unusually healthy text
Magnús and Baltasar say that the rehearsals went well and so did the collaboration. Magnús says that for the first time in his life he has experienced, under the direction of Baltasar, being asked to be a little more enthusiastic. “”Baltasar is the first man to ask me to put in a little more effort, and put more energy into acting, some more hamstrings. I thought I’d never hear a comment like that again.” It’s also fun that this play contains unusually healthy text lines that the actors may not be used to. “Sometimes they’ve had a little trouble with some of the lines. But now it all worked out.”
Original music is in the show by Máni Svavarsson with lyrics by Davíð Þór Jónsson. Costumes were made by María Olafsdóttir. Ticket sales take place through Íslandsbanki’s ATM.