© 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

Co-production: Nanterre-Amandiers CDN / Théâtre National de Bretagne / Maillon, Théâtre de Strasbourg – Scène
européenne / Holland Festival / Fonds Transfabrik – Fonds franco-allemand pour le spectacle vivant / Ruhrtriennale / Münchner Kammerspiele / Comédie de Genève / Le Manège – Scène nationale de Reims / Centre Culturel André Malraux (Vandoeuvre-lès-Nancy) / MC2 : Grenoble / Tandem Scène nationale / Kaserne Basel / La Filature – Scène nationale de Mulhouse / Festival d’Automne à Paris / Théâtre Garonne / CCN2 – Centre Chorégraphique national de Grenoble / International Summer Festival Kampnagel Hamburg / BIT Teatergarasjen, Bergen.

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