Six characters, six chess pieces: King, Queen, Bishop, Rook, Knight, and Pawn. In the final critical stage of the game, an unseen opponent is closing in. It is a world of lost characters, without past or future; the only goal is survival. The illusion that war can be won is dominant. The personification of the chess pieces highlights the grotesque elements of war. The bishop’s job is to analyze the state of play and bring information to the king. Serving as the victimized messenger, he suggests resignation as a realistic option, yielding to fate, giving up and accepting the loss, and thus, regaining life. The bishop is also the unwilling prophet, telling of the divine revelation announcing the abandonment of the Divine Spirit and the approaching destruction of the Temple.
The language is in freeform, which allows the actors to exaggerate their actions and intentions without depending on the internal logic of language. It liberates their emotions and the internal intensity of their words. This special acting technique highlights the tension between the mechanical and the human, and between freedom of choice and its absence.
Noam Ben Azar is a graduate of Beit Zvi School of the Performing Arts. He was an original member of Rina Yerushalmi’s Itim Ensemble (Israel Prize winner) that has performed with great success at over twenty important theater festivals worldwide. He played several prominent roles in the ensemble productions of Hamlet, Woyzeck, Romeo and Juliet, Three Sisters, The Bible Project (Parts I and II), End of the Game, among others. In 2016 he was names Actor of the Yeara at the Israeli Fringe Awards for his portrayal of the suitor in Peer Gynt, directed by Yerushalmi; in 2013 he was nominated for that category for the role of the doctor in the ensemble’s performance of The King is About to Die. Noam has directed many fringe plays, including Absalom, Spoonful of Ocean, The Thousand and Sixth Song, Macbeth, The Game, and others. He teaches acting at the School of Performing Arts of Kibbutzim College of Education, Technology and the Arts, as well as at the Multi-Disciplinary Department of the Rubin Academy of Music and Dance in Jerusalem. Over the years, Noam has developed a unique method that uses text with full body involvement, thus creating a close link between speech, movement, and thought.
Physical Theatre Social and Political Issues