- Playwright: J.T. Rodgers
- Title: Oslo
- Genre: political play
- Reading time: 2,5 hours
- Opening night: June 16 2016 – Newhouse Theatre, NYC
- Trivia: Tony Award for Best Play 2017
- Epilogue: “…out of the crooked timber of humanity
- …no straight thing was ever made.” (I. Kant)
- Wikipedia link: J.T. Rodgers
- List of Challenges 2020
- Monthly reading plan
- Timeline: April 1992 – September 1993
- Structure: 3 acts
- Oslo tells the story behind the peace process that led
- to Israeli PM Rabin and PLO chairman Arafat
- shaking hands in Washington, with President Bill Clinton.
- Characters are Norwegian (9) , Israeli (5) and Palestinians (2).
- This moment was brokered by Terje Rød-Larsen
- …the central character of the play.
- He was a Norwegian diplomat who arranged secret meetings
- …between Israeli and Palestinian representatives.
- I thought this would be a great play to read
- on the heels of Trumps Peace Plan for
- the Middle East dd. 28 January 2020.
- This is a blueprint for a two-state solution
- …it was dead on arrival.
- At least the play OSLO….shows that negations are
- …needed before a peace can be brokered.
- Trump’s plan is a Netenyahu’s wish-list.
- Strong point: serious political ideas within the form of a thriller
- Strong point: familiar narrative from a surprising angle. (Norwegian)
- Weak point: not a play you can just dive into!
- I had to map out each act (scenes, characters)
- so I could at least follow the plot.
- Act 1 –> scenes change swiftly 18 x !
- Pacing: is also very smooth.
- Trivia: J.T. Rodgers read Noel Coward’s comedic plays
- …to get a sense of pacing for a political play!
- Storyline: entertaining though slightly predictable as
- we go towards the ending
- …the iconic shaking of hands Rabin, Arafat, Clinton.
- Strong point: its more about the journey of it all
- …the secrecy, the deal-making.
- This was a difficult play to read.
- But the play has been inundated with awards
- …so J.T. Rodgers must be doing something right!
- I included a quick scan of the play to
- …help you if you ever read it.
Characters: Act 1:
- 4 minor (Marianne, Holst (married), Toril and Finn domestic staff at castle)
- 7 major (Mona, Larsen (married) (PL) Qurie and Afour – (ISR) Hirschfeld, Pundak and Beilin
- Mona “breaks the 4th wall” 16 x – speaks directly to audience
Setting: Act 1
- Larsen flat (home of couple Mona and Terje Larsen (5 scenes)
- Borregaard Castle (entrance hall reception, drawing and negation rooms) (5 scenes)
- Hotel Suite London (3 scenes)
- University lecture hall (1 scene)
- UN Club Gaza Strip (1 scene)
Characters: Act 2
- 4 minor ( Holst,Toril, Finn, Am diplomat, Trond and Thor (intel police)
- 8 major (Mona, Larsen, (PL) Qurie and Afour – (ISR) Hirschfeld, Pundak, Savir, Beilin
- Mona “breaks the 4th wall” 6 x
Setting: Act 2
- Borregaard Castle (castle grounds, reception, drawing, cocktail, negation rooms) (8 scenes)
- Oslo (Foreign Ministry, Fornebu Airport (2 scenes)
- Larsen flat (1 scene)
- Frogner Park near HotelBristol London (1 scene)
Characters: Act 3
- 9 minor (Marianne, Holst (married), Finn, Thor, Trond
- Swedish hostess, German man, German woman, Am. diplomat
- 10 major (Mona, Larsen (central characters)
- (PL) Qurie and Asfour
- (ISR) Hirschfeld, Pundak, Beilin Savir, Singer – Peres
- Mona “breaks the 4th wall” 13 x
Setting: Act 3
- Larsen flat (1 scene)
- Jerusalem (foreign ministry) (1 scene)
- Oslo (foreign ministry (1 scene)
- Stockholm (Swedish Guest House) (1 scene)
- Borregaard Castle (reception, drawing, negation rooms) (6 scenes)
- White House Rose Garden (1 scene)
- Center stage empty (last scene) only 2 main characters Mona and Larsen
Playwright J T. Rodgers