Normality: The Design of Crime

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Belgrade, 1998. Waiting for NATO.
Photos by Stephanie Damoff and from the Serbian Press

a play in three acts
Jasmina Tesanovic
in English, Italian, Serbian

Aca, a videomaker and war criminal. A shabby Balkan hick, small, sneaky, mid-30s.
Dietrich, a European diplomat. A well-tailored smoothie, but a little out of his depth. Late 20s.
Young Balkan waitress
The Prosecutor: an ambitious female law careerist in a risky job.
The Defense Lawyer: A swaggering male shyster in loud clothes who loves to play to the crowd.
The Judge: a surprisingly stylish but fiercely determined woman jurist.
Six Scorpions: patriotic, tattooed tough-guys with a lot of muscle and swagger.
Six Grieving relatives: Bereaved Moslem women and one boy from a small rural town, Srebrenica who lost sons and husbands and a father in a genocide atrocity.
A Feminist Peace Activist who observes the trial.
The Gay Sidekick: another peace activist, the woman’s activists moral support.
Six Scorpion Wives: the garishly dressed molls of the paramilitary group.
Policemen: court security guards, in police uniform.
The American Technocrat: a boisterous American diplomat.

Settings: A Balkan café, and a war crimes court in the Balkans,
and the café attached to the war-crimes court.
Time: 2006.

A Balkan café.

Aca, a small, middle aged man, with a frightened look in his sly eyes, is chain-smoking in a cheap café. The background music is Serbian “turbofolk,” with electronic drums and a warbling, over-emoting female singer.

The coffee-drinker has a mustache, and wears a vinyl jacket, a leather cap, and a thick scarf on his neck. The simple café table, with two rickety chairs, might be anywhere in Europe, but he is sipping from a tiny cup of black Turkish coffee, and the ashtray is piled high with butts.

On the tabletop is a small package simply wrapped in a knotted bandanna.

Dietrich, a tall blonde businessman, carefully barbered and expensively dressed, enters the café stage right. Dietrich might be Swedish or German. He carries a business valise.
Dietrich looks around himself, visibly lost. Aca catches the foreigner’s eye and gives him a furtive sign.

Aca: Hi there.
Dietrich: Oh… Ciao.

These Boots Are Made for Dancing

Nekad je Austin imao problem sa ovim festivalom South By Southwest sve dok hipici nisu dosli na vlast, jer to je festival gde hipici ne samo sto su na vlasti vec su i opozicija. Vrlo impresivno: kao guliverska prica, kao Kristijanija, samo sve to mnogo vise i mnogo bolje. Sinoc na Sestoj ulici od podne krenula je svirka; do ponoci i sve okolne ulice su bile zatvorene i ozvucene. Sve u svemu 1300 bendova svira recimo triputa toliko koncerata, uglavnom besplatnih na festivalu jer je bitno da te cuju…bas na SXSW. Improvizavani bendovi po ulici uopste nisu amaterski vec prodaju cedeove i zvuce kao klasici: karnevalsko andergraund oblacenje, sloppy i dirty, pivo u ruci i na cemu god da si, samo da znas da je sve strogo zabranjeno i kaznjivo i da se teksaska policija ne zeza. More


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