Queer Zagreb seasone 2023 / La Machine de Turing

Records of Alan Mathison Turing, of his mathematical-ingenious brain, and of the historical facts that are formed around him are surprising, interesting, and full of theoretical speculation about the impact that research into athletically built genius has had and still has on the development of artificial intelligence. We can read about his research work, which was crucial to solving the Enigma (a German electric message encryption device used during World War II), about his scientific work at the University of Manchester, about his more than just friend Christopher Morcom, who died prematurely as a result of raw milk poisoning and about his tragic fate. He was forced to choose between ways to deprive him of his precious freedom in the midst of then-hostile society. He was succumbed to chemical castration, which led him to physical and mental modifications, to the impossibility of physical and mental speed, versatility, humor, dedication, and daring focus. But we can understand his story or read it differently, through the eyes of an amazing man who, with his eternally young and playful mind, selflessly skipped the time in which he was born. He saw the human brain not only as a scientist but as a man aware of the breadth of the human spirit and mind. In the perception of the world, he was faster and so unusual to the eyes of every individual in the society of the time that he tailored the world he shared by the personification of his machine in his own way as the only tolerable reality. There, everything was his and otherwise allowed because it was meaningful and understandable only to him. Whoever entered it had to play by its rules, recognize and accept it, even if not fully understand it. Those who failed, however, eventually executed Turing. “It’s a story about a man running.” wrote author Benoit Solès. The first performance in Slovene gives space to a man who ran a marathon with his machine and indispensable friendly minds, a scientist who outlined the foundations of modern computer science and at the same time unknowingly placed a mirror in a society that hopefully will not repeat its impatient and hostile mistakes.

Ivica Buljan holds a degree in French and Comparative Literature from the University of Zagreb. He has worked as a theater critic and for the past 25 years he has been directing plays written by established authors such as M.Tsvetaeva, P.P. Pasolini, H. Muller, R. Walser, E. Jelinek, M. Krleža, H. Guibert, A. Hilling, D. Kiš, G. Strnis, R. Bolaña, F. Šovagović, I. Sajko, Z. Mesarić, D. Ugrešić, D. Karakaš, O. Savićević-Ivančević, G. Vojnović, T. Štivičić. He has directed in theaters in Slovenia, USA, Germany, France, Italy, Hungary, Portugal, Belgium, Russia, Montenegro, Ivory Coast, Norway and Serbia. From 1998 to 2001. he was the Head of Drama of the Croatian National Theater in Split. He is the co- founder of Mini teater in Ljubljana and the Festival of World Theater in Zagreb. He received several Borštnik awards, the Sterija award, the Vjesnik award Dubravko Dujšin, the Branko Gavella Award, the Petar Brečić Award, the Havana City Medals and the highest recognition of the Republic of Slovenia in the field of art, the Prešern Fund Award. He was awarded the Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters, which the French Government awards to deserving individuals for their advocacy in the field of culture and art. From 2014 until 2022 he was the Head of Drama of the Croatian National Theater in Zagreb.

Benoit Solès graduated from the Classe Supérieure d’Art Dramatique de Paris. He made his debut in the musical shows of Roger Louret, crowned with Molières: La Java des Mémoires and Les Annees Twist. He appeared in numerous television series (Julie Lescaut, Profilage, RIS, Alice Nevers, Boulevard du Palais, etc.) and television films (Le Juste, La Pompadour, Louis XV le soleil noir, Le Chasseur, L’Affaire Salengro). He worked in cinema, collaborating with directors André Téchiné (La fille du RER), Vijay Singh (One Dollar Curry), Michel Blanc (Embrassez qui vous rire), Ramesh Aravind (Burtterfly) and Éva Ionesco (Une Jeunesse dorée). His play La Machine de Turing was premiered at the Festival d’Avignon 2018 and then picked up later in fall at the Théâtre Michel in Paris, where it kept being performed ever since. At the same time, the play continued the French and international tour until May 2020 before it would return to its Festival d’Avignon 2020.

Benoit Solès
La Machine de Turing 
Inspired by Hugh Whitemore’s play: BREAKING THE CODE
Based on ALAN TURING – THE ENIGMA by Andrew Hodges

Author: Benoit Solès
Translator: Ignac Fock
Director: Ivica Buljan
Cast: Nejc Cijan Garlatti, Timon Šturbej and Nika Korenjak
Scenography, lighting design and video design: Probe 13 and Toni Soprano Meneglejte
Costume designer: Alan Hranitelj
Composer: Andrej Makor
Proof reader: Jože Faganel
Director’s assistant: Nika Korenjak
Music recorded by musicians: Meta Fajdiga (klavir), Jaka Trilar (violončelo) and Andrej Makor (bariton solo)
Recording and sound mastering: Milko Lazar
Production: Mini teater, SLO, 2021.
Producers: Branislav Cerović and Sandra Ristić


Language: Slovenian
Subtitles: Croatian

The play is performed as part of the Queer Zagreb 2023 season, organized by the Domino Association / Udruga Domino.

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