On stage are three performers, different for each presentation and no more prepared or rehearsed than the audience watching. Two performers are adults: they copy children visible on screens, one behind the audience, two hidden each side of the stage. The adults are moved like puppets by this absent presence of hoodied kids.
The movement on stage is accompanied by a chorus of child voices who speak in synchronised whispers. This narration tumbles through different ‘entries’ - stories, songs, jokes, dreams, rumours - selected as documented instances of vulnerability, openness or surprise. The result is an...
"automatic-scrapbook-essay-musical-poem-manifesto created by several million abandoned sisters&brothers who live in a shelter by the motorway running alongside the river.” A generation of child heroes with an uncertain future have gathered forces to make a machine for re-animating adults, shaking them from their “screen-entranced anaesthesia” in real time and in front of other adults (the audience) who, the kids hope, will be infected by the process they witness.
Everything is seemingly orchestrated and checked over by the child on stage, aged between 8-11 (also unrehearsed): the recorded children’s “living associate, who we speak to through headphones, concealed beneath their hoodie”. The child organises the files, moves the adults around, points, sings, interrupts, announces, and sometimes simply joins the audience to watch.
Inspired by the novel ‘Pluie d’été’ by Marguerite Duras, and with music and text excerpts by Darren O’Donnell, Alan Pauls, Eric Dolphy, Sun Ra, ee cummings, New Order and Leonard Cohen.
Concept, text, music, sound
- Ant Hampton
Dramaturgie - Rita Pauls
Artistic / choreographic assistance - Anna Rispoli
Video design / lighting / technical direction - Mikko Gastael (Expander)
Recorded voices - Mia Hampton, Maxim Daish-Belay, Ines Labbé
Recorded dancers - Ishaq El Akul, Dora Meierhans, Garil Paturel, Laîa Vaissier
First stage assistance from Arantxa Martinez, Nora Tormann, Dora Meierhans and Timo Kleinemeier.
With thanks to Britt Hatzius, Martin Hampton, Caroline Daish, Fred Labbé, Michele Piazzi, Nerea Craviotto, Julien Vaissier, Peggy Donnelly, Emiliano Battista, Leandro Battista, Misha and Alma Downey, Martine Lange
Management - Danila & Freitag, Agentur für Performative Künste
Coproduction - Kaaitheater Brussels, ZeitRaumExit Mannheim
Supported by the Landesverband Freie Tanz- und Theaterschaffende Baden-Württemberg e.V. with funds from the Ministry of Science, Research and the Arts of the State of Baden-Württemberg
First stage development (January 2020) supported by Theater Rampe Stuttgart and Fonds Darstellende Künste (Initialförderung) with funds from the German Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media