Poets’ Night is a play in verse written for the Reykjavík Municipial Theatre where it was performed in the fall of 2000, directed by Benedikt Erlingsson. Partly influenced by Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dream, the play takes place on the (fictional) annual night in Iceland when all the dead poets rise from their graves and go partying downtown. Everybody wants to meet their favorite old master: The young poets run all over town looking for “their man”. The feast ends with a “Poets’ Fight” where the young ones wrestle with words like boxers in a ring. The dead ones act as judges.
Poets’ Night was based on the Hallgrimur’s poem The Search for Jónas Hallgrímsson that appeared in Collected Poems (1978-1998). The play was written in February of 2000.
The critics were split in their decision. Some hated it, others loved it. No big success at the box office, the play received the daily DV Cultural Prize for Theatre in 2001.