Review: Verdensteatret's Bridge Over Mud Sep 23, 2016

by Koushik Ghosh

Verdensteatret’s Bridge Over Mud begins with the same intention as the Annunciation but is different from the Latin version of Gabriel’s announcement to Virgin Mary. It begins, however, with the announcement of the arrival of glorious life. 

The screen on the left wakes up to light, light reflected by a primordial mud, somewhat mercurial in texture and color, moving in protoplasmic gestures, towards a unity of some sort.

While one can sense something akin to life taking shape on a small corner of the stage, leaving everything else to the mercy of ancient darkness, it does not mimic biology, mitosis, and cell division, but begins with a delicate addition that enables us to recognize shapes such as a mouth or eyes, which slowly form a recognizable face. A sudden rupture begins to deconstruct the shape that is familiar to new shapes that exist more singularly, more independently than a mammalian face, such as the kidney...

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"Psychedelic Norwegian Theater" - The Seattle Times on Verdensteatret Sep 22, 2016

by Erin


The Seattle Times on Verdensteatret's Bridge Over Mud:

Verdensteatret is the kind of theater company that baffles critics.

Reviews about the Norway-based collective — whose name roughly translates to “World Theater” — can be very specific about what Verdensteatret isn’t, but tend to get a little vague when they try to describe what Verdensteatret is.

 

The company’s latest...

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Verdensteatret Artist Note Sep 19, 2016

by Erin


photo courtesy Verdensteatret

Program Note from the artists of Verdensteatret:

…the great span between the work’s deafening noise and fragile, unsteady space seems to mirror the many extremes of human existence. It evokes a quote from Andrej Tarkovsky’s science fiction movie Stalker: “Weakness is something fantastic, strength is nothing.” (review in Klassekampen)

"You go as far as the shoes of reason will carry...then you jump..."

Bridge Over Mud marks our final move into a fully audiovisual practice – a distinctive form that changes character and direction all the time. One can experience the work as a kinetic installation, an inter-media orchestra or as abstract object-theatre. This creates a challenging complexity where opposing forces collide with "impossible paradoxes" on...

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Broen over Gjørme: in the words of the artists Sep 15, 2016

by Erin


photo courtesy Verdensteatret

The company describes the work Broen over Gjørme (Bridge Over Mud):

"A hybrid between concert, performance and installation,where the whole
space is played as one polyphonic audiovisual instrument."

We try to “play the whole room” like one big instrument. In this room everything is connected and can be played on from any thinkable angle. During the long working process in our studio in Oslo we have, step bay step, entered a total audiovisual laboratorium, a state of deep integration between musicians and performers, kinetic sculptures, video, sound, robotics, etc.

Broen over Gjørme can be seen...

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Bridge Over Mud - Nordwind Festival Write-up Sep 15, 2016

by Erin


photo courtesy Verdensteatret

A nice summary of the show form the Nordwind Festival:

The principal protagonist in BRIDGE OVER MUD is a rambling landscape filled with technological apparatus and intricate objects. Projections, abstract images and noises emanate from these objects, fading before you have time to comprehend, a electro-mechanical object theatre that can only be grasped in terms of association and emotion.

Prior to commencing work on BRIDGE OVER MUD Verdensteatret’s 12-strong team was on tour...

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Verdensteatret Video Preview Sep 14, 2016

by Erin


Get ready for the full-immersion experience that is Verdensteatret with this short promo video.
Be sure to turn on sound!



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More About Verdensteatret Sep 14, 2016

by Erin


photo courtesy Verdensteatret

Learn more about Oslo's intrepid Verdensteatret, see photos and images of past shows, learn about their inspirations and history and more at their website

 


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ARTISTIC DIRECTOR NOTE: HEAVENS TO MURGATROYD Sep 2, 2016

by Lane

“Should anyone even care about making art in the Anthropocene?” An artist friend posed this question to me over messy Cuban sandwiches on a sunny day in July at the beach. I hadn’t even heard of this term – a possible new epoch defined by humankind, agriculture and/or the Industrial Revolution. Imagine geologists in the future studying stratigraphic layers of plastic and semi-automatic weapons. 

A lot of really bad things happened in the days, weeks and months leading up to those sandwiches, and a lot of really bad things have happened since. Around this time the love of my life told me Alvin Toffler, the author of Future Shock, had died. From the NY Times article she sent me: In Mr. Toffler’s coinage, future shock wasn’t simply a metaphor for our difficulties in dealing withnew things. It was a real psychological malady, the “dizzying disorientation brought on by the premature arrival of the future.” And “unless intelligent steps are taken to...

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