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Published:September 9th, 2005 12:29 EST
Talking with Tom's Gayo

Talking with Tom's Gayo

By Alex Alex

Producing and co-versionist with Nieves G"mez, Tom"s Gayo has dared to carry to set  Tirano Banderas " by Ram"n Mar"a del Valle-Incl"n, a work of disturbing actuality that has carried for lands of south America and now travels through Spain with Héctor Colomé, Vladimir Cruz, Nuria Gallardo and Tom"s Gayo himself, in the main roles.  A theatre masterpiece that has received the so expensive applauses from columnists in the third version that is carried out in Spain and one of the more likely to the associations of experts of the Spanish author that watch closely the orthodoxy of these adaptations. 
For the ones that do not  know who Gayo is, we could introduce him saying that with this piece he commemorates his fifteen years as producer, path initiated in 1988 with titles like Among darkness ", by Pedro Almod"var, ` "The importance to be called Ernesto ", by Oscar Wilde, Private Lives ", by Noel Coward or the most recent one, The Ridiculous one ", by Rafael Alberti, also represented with great success in Latin America. 
  • Which it is the difficulty to do a text so acquaintance of a so difficult author? 
The novel is marvelous and expert say that is the masterpiece of the Spanish literature. I consider it one of the most important of the Spanish literature. The first enormous difficulty has been the version, because one must condense the novel scarcely in two hours, it is almost impossible to follow all the plots, one must respect the author, because we can not amend one of the greatest writers in our country.  The unique thing that can be done is an adaptation with their own words, that is what have done.  It has not born a genius as Valle, a visionar and one of the maximum, if not the maximum father of the Spanish tongue. The first great difficulty has been to adapt the novel. In that sense there are some Valle-Incl"n`s associations that pursue us from city to city, and follow our tour in America. They have liked the version and I believe that is one of the few versions that have been done, because this is the third represented in Spain. I believe that it was done in 1966, in the Teatro Español, in Enrique Llovet`s version and directed by Tamayo. And then in 1992 it was done by Lluis Pasqual, responsible of the version and direction himself. 
  • You have tried to recreate the Caribbean... 
Yes, the Caribbean is there, among others things, because the director is Colombian, and the Caribbean land, although she is nationalized Spaniard and she knew very well that type of colors, of smells and in that she has done emphasis, basically for not fallinf into "tremendism" of what is the great tragedy of the tyrant, something very habitual in the performances on Valle-Incl"n. I have the sensation, that directors tend to mount Valle-Incl"n in a way very ostentatious Valle. I believe that the more important in  Valle is the word itself.  It is very difficult to say, not to understand, maybe and this causes say the word, that remain very clear and then adding great sets, which doesn` cooperate the function to be understood. 
  • Your version has more light... 
Of course, by the recreation of ambients, and the wardrobe of Javier Artiñano, that I believe is the person that more Goyas has in this country.  Fernando Yuste has done a fantastic light and Nieves G"mez as register has impacted in that. Then there was a difficulty added that is that roles in this novel speak with some kind of accent. There are three types of roles: the native, the "criollo" and then Spanish people.  We have sought a neuter form to speak that we expect permirs to understand anyone, that is what more worries me. 
  • How is that "Tierra Firme" Republic? 
It is an imaginary city that is supposed to be Mexico or something seemed to some part of this country, because Valle lived in Mexico for some years. It is a republic by the sea, Caribbean "we want to understand- and is one of the so many republics submitted to a tyranny, but the tyranny only is not the own tyrant, but the foreigners as well, worried by their own business and also the natives that are neither so good.  The best thing in Valle is that he does not save anyone, there is not good neither bad. 
  • It is a fight of men against men... 
Of men against men and by the power, each one in its plot: everyone fight for recoverinf its own and the tyrant by the absolutism and the dictatorial power. All this with a lot of sense of humor. It has a lot of humor and I believe that is well for the people that don`t desire to read the novel that is exhaustive and has a difficult language to understand. We have tried with the interpretation and it put in scene that is very filmic, very simple to understand and I believe that in general lines we have reached out.
  • The characters are well drawn? 
It is a choir.  Tirano Banderas is called and there is a tyrant, but we are ten actors and some double roles. There It is a private business and we could not assume a larger company, and by the other hand I don`t believe that was necessary. The tyrant has his importance, of course, but also my role, Nachito Veguillas, or the three women that interprets Nuria Gallardo.  All the characters are important. 
  • Tirano Banderas is a racial dictator... 
Héctor Colomé is from Argentina and he has played with the southern accents according to the director to find a special accent that can represent from Per"n to the last, that sound like any dictator form South America.  That does not mean that the role of the dictators doesn`t exist recently. It can be read in this book any dictator: a person that likes the blood, likes to order, with an obsessive personality, although he is a special father too, according to the novel.  He treats very bad everyone, except his daughter, where he shows his human side. 
  • Why treat the history of a tyrant exactly at this time? 
It was not for political opportunism. I wanted to celebrate the 15 years of my career as producer with a great format and because the American tour of El adefesio " was very successful and the ambassador of Mexico asked us for an spectacle for the next year.  I did not know what would happen unfortunately on 11-M, neither what has happened after. But it is not necessary to look at Spain, the connection Bush-Tyrant is perfect. The unique thing is that he drinks and Tirano Banderas only likes lemonade. 
  • How was the actoral work? 
It is said that Valle preferred to show, not "Stanivlaskian" interpretations to be identified totally with the role, that is to say, this means that the actor is doing its role and that is what we have been working.  Each one come many-sided: a Colombian director, an Argentine protagonist, another Cuban as Vladimir Cruz. It has been sought to show, that not to feel. 
  • Which has been the greater difficulty?
That the history could be understood, because is a main highway that has many secondary routes without losing the main plot.  There will be someone who miss things, but I believe that we have get the spirit.
  • How you have worked? 
We have worked on spaces. In the novel there are many, that in theatre is extremely difficult to shoe. We set the tyrant`s palace, interrogations` room, a jail, a house of procuring, natives houses..., everything should be impossible.  We have worked too with the light of the spaces and elements that could symbolize something and then with the wardrobe and the actors` characterization.