Transición, or Learning to Re-Remember

Transición, by playwrights Alfonso Plou and Julio Salvatierra, presents the audience with a perspective that the transition from Franco's dictatorship to a constitutional monarchy did not go far enough to break ties with the old regime. Using a medical pathology lens, the play subjects imagined former leaders to review their roles and legacies at the end of their lives, in this case, Adolfo Suárez during and after his tenure as Prime Minister. The plot structure flashes backwards and forwards in time, weaving historical moments into the fictional narrative of the playwrights. These temporal leaps center on Adolfo, an elderly man in a clinic waiting to be evaluated for a possible case of Alzheimer’s disease. His present reality triggers hazy memories of historical moments in his presumed past that blur the line between not only in his own life, but also in Spain’s troubled transition to, and the early years of, democracy. By placing this play within a medical-pathological context, the playwrights challenge the spectators’ notions of a “healthy” transition to democracy and how Spain has constructed its own narrative over the past forty years. In this manner, the play interrogates the collective body politic’s mental and physical health and suggests that a metaphorical check-up is necessary in order to examine the official narrative, and to re-evaluate its integrity. 


  • Spanish Peninsular Studies