Work by Vaiva Grainytė, Lina Lapelytė, Rugilė Barzdžiukaitė
Produced by Operomanija
The opera focuses on the inner lives of cashiers in a shopping centre: showing what lies behind their mechanical ‘Good afternoon!’, ‘Thank you!’, ‘Have a good day!’ and fake smiles. It transforms the faceless, robot-like shop workers found in everyday life into unique and lively characters, whereas their secret thoughts and biographies turn into short, personal dramas. The characters of diverse sales clerks, embodying universal archetypes, convey the predominant social landscape. The libretto represents a revealing mosaic of spoken, literary language and documentary.
The atmosphere of the supermarket is established through the glimmering and buzzing installation of daylight lamps and environmental sounds, connecting the audience to the stage and the 10 cashiers. The set itself is very minimalist. Real goods – the recognizable décor of a shopping centre – exist only in acoustic and verbal form.
The monotonous beep heard each time an item is scanned is a key sound throughout the whole opera. It may be louder or quieter, but it is always present. Songs that accompany the beeping are as monotonous as the very process of shopping and selling. Instead of becoming the main point of the opera, the music serves the thoughts of the cashiers – it facilitates their voice.
To avoid any moral or judgemental suggestion, critical attitude towards capitalism is expressed through humour, paradox, irony and poetry. The mosaic of different destinies transforms into a single poem suggesting the pleasure of consumption.
In 2013, Have a Good Day! was selected by an International Theatre Institute (ITI) jury for a presentation at the finals of the worldwide competition Music Theatre NOW (Biennial for Performing Arts, Jönköping, Sweden), where the work was awarded the Globe Teana-Theatre Observation prize. In 2014, Have a Good Day! was awarded the Golden Stage Cross prize for the best Lithuanian Authors’ Performance and has also garnered two prizes at the Baltic Theatre Festival. In 2015, the opera was awarded the Main Prize of the Fast Forward festival in Braunschweig (Germany). The performance has been presented at diverse music, theatre and opera festivals in Lithuania, United States, China, Russia, Latvia, Estonia, France, Germany, Switzerland, Ukraine, Portugal, The Netherlands, Italy and more than 30 important theatre festivals and venues like Teatro Argentina (Rome), Munich Kammerspiele, Golden Mask (Moscow), Maria Matos (Lisbon), Shanghai Dramatic Arts Centre, Operadagen Rotterdam and many others. The opera was also broadcasted on Lithuanian National Radio and BBC Radio 3.
February 6, 2022 – Lessingtage Festival, Thalia Theater, Germany
February 5, 2022 – Lessingtage Festival, Thalia Theater, Germany
October 29, 2021 – Arts Printing House, Lithuania
October 28, 2021 – Arts Printing House, Lithuania
August 1, 2021, 8:00pm – Pažaislis Music Festival, Kaunas State Music Theatre, Lithuania
August 1, 2021, 6:00pm – Pažaislis Music Festival, Kaunas State Music Theatre, Lithuania
May 11, 2021 – Uijeongbu Music Theatre Festival, South Korea (cancelled)
May 12, 2021 – Uijeongbu Music Theatre Festival, South Korea (cancelled)
May 2, 2021, 8:30pm – Heidelberger Stückemarkt Digital, Germany
Concept by Vaiva Grainytė, Lina Lapelytė, Rugilė Barzdžiukaitė
Librettist Vaiva Grainytė
Composer and music director Lina Lapelytė
Director and set designer Rugilė Barzdžiukaitė
Lighting designer Eugenijus Sabaliauskas
Costume designer Daiva Samajauskaitė
Sound engineer Arūnas Zujus
Cashiers: Indrė Anankaitė-Kalašnikovienė / Ilona Pliavgo, Liucina Blaževič, Vida Valuckienė, Veronika Čičinskaitė-Golovanova / Anna Miščenko, Lina Valionienė, Rima Šovienė / Irma Kubertavičienė / Eglė Paškevičienė, Milda Zapolskaitė / Erika Žilinskaitė, Rita Račiūnienė / Rasa Viskantaitė, Svetlana Bagdonaitė, Kristina Svolkinaitė
Security Guard: Kęstutis Pavalkis / Edgar Sabilo / Dmitrij Golovanov (piano)
Vaiva Grainytė (b. 1984, based in Lithuania and Canada) is a writer, playwright, and poet. Her creative practice tends to cross the confines of deskwork and be manifested in interdisciplinary practices: radio plays, site specific / dance performances, and musicals. Her solo works – the book of essays Beijing Diaries (2012) and the poetry collection Gorilla’s Archives (2019) – were nominated for the Book of the Year awards and included in the top twelve listings of the most creative books in Lithuania. In her writing, documentary and social issues are exhibited in a poetic and paradoxical manner.
Rugilė Barzdžiukaitė (b. 1983, based in Vilnius) works as a filmmaker, theatre director and visual artist. In her creative practice, Barzdžiukaitė explores the gap between objective and imagined realities, while challenging an anthropocentric way of thinking in a playful way. Her recent full-length documentary film-essay Acid Forest was awarded at the Locarno International Film Festival among others, was shown at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, Lincoln Center in NYC, American Film Institute festival in LA and many other events and venues for cinema and contemporary art. Sun & Sea is her latest collaboration in the medium of performance.
Lina Lapelytė (b. 1984, based in Vilnius and London) is an artist, composer and performer. Her performance-based practice is rooted in music and flirts with pop culture, gender stereotypes and nostalgia. Lapelytė’s works were presented at KIM? in Riga, London, Rupert in Vilnius (solo exhibition), gallery 1857 in Oslo, the Modern Art Museum in Malmo, MACBA in Barcelona, Serpentine and DRAF in London, Cartier Foundation in Paris, Tel Aviv Museum of Art and Kunsthalle Praha. Her upcoming shows include RIBOCA2 – Riga biennale, Glasgow international, Castello di Rivoli and Lilith Studios in Malmö.
In their collaborative practice, the artists pay special attention to the relationship between documentary and fiction, reality and poetry as well as the overlap of theatre, music and the visual arts. Their opera-performance Sun & Sea is the second collaboration for the three artists. The work was most recently presented as Sun & Sea (Marina), representing Lithuania at the 58th Contemporary Art Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia, where it was awarded the Golden Lion for Best National Participation.
Operomanija is a production house based in Lithuania, dedicated to the creation and promotion of new music theatre through diverse cross-disciplinary artistic collaborations. Since its formation in 2008, it has produced around 50 contemporary operas and various multidisciplinary art projects. Organization runs Contemporary Opera Festival NOA (New Opera Action) – one of the leading international new music theatre events in the Baltic region.
LP recorded @ NYC, released in 2018
Order online @ Music Information Centre Lithuania