I spent the last ten days at SibFest, an international theatre festival in the picturesque city of Sibiu, located in the center of Romania. I took the regional train from Cluj south for four hours, enjoying the beautiful hills and farms of Transylvania. Since I was staying for an extended period and being joined by an American friend, I rented a loft apartment not far from the city’s center. Rain going down and coming back, but clear and cool throughout my stay.
My plan was to see as much theatre as possible from as many countries as possible and, by booking far in advance, I was able to get tickets to most of the productions I wanted. The most expensive tickets were just 44 RON (approximately $10), and many events were free. My slate of productions ended up being:
- Friday, June 9: Lecture about Nothing, Robert Wilson, USA
- Saturday, June 10: Metamorphosis, National Theatre of Sibiu, Romania
- Sunday, June 11: Live Cinema, Brent Green and Sam Green, USA
- Monday, June 12: The Lower Depths, Hungarian State Theatre of Cluj, Romania
- Wednesday, June 14: Macbeth: Paint It Black, Our Ryuzanji Theater, Taiwan
- Thursday, June 15: Inner Landscapes, Compagnie Philippe Genty, France and The Rocky Horror Show, National Theatre of Sibiu, Romania
- Friday, June 16: Macbeth, Tang Shu-Wing Theater Studio, Hong Kong
Without attempting to critique any of the shows, I’ll just say that the Macbeth from Hong Kong was the most artistically satisfying for me, while Metamorphosis was the most exciting (and visceral).
Since this was my American friend Stuart’s first visit to Romania, he wanted to see more of the country, particularly Transylvania and anything Dracula-related, so we worked in a side trip to Sighișoara, a medieval Saxon city about two hours away by train. There we were joined by Fulbright colleague Ellen and spent the next 24 hours eating, drinking, and exploring this beautiful, must-see city.