Heart of Darkness
"My hour of favour was over; I found myself lumped along with Kurtz as a partisan of methods for which the time was not ripe: I was unsound! Ah! but it was something to have at least a choice of nightmares." – Joseph Conrad, 'Heart of Darkness'
When he agrees to captain a Belgian trading company’s steamer up the Congo River, Charles Marlow begins a journey of no return. His mission takes him ever deeper into the heart of the African continent, to a realm in which an ivory trader named Kurtz enjoys a god-like status. Marlow is under instructions to put an end to Kurtz’s tyranny and return him to civilisation, while securing Kurtz’s large stockpiles of ivory for the Belgian trading firm. But on this voyage into the “heart of darkness“, Marlow experiences a breakdown of moral order. It becomes impossible to tell good from evil, or right from wrong; the only decision that Marlow can still make is for the nightmare of his choice. Joseph Conrad’s most famous work is the ultimate critique of European colonialism in Africa; it shows the madness of the white man’s role in what they called “The Dark Continent”. Using John von Düffel’s new stage adaptation, director Andreas Kriegenburg explores the virus of European colonialism and its effect on Africa, the fears and mindset of the colonisers, as well as the way they react and change when confronted with a truly foreign land and its people.
September 17, 2009