Mountain Hotel and Audience

BY VACLAV HAVEL
29 October 2008 — 6 December 2008

Written in the 1970s, the Mountain Hotel houses a motley group of guests striving to live with each other. Among them a blocked writer, a sentimental Russian Count, the card playing Dlask, the football playing Tetz, and Vilem Pechar sunbathing on the grass. There's Rachel whose life appears to revolve around knitting and sex, Vilem's wife ministering to his infidelities and Liza coping with the count. Two of the guests look on in silence. The hotel staff has problems too; and five of the men are called Joseph. Mountain Hotel is directed by Sam Walters.

In Audience, (directed by Geoffrey Beevers) the first of the Vanek plays, Vanek is working in a brewery (as Havel did) and finds himself summoned to meet his boss. Might there be a better job on offer, where he will not have to handle heavy barrels of beer? But might there be a catch? Who exactly is going to be doing who a favour? And just how much beer is Vanek expected to consume before he finds out?

Photos by Robert Day