Synopsis of the Play
By a pen never touched by Shakespeare's fingertips
By Zoubir Ben Bouchta
Synopsis translated from the original Classical Arabic by Rajae Khaloufi
Submitting to the will of the departed father Si Istanbuli, Marshana marries Mehdi a marriage of convenience after forsaking her relationship with Albarrani without ability to forget him. It is hopeless love that the discrepancies of her emotions and the historical enmity between the grandfathers and the parents of Marshana and Albarrani render more hopeless. Within this background, replete with ebbing and flowing waves of emotions, the storms of the rancor Lady R'himu (the nurse) conceals against the secret lovers (Marshana and Albarrani) blow. R'himu plays a scheme: she provokes Marshana against Albarrani, then Mehdi (Marshana's husband) against the two all together through feigning a slander. The illusive love letter is the event that brings the matter into a scandal. The "Alley of Shakespeare" is not only a two or a threefold love story, it is also characters springing from the ashes of memory to shine on stage [bearing] the elegance of the past in the raiment of present. Bu Mwaret the Fqih appointed by the law to settle the heritage of Lady Scott. Capy Sauta with a country guitar, clinging to the hippie utopianism he had absorbed in the internal market when throngs of hippies went to Tangier in the sixties and seventies. Mehdi the son of a dancer who used to inflame with her body Barbara Hutton's soirées in her gardens in the Qasbah quarter. He pretends political strife and confinement and juggles titles and positions to defraud and burglarize individual and collective realties. He is a disciplined clown who masters playing with procedures and laws without losing his legal equilibrium with his clownish dancing. He is also a professional fraud who knows well how to benefit from democracy. Yet how relevant is Shakespeare to "The Alley of Shakespeare"? First, it is the name of a court in the Marshan where the English presence in the international Tangier was eminent and of a magical supremacy. Second, Shakespeare symbolizes manipulating themes that his major tragedies are renowned with like Hamlet, Othello and Romeo and Juliet. These themes take their human dimension, in a century other than the sixteenth and seventeenth ones, with the characters and stories of this alley that boasts of bearing the name of Shakespeare. Hopeless love, slander, jealousy, envy, hatred, vengeance and fortune and power conflicts in "The Alley of Shakespeare" reflect a reading springing from the life of our society today by a pen never touched by Shakespeare's fingertips.
(from a handout at the show on February 9, 2007)
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