performed by the She She Pops and their mothers (DE)
“A great show about parents’ faults and mistakes” Der Spiegel
2018 marks the start of a collaboration between ZONA K and Teatro Franco Parenti which, in an unusual and constructive way, present some shows together. An OFF reality and a historic theatre on the Milanese scene thus make explicit a convergence of artistic and thematic interests on some international avant-garde companies.
The performers are on stage with their respective mothers in an unusual version of Igor Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring. The performance focuses on the sacrifice of women in today’s family and society.
Since 1993, the Berlin-based women’s collective She She Pop have been exploring the social boundaries of communication in shows where they combine humour and intransigence on the one hand and spontaneity and sincerity on the other. After inviting their fathers in 2010 to participate in the performance Testament, they continued their investigation by adapting Igor Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring, together with their real mothers. The result is a lucid and irreverent analysis of the contradictory relationships between generations, a sort of manifesto on the role of women, prisoners of the conflict between private life and career.
The performance focuses on the theme of women’s sacrifice in the family and society. Stravinsky’s religious dimension of the ritual of human sacrifice is replaced by the moral question of self-sacrifice in the relationship between women and men and between mothers and daughters. Put in these terms, the topic immediately generates reluctance: sacrificing oneself as a woman for others seems an obsolete issue today. The enormous importance of self-determination and personal freedom that drives our society has obscured the sense of devotion and sacrifice.
The ancient pagan ritual that inspired Stravinsky, on the other hand, is based on the certainty that every community requires sacrifice, and indeed is founded and affirmed precisely through collective sacrifice. As in Stravinsky’s original play, the performance stages a ritual: the meeting between the She She Pops, their mothers and the audience. However, unlike the community gathered by Stravinsky to celebrate the sacrifice of spring, there is no agreement between the She She Pops and their mothers as to how it should be performed. Doubts arise from the very beginning. However, at the same time, the decision to try, together, is firm. “Who were we? Who are we? Why have we become like this?”
A project by ZONA K and Teatro Franco Parenti
c/o Teatro Franco Parenti, Via Pier Lombardo, 14 Milan
performance in German with Italian subtitles
a project She She Pop by and with Cornelia and Sebastian Bark, Heike and Johanna Freiburg, Fanni Halmburger, Lisa Lucassen, Mieke Matzke, Irene and Ilia Papatheodorou, Heidi and Berit Stumpf, Nina Tecklenburg video Benjamin Krieg and She She Pop set design Sandra Fox and She She Pop costumes Lea Søvsø musical collaboration Damian Rebgetz choreographic collaboration Jill Emerson dramaturgical advice Veronika Steininger lighting and technical direction Sven Nichterlein sound Florian Fischer video assistant Anna Zett overtitles KITA (Anna Kasten) coordination and support Fanny Frohnmeyer, Kaja Jakstat, Ruschka Steininger technical support tour Florian Fischer, Manuel Horstmann, Andreas Kröher, Michael Lentner, Sven Nichterlein, Torsten Schwarzbach translation for surtitles Emanuele Galante production/PR ehrliche arbeit – freelance office for culture administration Aminata Oelßner management Elke Weber production She She Pop co-production Hebbel am Ufer, FFT Düsseldorf, Mousonturm Frankfurt, Kaserne Basel, brut Vienna, German Language Theater Festival of Prague/Archa Theater Prag, Kyoto Experiment, Théâtre de la Ville/Festival d’Automne à Paris with the support of the City of Berlin and Hauptstadtkulturfonds Berlin
She She Pop is a collective founded at the end of 1990 by a group of graduates of the “Applied Theater Studies program” in Gießen. The members are Sebastian Bark, Johanna Freiburg, Fanni Halmburger, Lisa Lucassen, Mieke Matzke, Ilia Papatheodorou and Berit Stumpf. The executive production is by Elke Weber. The performers, mostly women, see themselves as authors, playwrights and makers of their own stage art. The reference to their own biographies is primarily a method – and not an aim – of their work: the biographical material is condensed into a recognisable artistic strategy and stylised positions. The result is a form of theatre strongly linked to experimentation. The theatre is transformed into a space dedicated to utopian communication. She She Pop considers it its task to trace the social limits of communication – and to go beyond the protective theatrical space, in both specific and artistic terms. Since 1998 She She Pop has been based in Berlin. The theatre HAU Hebbel am Ufer has been co-producer and partner since 2003. Other partners, in Germany and abroad, are: Munich Kammerspiele, Schauspiel Stuttgart, Kampnagel Hamburg, Forum Freies Theater Dusseldorf, Mousonturm Frankfurt / Main and Kaserne Basel, brut Wien, Theatre de la Ville / Festival d’Automne de Paris, Festival Kyoto Experiment Archa Theatre Prague, Prague German language Festival and the Konfrontationen Festival Lublin. The group is currently on tour with the following shows: the preview of Oratorio, which will premiere in February 2018 in Berlin, The Ocean is closed (2017), which premiered in October in Berlin and has just been presented at Romaeuropa Festival, Besessen (2016), 50 Grades of Shame (2016), Some of us (2014), Ende (2014), Schubladen (2012). Among the most successful shows, we must remember the extraordinary Testament (2010) which saw the performers on stage with their fathers.