Review by Ionuț Sociu
Performance by Bogdan Georgescu, with Andreea Eșanu, Andrei Ioniță, Sânziana Nicola
Corporation v. community
Galeria 26 (OTA), Bucharest
In ForTheWin, there is a lot of talking about death (a ski accident, a case of suicide due to debt, a case of overworking), but the manner of speaking is detached and bland, lacking in voice variations. Here, death seems to be just another piece of information among others, and one of the merits of this performance is that it captures a type of homogenous communication in which banal observations are in the same league with more serious issues.
Continuously connected to her handsfree device, Raluca (Sânziana Nicola) ceases to communicate in full sentences. Since she no longer makes any distinction between her personal life and her professional one, her discourse no longer reflects any emotional translation from one register to another.
What’s surprising about ForTheWin is the slow pace of events and the subtle way in which it dismantles the stereotype of the corporation as a space of hyperactivity, as it is often perceived from the outside.
ForTheWin is, above anything else, a performance about fear and about the way in which workaholism ends up augmenting this fear. The fear of hoping you could do something else, the fear of talking about your personal issues: when talking about her employees, Andreea ((Andreea Eșanu) says she respects and admires them “for minding their own business and for keeping their fears to themselves;” the fear of not being seen as a team-player and the fear of taking a break. A break is “risky” because it implies confronting the present, while in a corporation everything is projected towards the future. “For the coming future, for the growth, for development,” says Raluca. “But what happens to now?,” she asks herself in the end. That “now” which gives you the chance to get a blood test (“a blood sugar test takes one minute and fourteen seconds”) and to communicate with those around you.
 Her story in ForTheWin is inspired by that of Raluca Stroescu, the young woman who was working as an audit manager for Ernst & Young and died of exhaustion in 2006.