Theatre, 1995

Yvonne, Princess of Burgundy

Bergman's zestful Yvonne was received as yet another artistic triumph for director, set designer, and ensemble.

'Yvonne is not a "large" Bergman staging - it has found its soul on the small stage, functioning more through details and subtle devices than through grand gestures, scenery and tableaux.'
Lars Ring, Svenska Dagbladet

About the production

Several reviewers felt that Bergman saw more human depth in the story of Yvonne and the prince than Gombrowicz' text suggested. Much critical attention focussed on the theatricality of the performance and on Bergman's rapport with the actors.

It is obvious that Ingmar Bergman does something remarkable with the actors, releases their love to work and their confidence. It is an art that has to do with charisma, inspiration, and experience, and it can probably not be written down in a book of rules for future directors. But there is no better theatre being practiced in Sweden, perhaps not the world.

At the beginning of The Royal Dramatic Theatre's 1995-96 season, Bergman announced his decision to retire. Several critics expressed their doubts. One reviewer who had belonged to the 'anti-Bergman' group of the '60s concluded, 'This superb creativity and artistic power that he shows in Yvonne, Princess of Burgundy cannot simply be shut off. It would appear like a pure act of revenge against those of us who have not always been appreciative and impressed enough. We shall miss him forever'.

Sources

  • The Ingmar Bergman Archives.
  • Birgitta Steene, Ingmar Bergman: A Reference Guide, (Amsterdam University Press, 2005).

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