Aoustras or the Couch Grass, 2011

3 men – 2 women

Lena Kitsopoulou

Aoustras means Couch Grass. It is the useless weed that the farmers pluck and throw away, so that they can have a healthy field. In the case of the play, “Aoustras “ is a stranger, the alien body within a society that cannot be accepted by blind and egotistic nationalism.

A group of Greeks decide to invite a German tourist in their home. The hospitable spirit is gradually turning into aggressiveness. In the beginning the group is using, in a humorous way, belittling comments towards the stranger, comments that characterize the mentality of people that have no self-esteem and, in an attempt to save themselves from the meanness they receive, they are looking hopelessly for a victim to take it out on.   

So, this group of Greeks, using all the clichés (Greeks are “dudes,” generous, hospitable, sentimental, outgoing whereas the northern Europeans are frigid, killjoys, miserly) they are attacking progressively the stranger, until the point when the phrases they are uttering are slowly activating the fascist within themselves. The gang winds up literally torturing the stranger, threatening him with a gun, trying to make him learn a Greek song, teaching him forcefully the meaning of the verses and the correct speech output. It is a play about the inner fascist we all hide within us and about the mirror we all must dare to face at some point. 



Is she really the most important "angry" playwright of her generation, an original representative of the Greek "in-your-face" dramaturgy? Up to now...