01 April 2020

Status Quo

I haven't been to the theatre lately, so this time I procured a ticket for Status Quo by Maja Zade, which was playing in Schaubühne. It was quite a long play, running at 2 hours and ten minutes without a break, but I must say, every minute of it was quite engaging.

It started when Florian entered the room. At first, it didn't look like the play was already starting, he was sort of kinda greeting the audience. It later became evident that he was rehearsing his introductory words for his job interview, which was about to begin. It was a bizarre interview, but only because Florian is a guy, and this play is about an alternative universe, where men are the object of desire and discrimination, and men get asked in job interviews about whether they want to have a child or not.

The play overall portrays three different Florians, all shortened to Flos, because the women always think that they can shorten all instances of Florian to Flo. One of them is a real estate agent who has a posse of women in the company that don't make his life easy. Another is an apprentice at a chemist's, who becomes the victim of sexual harassment by his big fat boss. And the third one is an aspiring actor who becomes fascinated by this female theatre director, and surely enough their relationship becomes quite sexual.

In this world where women call the shots, every Florian becomes a Flo.

It's satire, but by flipping the world around, the audience faces the in-your-face realisation of how messed up our real world is. These are things that are done to women in the real world, and they're so prevalent that we think it's normal. But when you flip the world around, it's absurdity is magnified. After watching it, I realise that I don't want to be Flo, but that just means that in our real world, perhaps plenty of women also feel the same way.

In the end, I liked this production. It made me think, and I hope plenty of others would take some time and think about it too.

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