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Post-Catharsis, the distant fate of Tragedy, by Panayiotis Neufelt

Post-Catharsis is the mirroring of a purification process, the acceptance or the understanding of an action or a result which has previously occurred, but spontaneously it has been revealed within the subconscious mind of a person (subject-character), affecting his/hers behaviour now. It can be a relapsing period or action and it could be revealed as a minor enactment or expression of the subject, intervening cathartically in his/hers present life (which can be indicative and metaphorical at the same time). The tragic moment is non existent at present or it is distant. The Post-Catharsis process ends with acceptance and inclusion of something or someone.

This term, technique and theorem introduced by Panayiotis Neufelt was the theoretical pilar of the direction of the play (details on programme and notes) MayFly by Chris Christophis-Pittas at the Old Vic Theatre London, 2000.

The play is set on a Mediterranean Island surrounded by a company of seals. MayFly is the story of an encounter between two men and a woman, ‘The One’, the narrator ‘Dolly’s’ lover, and ‘The Other One’ Dolly’s stepbrother. Both Dolly and her stepbrother were born on this Island, but Dolly left at an early age hustled away to France by her mother after her father’s sudden death. Father, a photographer whose secret life included a parade of beautiful women and lovers who doubled as his photographic subjects, was murdered perhaps by Dolly, or Dolly and her mother, or Dolly, her mother and the stepbrother. The struggle for guilt carries over into the erotic battles and confused desires that link these three characters together. Christophis’s May Fly is set against a sparse, seemingly undisturbed world of sun and sea. Its dormant clarity is a primeval landscape that is universally and collectively suggestive. The play is an observation of the present, which remains in a static way blind. Its angles of perception are traumas originating in the past, which are fed with luck of poetic resolutions. The story is a reference to the Odyssey of human relationships. It is a drama set in motion by old wounds, old secrets, memories, continuity and self-invention. Death is a central issue opening the way to Catharsis through unpredictable tensions, which are related to love, guilt and traumas. The play revolves around communication of secrets, visions, and fantasies but most importantly around guilt for feelings of pleasure, delight, sensuality and hedonism.