The following works (in alphabetical order) were selected by the jury for presentation in Rotterdam at Music Theatre NOW 2016.
Counter Tenor: Serge Kakudji (Democratic Republic of Congo)
Conductor: Rodriguez Vangama (Democratic Republic of Congo)
Artistic Direction: Alain Platel (Belgium)
Musical Direction: Fabrizio Cassol (Belgium)
Stage Design: Freddy Tsimba (Democratic Republic of Congo)
Costume: Dorine Demuynck (Belgium)
Light Design: Carlo Bourguignon (Belgium)
Sound Design: Max Stuurman (Belgium)
Producing Organisation: les ballets C de la B & KVS
In Coup Fatal 13 musicians from Kinshasa, conducted by Rodriguez Vangama, are engaged with the repertoire of various baroque composers. The Congolese counter-tenor Serge Kakudji selected the arias. The original music is enriched with the diversity of the musicians. This new music integrates in a natural and exuberant way the baroque phrases with traditional and popular Congolese music, rock and jazz.
Coup Fatal is inspired by the grand gestures of the perky ‘sapeurs’, the dandies of Kinshasa. No need to be ironical, the exuberance doesn’t have to be reduced. Against a background of cartridge cases, movements have to be loud and big, the rawness provoking. Rather than a tribute to baroque music, Coup Fatal is a tribute to the unrelenting elegance of the Congolese.
Il Ballo delle Ingrate
Concept / Stage Direction / Video / Audio Mix: Letizia Renzini (Italy)
Original Texts: Theodora Delavault (France / USA)
Choreography / Dance: Marina Giovannini (Italy)
Antique repertoire selection after the baroque-restyling concert idea “Ninfa In Lamento” by Sabina Meyer and Letizia Renzini
Production: and Organization: Ingrate Art Productions (ITA)
In this mixed media de-construction of Monteverdi's Opera, our Ingrates will rise up against any form of reductionism of life’s complexity: rules, prejudice, segregation, all of the self-made cages our society and our psyche have fabricated throughout the centuries, across the world. These Ingrates are proud of their uncommon destinies that led them to beautiful but lonely choices… That sent them to “hell”. From their hell, the full force of the “solo” voice is born, a voice that Monteverdi discovers to reveal a multiple Being, a state of mind and heart, a resonance beyond any matter of sex, race, status. A music / dance / electronic / video ode to the beauty of interference, and the power of unruliness.
Composer: Christopher Cerrone (USA)
Stage Director: Yuval Sharon (USA)
Musical Director: Marc Lowenstein (USA)
Costume Design: E.B. Brooks (USA)
Choreographer: Danielle Agami (USA)
Producing Organisation: The Industry (Los Angeles, USA)
Imagine arriving at a train station and discovering a man singing beautifully to himself. But what if he were singing to 200 people all over the station who were listening to him, seven other singers, and a live orchestra via wireless headphones?
Invisible Cities is an immersive opera experience based on Italo Calvino’s beloved novel and hauntingly set by composer Christopher Cerrone: a 70-minute meditation on urban life, memory, and human connection. Director Yuval Sharon’s concept makes each audience member the protagonist of the experience in a transfigured view of everyday life. Choreographer Danielle Agami draws the audience into an uncannily intimate proximity to the LA Dance Project.
L.I. | Lingua Imperii - violenta la forza del morso che la ammutoliva
L.I. | Lingua Imperii - so violent was the force that struck it dumb
Stage Director / Text / Video: Simone Derai (Italy)
Music / Performance: Paola Dallan (Italy) / Monica Tonietto (Italy) / Gayané Movsisyan (Armenia)
Music / Sound: Mauro Martinuz (Italy)
Video / Performance: Marco Menegoni (Italy)
Video / Performance: Moreno Callegari (Italy)
Costumes: Serena Bussolaro (Italy)
Producing Organisation: Anagoor (Italy)
The form of theatre chosen for this creation is that of the tragic chorus, in which singing and music, gesture and totemic vision are all interwoven. The theme of the Holocaust is interlaced with the wider theme of killing, a veritable massacre which has no historical frontiers, no stopping-point. Stories of unnameable hunts: not metaphors, but concrete historical phenomena, hateful old habits according to which some men have become predators of other men and, even in the twentieth century, have soaked the soil of Europe with the blood of millions of people. On stage, nine actors sing an undecipherable song (a jolt to the heart, a lament, a prayer) that morphs into blowing winds: they are mourners who no longer want to be hunters and complain the burden of guilt in front of the victims. The chorus includes an Armenian singer, custodian of an ancient and vast musical heritage, and living memory of a wounded people.
Composer: Steffen Wick (Germany)
Sound Design: Simon Detel (Germany)
Stage Director: Axel Tangerding (Germany)
Text: Oliver Sacks (USA) /
Norbert Niemann (Germany)
Stage Design: Marc Thurow (Germany)
Costume: Gudrun Hanke (Germany)
Video: Stefano di Buduo (Germany)
Producing Organisation: Meta Theater Munich
“Musicophilia” is based on Oliver Sacks' bestseller on brain and music, touching the creating or listening to music, deals with the categories of harmony, the area between sound and music. Selected cases are presented, people falling out of their „normality“ due to neurological diseases: a composer who through an accident loses her capacity for polyphonic hearing. Or the student manically translating whole lectures into songs because her brain memorizes the spoken word as music. Thus the audience can experience what it means when the senses run riot. Steffen Wick and Simon Detel have composed the music, using unusual instruments such as a toothbrush. Stefano di Buduo has created hypnotic video sequences reacting on specific frequencies. There is Sacks himself and several of his patients, impersonated by the two musicians and the singer /actress.
Composer / Text: Huang Ruo (China)
Director / Visual Designer / Text: Jennifer Wen Ma (China)
Lead Role / Kunqu Performer / Text: Qian Yi (China)
Text: Ji Chao (China)
Stage Design: Matthew J Hilyard (USA)
Costume: Melissa Kirgan (USA)
Costume: Xing-Zhen Chung-Hilyard (Taiwan)
Interactive Video Designer: Guillermo Acevedo (USA)
Projection Designer: Austin Switser
Choreographer: Gwen Welliver (USA)
Producing Organisation: Spoleto Festival USA
Paradise Interrupted is an arresting new installation opera that poetically weaves the myths of the Garden of Eden and Peony Pavilion with composition that merges 600-year-old Kun opera with contemporary Western opera. The narrative follows a woman searching for an unattainable ideal in a world activated by her singing voice as she attempts to return to the Garden. Interactive technology enables a vast garden and a host of digital characters to interact with the protagonist and respond to her voice.
Composer: Annelies Van Parys (Belgium)
Stage Director / Dramaturgy: Tom Creed (Ireland)
Text: Jen Hadfield (United Kingdom)
Musical Director: Etienne Siebens (Belgium)
Stage Design / Video: Collective 33 1/3 (The Netherlands)
Music / Performance: Neue Vokalsolisten (Germany) / Asko|Schönberg (The Netherlands)
A production by 33 1/3 Collective, Asko/schönberg Ensemble, Neue Vokalsolisten (D), Operadagen Rotterdam, Concertgebouw Brugge, Deutsche Oper Berlin, National Opera Bergen, Muziektheater Transparant and Les Théâtres de la ville de Luxembourg. With support of BesteBuren.
With the suspense of a thriller, the tension of a whodunit and a good dose of humour, in her first opera Annelies Van Parys weaves a subtle web with references to Hitchcock’s visual idiom. Following her composition for the successful production „Ruhe“ she is continuing her artistic course in musical theatre. This time she is collaborating with the Scottish poet Jen Hadfield, winner of the T.S. Eliot Prize, and the Irish director Tom Creed. The Dutch 33 1⁄3 Collective is responsible for the video and set design. The audience is drawn in and shares the view of a voyeur who shamelessly penetrates into other peoples’ lives. „Private View“ confronts us with the ambiguity of watching and being watched, an issue that seems more relevant today than in the past: Big Brother is watching you, more than ever.
Serie Opera III - Salomé
Stage Direction / Concept: Christian Garcia-Gaucher (Switzerland)
Composition: Christian Garcia-Gaucher (Switzerland) /
Evelinn Trouble (Switzerland)
Dramaturgy / Libretto: Evelinn Trouble (Switzerland) /
Sébastien Grosset (Switzerland)
Set design and lights: Sven Kreter (Brasil)
Costumes: Marion Montel (France)
Sound: Raphael Raccuia
Production of the BOOOM CIE, in co-production with Théâtre Arsenic
in Lausanne. This project was supported by City of Lausanne, Loterie Romande, Pro Helvetia,
In this Remake of Salomé, the story is told in a temporal flashback. We see her, alone, appearing on stage at the end of the tragedy, after everything’s already happened: the repugnance to the king Hérode, the duo with Iokanaan, the dance of the seven veils, and the murder of the prophet. Musically, a transition from a contemporary Sprechgesang (spoken singing) to opera singing is made, whilst the madness of Salomé increases. After this long prologue, we find ourselves in a cosy german cabaret atmosphere, and Salomé reappears, fresh and smiling, singing “Lunacy” accompanied by a live pianist, lamenting her love for Iokanaan.
Just for one musician and one singer-actor, there is a bit of Lynch, a bit of Robert Ashley or even a bit of Phantom of the paradise in this strange version of Salomé.
Concept / Performer / Sound / Video: Zoe Scoglio (Australia)
Sound Design: Nigel Brown (Australia)
Interaction Design: Chris Heywood (Australia)
Object Design: Zoe Stuart (Australia)
Outside Eye: Helen Herbertson (Australia)
Shifting Ground is a performance and installation exploring geological time, scale and morphologies. Artist, Zoe Scoglio unites object manipulation, physicalised sound, voice and interactive projection mapping in a ceremonial journey that reveals the presence of the earth’s minerals in the structures we create, the tools we use, and the bodies in which we live. Shifting Ground is a reminder of the impermanent and fleeting nature of our time on this earth, and our symbiotic relationship with the elements that form it.
Direction / Video: Nathalie Teirlinck (Belgium)
Music: An Piere (Belgium) / Fulco Ottervanger (Belgium)
Set Design: Ruimtevaarders (Belgium)
Technicians: Steven Bontinck (Belgium) / Pieter Nys (Belgium)
Costume: Vanessa Evrard (Belgium)
Make-up: Laura Noben (Belgium)
Camera: Rik Zang (Belgium)
A Zonzo Compagnie production
in co-production with Rataplan Arts Centre, Vooruit Arts Centre and Jeugd &
Muziek Vlaanderen. Co-funded by the Creative Europe programme of the European
Slumberland is a breathtaking film-like musical journey into the world of the night. The point at which everything is overturned and the dream outstrips reality. It is the children themselves who with their astonishing imagination take you to a fascinating world. They tell us about how they sleep, what happens in their dreams and why day turns to night. The songs, performed live by An Pierlé and Fulco Ottervanger, and the film images by Nathalie Teirlinck portray in sounds and pictures a series of wondrous figures who meet each other in a nocturnal world. The moon-girl who lands on earth, the sandman who leaves his sand cave, the sleep professional who makes sleep into a science, the bat-boy who prefers to sleep upside-down.
The Queen without a Country
Composer / Musical Director: Wim Henderickx (Belgium)
Stage Director / Video: Wouter Van Looy (Belgium)
Text: Paul Verrept (Belgium)
Stage Design: Freija Van Esbroeck (Belgium)
Costume: Johanna Trudzinski (Germany)
Music: Bl!ndman (Belgium)
Music / Performance: Silbersee (The Netherlands)
A production by Silbersee (NL), Bl!ndman (B) and Muziektheater Transparant (B) in coproduction with Zomer van Antwerpen, Concertgebouw Brugge, Parktheater Eindhoven and Operadagen Rotterdam
A devastating storm is tearing through the realm, a wall of water forces the king and queen out of their castle. And what’s more, out of their country. Their daughter does not feel at home anywhere, and in this new no man’s land she does not set a foot on the ground. Not even a toe. When her parents die, she crowns herself queen of a country that does not exist: a country only of words. ‘I am a living memory, a remnant, a last specimen.’ Following Porcelain and The girl the boy the river, the director Wouter Van Looy is once again collaborating with the writer Paul Verrept. The Queen with no land is a surprising contemporary fairytale about love and loss. To hide in an imagined past? Or set foot on alien soil after all? Any homeless person will recognize the young queen’s dilemma. The resident composer Wim Henderickx translates her homesickness into a blistering score.
Composer: Ted Hearne (USA)
Stage Direction / Video: Daniel Fish (USA)
Text: Mark Doten (USA)
Stage Design / Video: Jim Findlay (USA)
Lighting design: Chris Kuhl (USA)
Music director: Nathan Koci (USA)
Producing Organisation: : Beth Morrison Projects
The Source is a modern-day oratorio; a patchwork of American primary-source texts from 2005-2010: The US military documents known as the ‘Iraq War Logs’ and ‘Afghan War Diary’ form a central part.
Four performers sit amongst the audience, who occupy the entire theater and are surrounded on all sides by four giant screens projecting video throughout. A band of seven musicians playing Hearne’s multistylistic score is stationed behind one of the screens.
The video is composed mostly from original footage of nearly 100 people’s faces as they watched an 8-minute excerpt of an airstrike by Apache helicopters in Baghdad on July 12, 2007. At the end of the piece, the same excerpt is shown to the audience.
Composer / Stage Director: Владимир Раннев (Vladimir Rannev, Russia)
Libretto: Дмитрий Пригов (Dmitry Prigov, Russia)
Producing Organisation: The State Hermitage Museum (Russia)
The opera "Two Acts" was written and staged by Vladimir Rannev to a libretto by Dmitri A. Prigov. It was commissioned by the Goethe-Institut (Germany) and the State Hermitage Museum (Russia).
Hamlet and Faust are two types of reflective consciousness, rooted in European culture. But in this opera their "reflectivity" is not so intense as in the original sources, but like on the last turn of the fading inertia. We are not dealing with characters and personalities, but with mediocre philistines, even marginals, whose activity today is inappropriate and even ridiculous. Their sad fate is so, that the current rules of life do not give them reasons to play their mission. These rules of today's real life do not discord with the pathos of their "lofty thoughts", but comfortably insert this pathos in itself like a ritual or non-burdensome habit. Today they are only noise of language, nothing more.
Wide Slumber for Lepidopterists
Composer: Valgeir Sigurðsson (Iceland)
Text: a. rawlings (Iceland / Canada)
Stage Director / Adaptation for Stage: Sara Martí (Iceland)
Dramaturgy / Adaptation for Stage: Sigríður Sunna Reynisdóttir (Iceland)
Stage Design: Eva Signý Berger (Iceland)
Costume: Harpa Einarsdóttir (Iceland)
Light / Video: Ingi Bekk (Iceland)
Animation / Video Art: Pierre-Alain Giraud (France)
Sound Design: Dan Bora (USA)
Choreographer: Valgerður Rúnarsdóttir (Iceland)
Prop Design: Marie Tanya Keller (USA)
Producing Organisation: VaVaVoom Theatre and Bedroom Community
WIDE SLUMBER for lepidopterists pairs sleep and dream studies with lepidoptery, conjuring an ethereal and visceral world of cyclic metamorphosis.
Tracking the stages of sleep and pairing them with the life cycle of Lepidopterae (butterflies and moths), the audience is lulled into a cocoon where the borders between dreams and reality are blurred.
A small group of musicians accompanies three singers who embody personae within WIDE SLUMBER; The Insomniac, The Somnopterist and The Lepidopterist. A hybrid loom —a dream machine— is a centre-stage object that undergoes constant transformation in the hands of the fourth character; The Weaver.