© Estelle Hanania

A hallucinatory, sensual and harrowing phantasmagoria.

About the production

A young man is driven to despair by feeling that his mother does not love him. In order to force her to abandon her reserved distance, he fakes suicide.

This early short drama by Robert Walser not only deals with manipulation and power games within relationships, at the same time it also reflects on how emotions are remote from language. This broken relationship between feelings and the extent to which they can be represented will be explored by the trained choreographer and puppeteer Gisèle Vienne together with the outstanding actors Adèle Haenel and Ruth Vega Fernandez plus 15 life-sized puppets. They separate voice and text, gestures and mimicry, acting and music from each other, allowing each of these elements its own story. Simultaneously and from multiple perspectives they superimpose contradictory, paradoxical levels of emotion and reality, layers of socially conditioned expectation and their uncontrollable, violent undercurrents, channeled and desolate, dreamed of and suffered. Without explaining the cold love of the mother or the sad, theatrical bearing of her child, the situations are successively unpacked and dismantled into their individual parts. A hallucinatory, sensual and harrowing phantasmagoria.

Production DACM / Company Gisèle Vienne

Coproductions Nanterre-Amandiers CDN / Théâtre National de Bretagne / Maillon, Théâtre de Strasbourg – Scène européenne / Holland Festival, Amsterdam / Fonds Transfabrik – Fonds franco-allemand pour le spectacle vivant / Centre Culturel André Malraux (Vandœuvre-lès-Nancy) / Comédie de Genève / La Filature – Scène nationale de Mulhouse / Le Manège – Scène nationale de Reims / MC2 : Grenoble / Ruhrtriennale / Tandem Scène nationale / Kaserne Basel / International Summer Festival Kampnagel Hamburg / Festival d’Automne à Paris / Théâtre Garonne / CCN2 – Centre Chorégraphique national de Grenoble / BIT Teatergarasjen, Bergen / Black Box Teater, Oslo
With the support of CN D Centre national de la danse, La Colline – théâtre national and Théâtre Vidy-Lausanne

Trailer L’Étang/Der Teich
L'Etang, Gisèle Vienne
L'Etang, Gisèle Vienne | © Estelle Hanania
L'Etang, Gisèle Vienne
L'Etang, Gisèle Vienne | © Estelle Hanania

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Dates and tickets

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