Duration: one hour and 40 minutes without interval
One night in April 2012, a man named Ihsane Jarfi chatted for a while with a group of young men in a grey Polo on the corner of a street in Liège, in front of a gay bar. Two weeks later, his body was found on the outskirts of a forest. He had been tortured for hours and then killed in a horrifically violent manner.
Milo Rau has taken his cue from that case, reconstructing it in the theatre with professional and amateur actors.
“The starting point of my work is how reality can be influenced by the theatre and, on the contrary, how it can be represented on stage”, says Milo Rau.
From the very beginning, theatre has been a place for the evoking of the dead, a ritual and cathartic experience within which crimes are committed. In the first part of the series Histoires du théâtre, created by Milo Rau and dedicated to the essence, history and future of the theatre, the director and playwright examines the form of “tragedy” as an allegorical representation of criminology.
What lies at the origins of a crime? Premeditation or coincidence? What plots lead to murder? Who will be sacrificed? For what reasons? Who punishes the assassins? What role does the audience play? What fault does the community have?
Together with the actors Sara de Bosschere, Sébastien Foucault and Johan Leysen, a group of witnesses and amateur actors, Milo Rau goes in search of a capital crime and the fundamental emotions of the tragic experience: loss and sadness, disaster and fear, cruelty and terror, betrayal and mistrust. He tells of the agony of a city which, in the wake of a seemingly unperceivable economic decline, sinks gradually into violence and desperation.
The actors immerse themselves in the extraordinary and in the abysses of life and theatre, assuming the roles of main characters in a tragic news story. What emerges is a manifesto for a democratic theatre of reality.
Piccolo Teatro Strehler
from 8 to 10 May 2019
The Repetition, Histoire(s) du théâtre (I)
created and directed by Milo Rau
text by Milo Rau and the company
dramaturgy and research by Eva-Maria Bertschy
dramaturgy collaborators Stefan Bläske, Carmen Hornbostel
sets and costumes Anton Lukas
video Maxime Jennes, Dimitri Petrovic
sound Jens Baudisch
lighting Jurgen Kolb
with Sara de Bosschere, Sébastien Foucault, Johan Leysen, Tom Adjibi, Suzy Cocco, Fabian Leenders
an International Institute of Policital Murder (IIPM), Création Studio Théâtre National Wallonie-Bruxelles production
with the support of Hauptstadtkulturfonds Berlin, Pro Helvetia and Ernst Göhner Stiftung
a Kunstenfestivaldesarts, NTGent, le Théâtre Vidy-Lausanne, le Théâtre Nanterre-Amandiers, Tandem Scène Nationale Arras Douai, Schaubühne am Lehniner Platz Berlin, le Théâtre de Liège, Münchner Kammerspiele, Künstlerhaus Mousonturm Frankfurt a. M., Theater Chur, Gessnerallee Zürich, Romaeuropa Festival co-production
with the collaboration of ESACT Liège
in French and Flemish with Italian subtitles
The show is unsuitable for spectators under the age of 16