Sagan om Unga Teatern i Malmö 1970-92

Gudrun Milekic

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis (monograph)


This dissertation investigates whether Unga Teatern, a theatre group for children and youth at Malmö City Theatre, had an aesthetic profile of its own. It focuses on three sections: the theme of fairy tales and myths under the artistic direction of Ronnie Hallgren (19977-83), his staging of English plays (1982 -84) and the avantgarde production for children and youth under the direction of Karin Parrot (1990-92). The dissertation also examines the production and reception context in regard to cultural politics, the development of the school system ond its curriculum, theatrical rooms, treatment in the press, reception by the audience and the status of the group. Analyses of plays, working process and reception are made for nine productions. As the fundamental basis for the performance analysis, Ptrice Pavis' mise en scene definition is used.In chapter one various contextual developments from 1970-92 are introduced and through six synchronous cross-sections it is shown how the interplay affected the contitions of Unga Teatern. In chapter two, fairy tale and myth productions are examined, Jevgenij Schwartz's Little Red Riding Hood, Gösta Kjellin's The Story of the Sea and his Story of Svullfot, particularlyas they relate to theories presented by Bruno Bettelheim in The Uses of Enchantment. In chapter three the cultural transformation of three English plays; Shelagh Delaney's Taste of Honey, Nigel William's Class Enemy and Claire Luckham's Trafford Tanzi, are examined. Although all of them have a circular composition, it was hallgran's ambition to break this and show that young people have a realistic oppertunity to make something of their lives. In chapter four the working process, the dramturgic structures and the staging of three productions are examined: Inanna, based on a Sumeric myth, Travellers with Their Suitcases, conceived through the work of the cast and Only Sanne, based on a novel by Mecka Lind about street children. Deleuze's and Guattari's rhizome-model is used for describing the dramaturgy as well as the working process. The investigation finds for all three sections that the group was aiming for an aesthestic profile of its own. The most characteristic for Hallgren's aesthetics is his exploration of the possibilities of the theatrical room. Hallgren moves towards a deeper approach in his fairy tale productions and tries to find a meeting-place for children and adults in his productions. In his productions for young people he adapts English plays for adults to Swedish youth context set in the early 80's. Tanzi can be seen as anotherstep towards exploring the theatrical room. This production also introduced a more physical performance style. The most unitary aesthetic profile is seen during Parrot's direction. An investigative approach, integration of the theatrical sign systems, the absence of text and a physical acting style are characteristic for all the productions. There was an effort to meet the child in the performance and in the creation of the narrative situation under Hallgren's and Parrot's direction. There werw also obvious efforts to make young people's vulnerability visible while still providing hope.
Original languageSwedish
Awarding Institution
  • Comparative Literature
  • [unknown], [unknown], Supervisor, External person
Award date1999 Sept 25
ISBN (Print)91-7966-584-5
Publication statusPublished - 2000

Bibliographical note

Defence details

Date: 1999-09-25
Time: 10:15
Place: Kulturanatomen, Biskopsg 7 lund

External reviewer(s)

Name: Helander, Karin
Title: [unknown]
Affiliation: [unknown]


Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Languages and Literature

Free keywords

  • General and comparative literature
  • Teatervetenskap
  • Dramatic art
  • Rhizomatic structure
  • Avantgardism
  • Post-modern Theatre
  • Modern English Drama
  • Theatrical Transformation
  • Bruno Bettelheim
  • Myths and Fairy Tales
  • Young Peoples Theatre
  • Children's Theatre
  • literature criticism
  • literary theory
  • Allmän och jämförande litteratur
  • litteraturkritik
  • litteraturteori

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