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By Mei Jia | China Daily | Updated: 2019-10-14 08:11

Offending the Audience.[Photo provided to China Daily]

Meng says Handke deserved a Nobel years ago.

Debuting in 1966, Offending the Audience was Handke's "anti-play"-a play with no plot and no storyline that relied on the language of insults and curses to engage with the audience.

Meng experienced the play in New York, and decided to sit there alone after the play was meant to have finished. He shared an anecdote about it in Wuzhen, Zhejiang province, in 2016.

"Two of the 28 performers left, I suppose they rushed to the metro, while the remaining actors sat in front me continuing the 'battle' until their manager came," Meng says.

It was also in 2016 that Handke visited China for the first time. Talking about writing the play, Handke recalls how reluctant he was to attend the theater because his girlfriend at that time was an actress, adding that his reasons for writing the play was partly out of his preference as a book reader over joining a stage audience, and partly just to earn money. He says the play was "an analysis of the audience and performances, and projecting voices through language".

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