Review: Mirbeau's "The Interview" Performed by 7A English Edu UPI 2015

First of all, as I promised to whoever visited my post entitled Nonton The Interview: Drama Gambaran Media Massa Zaman Now that I am going to make a review about the drama performance we watched, I finally did it.

I know it took months since I cannot find any full video-recording of the performance, and unfortunately I found out that the crew do not upload it on YouTube. Well, it is a bit sad since I really want to make a review about it, as what I did last year too on the A Play Review of ‘The Other Half’ Drama Performed by 7A EnglishEducation UPI 2014. But, I am also happy since I found good quality pictures taken from the performance on English Education Department UPI’s website.
Well, while I am hoping that one day the crew will upload it on YouTube, here it is…

A Short Review of “The Interview” Drama Performance by 7A English Edu Department of UPI 2015
The interview is a play written by a French journalist, Octave Mirbeau, who worked as a ghostwriter before began to publish his writings under his own name. He was also a playwright -of course-, an art critic, travel writer, pamphleteer, and a novelist. Mirbeau achieved fame in Europe and a great success among the public.
The script is published on Mirbeau’s work entitled “Farces etmoralites” in 1940. Same as The Other Half by Sickles I wrote, The Interview is a one act plays too. It is a collection of the plays in comedy genre written by Mirbeau, yet it is a powerful, thought provoking play depicting a singular account of The Holocaust. There are a lot of history records on the internet talking about how Mirbeau mocks the manipulation in The Press by creating this play.
“The Interview” play have been performed in some countries, as On 11th December, 2018, after three months of preparation and under the guidance of Nicke Yunita Moecharram, a “The Interview” play was carried out by 7A English Edu Department of UPI-Bandung at Auditorium A of Fakultas Pendidikan Seni dan Desain(FPSD).

The play captured the power of The Press in manipulating and stirred the truth in the 1890 era. Fueled by pitchers of beers, ‘The Interview’ shared a Post-War view with a comic twist. It tells a story of a bartender who was ‘accused’ by two interviewer from The Movement of doing a fault he doesn’t even know. The Movement is a great and powerful press on that era.

The Performance 

The Bar 

At the very first time of entering the auditorium, I thought that the stage was a setting of dining room or restaurant, etc. since all I saw was a table surrounded by couple of wooden chairs. Actually on the entering gate, we were given a piece of paper with a synopsis written on it, which of course explains where the play takes place, but I was too busy and the room was too dark. There was only one lamp lighting up the main stage and it was dimmed. 
First scene started and I realized that it was a set of a bar when another lamps lighted up the cupboard and the bartender's table full of bottles of wine and beer. The first scene shows a bartender, named Chapuzot, who was living a casual life as a bartender at his bar in Montmartre. Customers came and went, and he listened to their stories. This can be seen from his conversation with a woman-his customer, who ask for help for her family who had sick. The woman left, and Chapuzot started to wipe and cleaned the bottles, the glasses, the table, the chairs, the mantel hangers, everything he could clean out.
Yet, he was about to get a disturbance as two seemingly intelligent journalist barged into his bar to perform the most absurd interview towards him. He was being asked of so many questions and stories about him that he is forced to believe.

Scene two started when the two men who seemed to know Chapuzot very well but with a very different background and story arrived in his bar. Chapuzot did know them at first, the two men did not even introduce themselves. Chapuzot thought they were inspectors of vaccination since they asked him to show his arms. But when they started to take pictures of him, he assumed they were photographers. When the men measure his body, he thought they were tailors. Finally, they introduced that they are interviewers from The Movement.
Chapuzot (middle) and the interviewers
source: English FPBS
The interviewers investigated him under the accusation that Chapuzot was reported to be a wine merchant who have lived for a long time on bad terms with his wife. However, the truth is Chapuzot isn’t married, yet. The rest of the play is filled with comedy, pitchers of beers and a bit of tense since the interviewers enforced that he lives on bad terms with his mistress.

The actors played all the lines well and the performance was very amusing. Jokes and sarcasm thrown, audiences laughed. I really enjoyed the show. The choice of costumes are fine since I read that the role of the race in this play are neutral, so there is no specialization. Each actor wear costume related to their characters. On the real script, there is only one interviewer, but in this performance, they made it two. Maybe because the script is too long to be memorized by-just-one person. I do not find any deviations from the play that has performed. It is just a bit out of the characters drawn when a poster fell out on the floor, but the bartender did nothing. It is far from the characters given on the first scene where Chapuzot was so busy wiping all the bottles, glasses, and cleaning up his bar. Nevertheless, it is not the main passage of the play so it does not really matters.

Overall, the performance is a success play. The audience were impressed and in an approximately one hour of performance, the play left a deep impression of The Press back in 19th century and also now. 
For the last, I would like to cite some lines I like, said by, the interviewers. The lines that describe how powerful The Press is in our daily life.

The press is a powerful force, Chapuzot. You cannot deceive the press. And I am the Press, Chapuzot. Twelve Million Readers!

The press is the great modern force…. The great educator…. The universal consciousness… She denounces... judges and condemns!

The Press, Chapuzot! Stands alone… above all else… police, justice, et cetera. It rewards, punishes, forgives! Depending on the price that one pays. The press is everything.

Works Cited & References:
The Interview by Octave Mirbeau, script translated by Walter Wykes.