Lorca’s ‘Play Without a Title’ Gets a New Title, and Two New Acts

A single of Federico García Lorca’s plays is acquiring a new ending. As odd at that may well sound for the Blood Wedding playwright/poet who died in 1936, it is just been created attainable by (and fortunately, the end of this sentence isn’t: “a Lorca algorithm”) another Spanish playwright/poet named Alberto Conejero.

The Guardian reports that the writer has given a play Lorca started but in no way finished (ultimately titled Play Without having a Title in its unfinished form) two additional acts, as well as an additional title, The Dream of Life (El sueño de la vida). Conejero’s version will be published in 2018, and performances will come soon after its publication.

Conejero described The Dream of Life:

It is a play about the role of theatre when confronted with a social emergency but it is also about the necessity of fiction and poetry in a planet in ruins…[It] fulfils the function of theatre in times of social crisis and amid the rise of fanaticism, and I really feel it’s totally necessary now.

Lorca was a staunch socialist, and was believed to have been assassinated by a appropriate wing militia who, per the Guardian, “were systematically wiping out suspected leftwingers” at the starting of the Spanish Civil War, as fascism overtook the nation. Revisiting a play whose completion was violently halted by rising Fascism indeed appears relevant.

Lorca had originally intended it to be a three-act piece, and it’s thought that he began to create it in 1935, but was murdered prior to he could full it. What small there was of the play remained unpublished until 1978, and un-performed till 1989.

What was currently there in Lorca’s writing was a meta-theatrical, tragicomic, early avant-garde piece, which takes location in a theatre exactly where actors are performing A Midsummer Night’s Dream (which also, incidentally, contains an early example of meta-theater).

Apparently, for the project commissioned by Madrid’s regional government, the playwright has followed plans Lorca himself had for the play, but also eschews saying he “finished” it, emphasizing rather that “it’s more about a dialogue with Federico’s voice and carrying on with that impulse.” He says he hasn’t “touched a comma of [Lorca’s] act.” Anticipating controversy, he said, “Anyone who wants to uncover Play Without a Title as it was left can constantly do so. I haven’t painted more than the canvas.”

Flavorwire