MARIÁN AMSLER (1979, Bratislava)

He graduated in theatre dramaturgy from the Academy of Performing Arts in Bratislava where he also completed his doctoral study in drama direction. His stagings of Chekhov’s plays Platonov and Ivanov produced at the university were awarded at international theatre festivals in Warsaw, Prague and Brno. For both productions, Amsler won the Dosky Award in the Discovery of the Season category. After the completion of his studies, he worked as a director in collaboration with numerous Slovak and Czech theatres (Drama Department of the Slovak National Theatre, Andrej Bagar Theatre in Nitra, Slovak Chamber Theatre in Martin, Aréna Theatre in Bratislava, Dejvice Theatre in Prague, Petr Bezruč Theatre in Ostrava, Drama Studio in Ústí nad Labem). In 2005, he co-founded the independent Letí Theatre in Prague which has maintained an exclusive focus on contemporary dramatic texts. From 2008 he worked as in-house director for the HaTheatre in Brno and between 2010 and 2014 was its artistic director. Between 2015 – 2018, he acted as director and artistic director of ASTORKA Korzo ’90 Theatre, Bratislava. Amsler currently works as assistant professor at the Department of Direction and Dramaturgy of the Academy of Performing Arts in Bratislava.

 

Description of his work:

Marián Amsler is one of the directors who keep returning to the plays written by Anton Pavlovich Chekhov, or at least to his motifs (Platonov, Ivanov, Three Sisters, Smokers and Saviours, You Will Eat Yourself, The Cherry Orchard, Hostel Tchekhov). While still a student at the Academy of Performing Arts, Amsler proved to be a mature theatremaker able to communicate his message through a production clearly and with great artistic quality. His student productions of Chekhov’s Platonov and Ivanov oscillated between comedy, farce and drama and were much more than just skillfully staged productions – they were also a generational expression commenting on contemporary society. In his early productions, Amsler succeeded in sensitively interpreting the feelings of modern young people. His entire line of work displays strong interest in current affairs as such. This kind of focus is primarily reflected in the selection of production titles – these mostly include contemporary drama, texts that have not been stage so far, or adaptations of novels. Amsler’s field of vision encompasses also Slovak and world classics which he supplies with a hallmark of contemporaneity and topicality.

In contemporary texts directed by Amsler there is usually a latently present effort to do less traditional forms of theatre and formal experiment. A good example of this is one of his most recent productions, the adaptation of Ingmar Bergman’s movie Fanny and Alexander, in which Amsler applied the “live cinema” method and form – something that has not yet been seen on Slovak stages in any project. Amsler is capable of defending and aesthetically promoting the chosen forms, which are often very complicated and technically difficult. The result is a synthesis of all theatrical elements and a distinctive stage form.

Amsler’s work with actors is based on exceptionally stimulating cooperation between the director and performer. This results in a synthesis of clear psychological motivations, authentic performance and suitably selected acting instruments that do not eschew delicacy or expressivity and always tastefully resonate along the specific stage situation. The ensemble of actors Amsler collaborates with can thus be tuned to offer a well-balanced performance. This strongly contributes to the harmonious artistic result. One of the striking attributes of Amsler’s direction is the well-balanced content and visuals of each production. He directs noticeable scenes that are easy to remember mostly owing to a distinctive harmonization of visual, musical and subject elements in the productions. He deliberately combines several theatrical concepts simultaneously, which produces a special, often dream-like stage energy.

Marián Amsler is a flexible director, a prolific artist working in two countries at the same time, who is able to stage a thematically strong, performative and humanely communicative production. The artistic testimony of Amsler’s work is proportional to the reality in which he creates it – he presents clearly formulated ideas using a broad scope of expression instruments that are compacted into a distinctive, striking whole.

 

List of directed productions:

2002 / Academy of Performing Arts and Studio 12, Bratislava / Olga Mukhina: Tanya – Tanya

2003 / Academy of Performing Arts / Anton Pavlovich Chekhov: Platonov

2003 / Aréna Theatre, Bratislava / Olga Mukhina: You

2003 / Aréna Theatre / David Gieselmann: Mr. Kolpert

2004 / Studio 12, Bratislava / Ivan Vyrypaev: Dreams

2004 / Slovak Chamber Theatre, Martin / Phyllis Nagy: The Talented Mr. Ripley

2004 / DISK Theatre, Theatre Faculty of the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague, Czech Republic / Vassily Sigarev: Plasticine

2004 / Studio 12, Bratislava / Eva Maliti-Fraňová: The Cave Virgin

2005 / Dejvice Theatre, Prague, Czech Republic / Isaac Bashevis Singer, Karel František Tománek: Lovestory

2005 / Aréna Theatre, Bratislava / Falk Richter: God is a DJ

2005 / Letí Theatre, Prague, Czech Republic / Olga Mukhina: Flying

2005 / Theatre Studio Marta, Janáček Academy of Performing Arts, Brno, Czech Republic / David Drábek: Aquabelles

2006 / Academy of Performing Arts / Anton Pavlovich Chekhov: Ivanov

2006 / Drama Studio Ústí nad Labem, Ústí nad Labem, Czech Republic / Anton Pavlovich Chekhov: Three Sisters

2007 / Aréna Theatre, Bratislava / Michal Hvorecký: Plush

2007 / DISK Theatre, Theatre Faculty of the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague, Czech Republic / Federico García Lorca: Blood Wedding

2007 / Letí Theatre, Prague, Czech Republic / Marián Amsler and a team of authors: Prague is FLYING

2007 / HaTheatre, Brno, Czech Republic / Petr Janeček, Luboš Balák, Pavel Baďura: Black Ambulance

2007 / West Bohemian Theatre in Cheb, Cheb, Czech Republic / Caryl Churchill: Top Girls

2007 / Andrej Bagar Theatre, Nitra / Július Barč-Ivan: Mother

2008 / National Theatre Brno, Reduta Theatre, Brno, Czech Republic / Jean Genet: The Maids

2008 / HaTheatre, Brno, Czech Republic / Agatha Christie: And Then There Were None (Ten Little... )

2008 / HaTheatre, Brno, Czech Republic / Marián Amsler, Luboš Balák: Ecstasy

2008 / Letí Theatre, Prague, Czech Republic / Viliam Klimáček: Au Pairs

2009 / Drama Department of the Slovak National Theatre / David Gieselmann: The Farm

2009 / HaTheatre, Brno, Czech Republic / David Gieselmann: Mr. Kolpert

2009 / HaTheatre, Brno, Czech Republic / Marián Amsler, Luboš Balák: Bohnice or Man, Don’t Get Annoyed With Me

2010 / Petr Bezruč Theatre, Ostrava, Czech Republic / Iztok Lovrić: Lemonade

2010 / HaTheatre, Brno, Czech Republic / Viliam Klimáček: I Am Kraftwerk!

2011 / Letí Theatre and Theatre on the Balustrade, Prague, Czech Republic / Viliam Klimáček: I Am in Prague, My Liver’s in London (part of the project Heaven Not Receiving)

2011 / HaTheatre, Brno, Czech Republic / David Gieselmann: The Pigeons

2011 / HaTheatre, Brno, Czech Republic / Anna Saavedra: Czech Currency

2011 / HaTheatre, Brno, Czech Republic / Falk Richter: Delirium

2012 / Drama Department of the Slovak National Theatre / Anna Jablonská: Pagans

2012 / HaTheatre, Brno, Czech Republic / Anna Saavedra: A Secret Message From a Planet of Mothers  / Mamma Guerilla

2012 / Letí Theatre, Praha, Czech Republic / Bernhard Studlar: iPlay

2012 / HaTheatre, Brno, Czech Republic / Marius von Mayenburg: Perplex

2013 / HaTheatre, Goose on a String Theatre and Theatre at the Table, Brno, Czech Republic / a team of authors: Rozrazil

2013 / Academy of Performing Arts , Bratislava / Anna Saavedra: Smokers and Saviours

2013 / HaTheatre, Brno, Czech Republic / Anton Pavlovich Chekhov: You Will Eat Yourself (Platonov)

2014 / Drama Department of the Slovak National Theatre / Charlotte Brontë, Marián Amsler, Anna Saavedra: Jane Eyre

2014 / ASTORKA Korzo ’90 Theatre / Sławomir Mrożek: Love in the Crimea

2014 / Drama Department of the Slovak National Theatre / a team of authors: The Ten Commandments (Thou Shalt Not Bear False Witness Against Your Neighbour)

2014 / Letí Theatre in the DOX Gallery, Prague, Czech Republic / Esteve Soler: Against Progress. Against Love. Against Democracy.

2014 / City Theatre Kladno, Kladno, Czech Republic / Agatha Christie: Death on the Nile

2014 / HaTheatre, Brno, Czech Republic / Marián Amsler, Kateřina Tučková: The Expulsion of Gerta Schnirch

2014 / ASTORKA Korzo ’90 Theatre, Bratislava / Anna Saavedra: Smokers and Saviours

2015 / GUnaGU Theatre, Bratislava / Viliam Klimáček: The Dark Side of the Moon

2015 / Aréna Theatre, Bratislava / Marián Amsler, Honoré de Balzac: The Splendours and Miseries of Courtesans

2015 / HaTheatre, Brno, Czech Republic / Marius von Mayenburg: Martyr

2015 / Klicper Theatre Hradec Králové, Hradec Králové, Czech Republic / Molière: The School for Wives

2015 / Letí Theatre, Prague, Czech Republic / Falk Richter: Small Town Boy

2015 / ASTORKA Korzo ’90 Theatre / Marián Amsler, Anton Pavlovich Chekhov: The Cherry Orchard

2015 / J. K. Tyl Theatre in Pilsen, Pilsen, Czech Republic / Friedrich Schiller: Intrigue and Love

2016 / Academy of Performing Arts, Bratislava / Lenka Garajová: Hostel Tchekhov

2016 / Drama Department of the Slovak National Theatre / Marián Amsler, Ingmar Bergman: Fanny and Alexander

2016 / HaTheatre, Brno, Czech Republic / Marián Amsler: He

2016 / National Theatre Brno, Czech Republic: Karel Schulz, Lenka Lagronová: The Stone and the Pain

2016 / Aréna Theatre, Bratislava / Peter Lomnický: Submission

2017 / Slovak Chamber Theatre Martin / Oscar Wilde, Marián Amsler: The Picture of Dorian Gray

2017 / ASTORKA Korzo ’90 Theatre, Bratislava / David Gieselmann: Container Paris

2017 / Petr Bezruč Theatre, Ostrava, Czech Republic / Agota Kristoff, Marie Špalová: The Notebook

2017 / Letí Theatre, Prague, Czech Republic / Marius von Mayenburg: Bang

 

Awards:

2003 / Dosky Award in the Discovery of the Season category for the production Platonov

2003 / Grand Prix at the International Festival of Theatre Schools in Warsaw for the production Platonov

2003 / Audience Award at the Zlomvaz International Festival in Prague for the production Platonov

2003 / Audience Award at the Setkání/Encounter International Festival in Brno for the production Platonov

2006 / Dosky Award in the Discovery of the Season category for the production Ivanov

2012 / Dosky Award in the Best Direction of the Season category for the production Pagans

2015 / Award of the Divadelní Noviny journal in 2014/2015 in the drama theatre category for Best Direction of the Season for the production The Expulsion of Gerta Schnirch

2016 / Dosky Award for Best production of the Season for Fanny and Alexander produced at the Drama Department of the Slovak National Theatre.

 

Foreign language skills: English, German

Contact: marian.amsler@gmail.com

 

Videos from productions:

 

Pagans, 2012

video: archive SND

Love in the Crimea, 2014

video: archive Divadlo ASTORKA Korzo ´90

Submission, 2016

video: archív Divadla Aréna

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