Five one-act plays about six “princesses”, whose deaths are well known from fairy-tales, music, literature and media, are called on to speak. Snow White strays through the forest “in search of truth,” soon wishing she had never seen the wood for the trees;
she is an easy target for the hunter who murders her there. Sleeping Beauty is woken by Mr. Right’s kiss but quickly freezes up when faced with their imminent mating. In Rosamunde “a princess speaks from her home far away in the wilderness, (…) who indulges in delusions of grandeur and in her own writing (…) and who somehow manages to survive after all.” (Elfriede Jelinek). Jackie on the other hand, a glamorous ex-First Lady, drags herself with a whole host of corpses onto the stage, where she sardonically reviews her life and that of the famous, dead Marilyn, her husband’s lover. In The Wall two female icons of writing, Ingeborg (Bachmann) and Sylvia (Plath) celebrate a ritual slaughtering. A long way from conventional stories of victims and perpetrators, Jelinek’s Princess Dramas are a sort of power and mentality history of the sexes, written with an unflinching gaze, unorthodox, bitterly serious and disarmingly self-mocking.
The play has been translated into:
Bulgarian; Czech; Danish Dutch; English: Princess Dramas; French: Drames de princesses; Italian; Japanese; Polish; Slovenian; Swedish; Chinese
Elfriede Jelinek, who was born in 1946 in Mürzzuschlag/Steiermark and grew up in Vienna, now lives in Vienna and Munich. She has received numerous awards for her literary works, which include not only novels but also plays, poetry, essays,...Plays by Elfriede Jelinek