Thursday, January 15, 2009

Lost in Translation? Surely yes!

I've always been drawn to the theatre, and living in Barcelona there are loads of theatres with often some cracking plays and musicals on, but I've only even been once (Stomp, the percussion with bin lids, about 5 years ago!).

Avenguda Paral·lel has the most concentrated amount of theatres in the city with some classics such as Cuitat Condal, Teatro Victoria, Apolo, Teatre Tivoli, and the Moulin Rouge style "El Molino" (the windmill) which is currently undergoing a full makeover (well overdue) and perhaps something that I'll post about soon. These are some of the most famous theatres in Barcelona, and often have full houses for many varied productions.

The problem for me, of course is that they're all in Catalan (very few are in Spanish). I'm not saying that I wouldn't be able to follow the plot or understand the lines, but many productions up and down Paral·lel are the broadway classics, and I just can't bring myself to listen to "Grease" or something similar in Spanish or Catalan?! Surely the songs translated don't even rhyme?!
Barcelona sights - Monty Python's Spamalot at the Teatre Victoria
I don't doubt that I'm missing out on possibly a great night, and some friends testify to have had a great night watching the cast of Mamma Mia (which was prolonged due to huge success) strut their stuff on the boards. Fame has also just left the city after record breaking ticket sales.

Cuitat Condal, for example, has the permanent fixture of Joan Pera, who is a right unto himself - if only because he is the voice double for Woody Allen in all his films (he even makes a cameo in Vicky Cristina Barcelona), amongst others. And Paral·lel metro station at Nou de la Rambla is neighbour co-incidentally to Bagdad "theatre" the city's live porn show.

So what I really find amusing, (and makes me feel like I'm not missing out on too much) is when I see something like Monty Python's Spamalot coming up - and having rave reviews!! The Catalans think that their humour is very satyrical and sarcastic, kind of like the English - TV3 for example shows repeats of the Young Ones and Blackadder at prime time (ask any Catalan if they know the series, you'll be surprised at the answer!). So I guess it's no surprise to me that Spamalot has done so well, even if we are all in "crisis". I suppose it's just as important to be able to laugh about life than get depressed about the crisis, right?! Good on them,I say, and maybe I'll sneak into a matinee this month and let you know how it goes....if not,I can always pop down to the nearby Llantiol Theatre in the Raval for some English comedy nights!

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