The Bridge

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The heroine is a beautiful, bright and witty woman, but never in her life has she experienced love. And she is running out of time. Due to a serious heart condition she has spent more than enough time at hospitals, and it was there where she saw him. He was a young doctor, working there. Their eyes met. She didn’t know his name; they never spoke. One morning the girl woke up, feeling different. Instead of going to work she took a taxi and drove to the hospital. She stuck a small note under the door of his office, asking him out on a date. The play starts with the woman sitting on the bridge, waiting for the man. The man comes. Is it a hazard or destiny, who knows, for he hasn’t received her letter. They are not looking at each other. The woman talks a lot – mainly about herself. The man doesn’t say much; he’s just listening. But finally he says it. The thing the woman has been waiting to hear all her life.

Interwoven to the tale of the man and the woman is a counter-story, at times a bizarre party of middle-aged people, including heroine’s father. When the action with the two young lovers is sincere, radiant and tender like a violin solo, the elder characters resemble more an out-of-tune jazz band. Those openly grotesque personages are similar in one thing: they are all incapable of love. All six have died in an explosion and now they find themselves stuck in a mid-way to the other side, incapable of moving on. We will never find out, whether their efforts to escape have succeeded or whether they will forever remain the victims of their own egocentricity. Knowing that the woman will die, and hoping for a change – or for salvation – they are waiting for her arrival, but in vain, since she is not coming. She has learned to love.

The characters: Leele – a woman in her late twenties; Sten – a man, about the same age; Ebe, Humee, Maara – middle-aged women; Knaut, Larek, Armer, Remis – middle-aged men.

 

Extract from the play:

EBE: Let’s play. Who’s playing? All of us? What are your rules?

ARMER: You can’t play our game.

EBE: I learn new things fast and accurately. What’s the principle?

(Pause.)

KNAUT: You can’t play our game.

EBE: Why?

HUMEE: Because we’re still learning it ourselves.

EBE: What’s the principle?

LAREK: The principle, the principle!

ARMER: Do you belong here, Ebe?

EBE: I don’t know.

ARMER: Right. That’s what I wanted to know.

KNAUT: Look, all of us… How should I put it…

MAARA: Just tell it as it is.

KNAUT: All of us… we don’t know much about love.

ARMER: Something like that.

KNAUT: Of course we have all loved in our own way…

ARMER: Something like that.

KNAUT: …but…

LAREK: But, but!

KNAUT: We never said it to anyone.

ARMER: Something like that.

KNAUT: And we don’t know if anyone has ever loved any of us. We don’t know. (Pause.) We don’t know. That’s the way it turned out. We didn’t leave…

ARMER: …happy, content.

KNAUT: …Something like that. But we all had a chance. Back there. We couldn’t come around to saying it.

ARMER: We couldn’t come around to saying it.

LAREK: When we should have.

MAARA: When we still had the chance.

HUMEE: Had the chance.

REMIS: I’ve said it. (Pause.) Many times. Many times. Too many. I’ve always lied. But…

EBE: But?

REMIS: I had the chance to tell the truth.

EBE: I know.

REMIS: You know.

EBE: I do belong here. Sadly. I had a chance. I had. What about your daughter Leele?

KNAUT: She’ll come right after dawn.

EBE: Here?

MAARA: She still has a chance.

KNAUT: Oh well. We all did.

EBE: And your game?

KNAUT: I thought…

ARMER: We thought.

KNAUT: We thought that perhaps… if we tried, again… then perhaps… here… perhaps.

EBE: I want to play too. Let me play. Please!

ARMER: Here we go.

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