About the Play
“The play was created and first presented during a period of political and cultural upheaval and radicalization throughout the Americas during the mid-20th century. It received wide international attention and reached a larger audience than any other Latin American work. An international jury awarded the play the prestigious “Casa de las Americas” award in 1966. In 1970 it was produced by the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford-on-Avon under the title “The Criminals” and was published in the Drama Review.
The Night of the Assassins is about three siblings caught in a stifling established order playing a macabre game: killing their parents. The parents are a metaphor for a social order that suffocates them and the parricide vicariously destroys that order. Playing at crime is the infantile way the characters challenge the historical limits of violence and power.
Combining elements of the Theatre of the Absurd and “imaginative realism,” Triana creates a dynamic mix of detective story with family and courtroom drama. Using farce and black humour, the work gains an extraordinary dramatic texture. From realism to the theatrical, from the everyday to the unexpected, the action is full of humour – black humour to be sure, but humour nonetheless.
This Pacun Peras production of The Night of the Assassins explores, through the aesthetic ideas of Meyerhold’s “conscious theatricality,” an existential reinterpretation of the work from the perspective of the 21st century.