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Performance program for The Norwegian Theatre's production Peer Gynt (2018) pdf September 9, 2018 Download

Peer Gynt

Peer Gynt (2018) was a theatre production by The Norwegian Theatre, based on the play by Henrik Ibsen, in a translation into the New Norwegian by Jon Fosse. The production was performed at the theatre's main stage.

Erik Ulfsby directed it.

Toralv Maurstad, aged 91 at the time of the opening, played the role of the elder Peer Gynt. Jan Grønli, Geir Kvarme, Paul-Ottar Haga, Pål Christian Eggen, Karl-Vidar Lende, Niklas Gundersen and Jonas F. Urstad played younger versions of Peer Gynt.

A digital version of Peer Gynt was released by The Norwegian Theatre during the Corona crisis of 2020. You may read more about that here.


(Objekt ID 84694)
Object type Production
Premiere September 9, 2018
Produced by The Norwegian Theatre
Based on Peer Gynt by Henrik Ibsen
Audience Adults
Audience size 35630
Number of events 53
Language Norwegian Nynorsk
Keywords Theatre, Drama
Running period September 9, 2018  
Website Det Norske Teatret

At the webpage of The Norwegian Theatre the following, among other things, is written about Peer Gynt (2018):

"Peer Gynt has reached the end of the road. He is battered, worn down and tired. His journey through life has given him many highs, and even more downs. He has been mighty and celebrated himself around the world. Met people and creatures, lived a self-centred, vital and involving life.

Peer wanted to go away - away from Norway, but mostly away from himself. He wanted to reinvent himself, blossom, become rich, he wanted to consume and to enjoy. But towards the end of his life he returns home, deeply marked by the experiences he has made. He must now defend his life. Who was he really? Will his life withstand the meeting with the Button Moulder?

In this version of Ibsen's masterpiece, Toralv Maurstad gives life to the old Peer. In his last and final confrontation, this Peer looks back on the life he has led. From the darkroom of remembrance, the audience is brought into a stream of memories. A long series of different memories shows up. It is as if Peer turns the leafs of his own photo album back and forth, and a whole life is unfolded and developed. Out of his memory, stories, meetings and recognitions rise, played out by a large ensemble of 14 actors.

Maurstad about Peer

Toralv Maurstad looks forward to engaging with his old acquaintance. The 91-year-old has played Peer Gynt as a young man and a man in midlife. – I now have the experience that makes it possible to play the old Peer in a way I have never managed before, he says of the role. – I don't see Peer as a liar. He has a far too luscious, untamed imagination. He brawls and invents, with charm and wit. His flaw is that he abuses his imagination to impress and to gain attention - from the ladies, too. It will be interesting to confront such a life. I think he must accept being melted into the mass with other people. The way we all may have to be prepared for it.

About the choice of leading man

Erik Ulfsby, who directs, wished to use the final-act meeting between Peer Gynt and the Button Moulder as the pivotal point. Peer wonders what was the meaning of it all, and gets the answer that he should sense it. Among those who don't, the devil finds his easiest prey. Standing with one leg above the void, Peer has to throw light on his own actions.

– I heard Toralv, rejoicing in the victory of his Hedda Award last year, say that he wanted to perform onstage until they had to carry him off the board. It struck me that this was an incredibly Gyntian line, says Erik Ulfsby in regard to the choice of Maurstad in the role of Peer Gynt. – In addition, Toralv in many ways carries the Norwegian Peer Gynt tradition on his shoulders. Just like his father did. He can now meet the text with all the wisdom and all the joy and pain a long life brings with it, Ulfsby says."


The Norwegian Theatre, 26.03.2018, www.detnorsketeatret.no, https://www.detnorsketeatret.no/framsyningar/peer-gynt/

The National Library of Norway, performance program transferred to Sceneweb, 23.10.2019

Performance dates
September 9, 2018Hovudscenen, The Norwegian Theatre Opening night