“Melancholy of Dragons” named best play at Fajr

January 30, 2018

TEHRAN – “The Melancholy of Dragons” by Phillipe Quesne from France was crowned best play at the 36th Fajr International Theater Festival in Tehran, the organizers announced on Monday evening.

“The Melancholy of Dragons” is about a battered old Citroën that breaks down in a glade in the middle of an otherworldly, snow-covered landscape. There are six middle-aged headbangers in the car. An old lady who knows her way round an engine offers to repair their car for them. To thank her, they create a “recreational park” with everything in their hard rock repertoire.

Ashkan Kheilnejad from Iran was selected as best director for his play, “The History Boys”, which also brought him the award for best set design.

“The History Boys” tells the story of a group of history pupils in Cutlers’ Grammar School, Sheffield, that prepare for the Oxford and Cambridge entrance examinations under the guidance of three teachers with contrasting styles.

Winners in different categories were announced during a ceremony at Vahdat Hall.

Also in the international section, “Omissions” by Mehdi Ziachamani from Iran won the best screenplay award. The award for best actor was presented to Morteza Esmaeilkashi for his role in “Mephisto”, a stage adaptation of German writer Klaus Mann’s novel of the same title.

“Mephisto” also won its director Masud Delkhah the special jury award.

Katja Burkle from Germany won the best actress award for her role in “Hamlet” by Christopher Ruping.

Katja Burkle from Germany accepts the best actress award for her role in “Hamlet” by Christopher Ruping during the 36th Fajr International Theater Festival at Tehran’s Vahdat Hall, January 29, 2018. (IRNA/Mehdi Jafari)

Neda Nasr was picked as best costume designer for her collaborating with “List of the Dead” by director Reza Servati from Iran.

The award for best sound technician went to Jeroen Wuyts and Valentijn Dhaenens for “Bigmouth” from Belgium.

In the national competition, the special jury award was presented to “Shelter” by Amin Miri, while the award for best director was gleaned by Payam Larian for “And the Other Stories”.

The award for best actor went to Behnam Sharafi for his role in “The Blue Pink” by Sanaz Bayan, and the best actress award was shared by Masumeh Rahmani for her role in “Anna Karenina” and Masumeh Karimi for her role in “And the Other Stories”.

About 200 troupes from Iran and other countries performed during the event, which ran from January 18 to 29.

Photo: Ashkan Kheilnejad holds the award for best director for his play “The History Boys” during the 36th Fajr International Theater Festival at Tehran’s Vahdat Hall, January 29, 2018. (Mehr/Behnam Tofiqi)

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