Doctor Faustus Lights The Lights
Ensemble We Are We - Tanztheater Eva Weissmann (BRD)
An avant-garde dance interpretation of Gertrude Stein's play
In this performance Eva Weissmann, artistic director of the We Are We Ensemble, transcribes Gertrude Stein's writing technique - from her most famous dramatic text - into movement and expression on stage. Music, dance and song are connected to each other in surprising ways, accompanied by unusual stage actions such as painting, reading, and sculpting. Gertrude Stein choreographed her words on paper. Similarly, Eva Weissmann re-arranges objects onstage to create new compositions of movement and sound.
Eva Weissmann is an avant-garde theatre artist working on the international dance scene. The artists she chooses for her performances have completely different artistic backgrounds: musicians, singers, speakers, painters, sculptors, actors and of course, dancers. The unifying factor is their desire to question traditional genre divisions.
Gertrude Stein is considered the mother of the modernists and the grandma of rap. She is one of the most important, yet under-recognized figures in literature. Born in 1874 in the USA, she grew up in Vienna, San Francisco, and lived for a long period in France. We know her best for her friendships with Hemingway, Picasso, T.S. Eliot. She influenced many artists of her generation. Her writing technique is described as cubist, and minimalist. Gertrude Stein worked with repetition and an abundance of rhythm, rhyme and sound associations. The entirely unusual images created are also, potentially, images for the theatre.
Gertrude Stein called her play Doctor Faustus Lights The Lights an "opera". In it, she reshapes the traditional pattern of daily speech, and juxtaposes this pioneering work with one of the strongest stories in Western culture - the myth of Faust. Weaving together Faust's legacy with the political situation in 1938, she turned everything inside out. Doctor Faustus sells his souls and races Mefisto to be the first to invent the electric light. His passionate desire is to go to Hell. A woman appears with the mystic name "Marguerite Ida or Helena Annabel".
"Her structure of sound and words is transformed into an acoustic atmosphere which breaks down barriers in all directions. This is not, in fact, dance. Eva Weissmann creates convincing movements with intensity and preciseness."
Dance Ballet Aktuell
"Experienced theatre maker Eva Weissmann has created a piece that is light, dada, engaging, and enigmatic all at once."
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