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'Penjaga Rumah': a portrait of mental illness and society

Sebastian Partogi

The Jakarta Post

PREMIUM
Jakarta  /  Mon, April 15, 2019  /  06:00 pm
'Penjaga Rumah': a portrait of mental illness and society

Don't threaten me: Lauren (Nosen Karol Handayani, right), a homeless woman sheltered by Karina (not seen in this photo) in her house, threatens Karina's older sister Judith (Novinta Dhini Sutopo) with a knife after Judith aggressively tries to protect Karina from Lauren's suspiciously manipulative and insincere behaviors. (Komunitas Salihara/Witjak Widhi Cahya)

A powerful contemporary all-female adaptation of British playwright Harold Pinter’s The Caretaker brings the issue of mental illness to the forefront. Our tendency to take human behavior at face value causes us to be judgmental and to stigmatize others, including people with mental illnesses. Jakarta-based theatrical troupe Teater Pintu brought its audience’s attention to the issue of mental illness for two full hours with its intense, immense and believable performance of its adaptation of British playwright Harold Pinter’s 1960 script, The Caretaker. The troupe comprises alumni and students of the Jakarta Arts Institute (IKJ) and they performed using the translated version of the script called Penjaga Rumah, written by the late Indonesian playwright, Toto Sudarto Bachtiar. Teater Pintu member Novinta Dhini Sutopo – who also directed and played i...