These are us

A talk with Judit Rezes and Győző Szabó

They made a special trailer for their performance Loveshake on 29th May in Gödöllő themselves: ‘Come! Come! We look forward to meeting you! Judit and Győző’ – and it is really difficult to resist this kind invitation. Judit Rezes and Győző Szabó, who are two artists, living together privately as well, created an unusual musical-dance play with the subtitle ‘Life shakes’. They have already performed at many places since the premiere in January with their ’shaking’ performance mixing reality with fiction, which is sometimes funny, sometimes serious, sometimes prose, sometimes dance, talking about the great secret: what keeps a man and a woman together for years and decades. We were really curious how the idea was born.

Why didn’t you want a written text? I mean a ready-made play?

Judit Rezes: After the TV programme ‘Saturday Night Fever’, we wanted a two-player evening, where we can sing, dance and there are songs that we love to sing. We were brainstorming and searching a lot with the dramaturge Éva Enyedi to find songs for our stories and we realised how much our stories are similar to hers and anyone else’s. The audience can feel that they are the main characters and everything is their problem.

Győző Szabó: We wanted a written play but we could not find one. We were searching, selecting but we didn’t want another e.g. ‘Scenes from a Marriage’. We selected a lot of music, special songs, world hits with my actor-director friend Vilmos Vajdai, we filtered them and finally had a top twenty list. There are songs where the lyrics were retranslated or rewritten by Zsolt Máthé, who represents a serious standard in the Hungarian lyric writing, in order to talk about us, about what has happened to us. Slowly-slowly our story was born. It seems to be funny on the surface but it is rather entertaining and thought-provoking.  

Why are those performances popular that are about famous people?

Judit Rezes: The tabloid media made people used to looking into other people’s lives and they love it. Our performance seems to follow this direction but it is a different genre. It is a bit about us, of course but mainly about relationships, about men and women in the language of theatre.  There are easily recognisable situations with artistic values in it, I can see that the viewers and we have a common denominator.

Győző Szabó: These atelier stories, peeking behind the curtain things are always exciting. I would also like to sneak a glance into a household or a flat; I am also interested in other people’s lives. Especially if these people are stars, well-known people. It is not true though that there are no real stars in Hungary.

How much is this theatre yours? Can anyone else play that?

Judit Rezes: I hope it is only ours and works only with us. This is us.

Győző Szabó: No one else can play it!

If you could grade from one to five, how much this performance is your lives, from not at all until absolutely, what grade would you give?

Judit Rezes: Five.

Győző Szabó: Five.

Have you performed it at many places since the premiere in January?

Judit Rezes: Yes, both in Budapest and in the countryside, too…

Győző Szabó: We would like to perform it at many places. I was really delighted that we played in Nyíregyháza on my father’s birthday at the beginning of April, so they could come over from the nearby Nyírbátor, too. They did not get scared of what they saw. The performance started to live its own, independent live anyway.