I’m working on a TV show this week, and we’re having it in Oslo’s old “Folketeatret” – the peoples theatre. The building was completed in 1935 and used as a cinema until 1952. From 1959 the Norwegian Opera and Ballet held house here until they moved to the new Operahouse in 2008. A theatre space that is over 70 years leaves some kind of impression on you. This one is no exception. The building har hundreds of small corridors that leads to placed you don’t think exist, opening a door feels like embarking on a mission to charter new and unexplored teritory. There are marks, proof of people and shows past, everywhere. Names, signatures, quotes, old shelves with long forgotten things still on them. Old switches and plugs everywhere, old labels and old signs telling you to go through doors that are no longer there.
I went up to the flyfloor today, to bring in an LX bar. On my way, I took the lift from stagelevel and up to level 7, where the first flyfloor is. The lift is on the opposite side off the flytower, so you walk out of the lift and onto the gallery and then through a door before you vanish inside long and winding hallways (the winding hallway is obviously the back wall of the stage and flytower, curved so that it just fits a round horizon backdrop.) before you emerge out onto the flytower. However, before I go that far, there was a door with a large sign, written in gothic looking letters that said “do not enter with shoes on”. The door was ajar, and I had to look inside. There, in one of the corners of this gigantic building, far out of everything else, was a small dance studio. The windows where dirty, the ceiling and the door was old. The mirrros on the wall and the bar was worn and well used. The dancefloor, stretched as if it was laid yesterday, looked like it had been thread on by thousands. Yet, this small room, up there, in a remote corner, in a hallway where only the black dressed technicians usually wanders, was the very essence of what a theatre is.
It was as if someone turned a valve and all my feelings for theatre came pooring out. I realised I haven’t been really working in a theatre space big enough to have a flytower for a long time… the feeling, was.. magic. Comming out of the room again, I felt strangely lightheaded, invincible, happy. I remembered many memories of past, and ambitions not forgotten. But most important, it was a true feeling of purpose. True magic. I like theatres because it is the only place i truly can reign. It feels like my space, a place where I am the master of magic. Where I belong.
wHere i find a Purpose