33 TOURS ET QUELQUES SECONDES
During the effervescence of the Arab Spring a young militant commits suicide, but the deceased is not left to rest in peace. His empty room echoes with a whirlwind of messages from those left behind, buzzing on his telephone or his Facebook profile. A borderline experience without anyone onstage.
Can someone really disappear? In Lebanon during the effervescence of the Arab Spring, the young human rights militant Diyaa Yamout abruptly committed suicide, but the deceased was not left to rest in peace. He was constantly resuscitated and brought back to life as his empty room echoed with a thousand buzzing sounds, the ringing and chirping of the computer, telephone, television and answering machine. Posted on a large screen, his Facebook page was soon swamped to the point of vertigo, a whirlwind of messages from those left behind, leading to a clash of opinions on hotly debated issues such as the private and the social, the personal and the political, the difficulty of living and the freedom to die.
After making a strong impression at the FTA in 2005 with Biokhraphia and Looking for a Missing Employee, the iconoclastic Lebanese artists Lina Saneh and Rabih Mroué are back with a striking hybrid work that combines theatre with installation and performance art. Their new piece dispenses with the actor, yet radiates with a vibrant and troubling impression of presence. A borderline, radical experience.
PRODUCED BY RABIH MROUÉ + LINA SANEH
WRITTEN AND DIRECTED BY RABIH MROUÉ + LINA SANEH
GRAPHICS, ANIMATION AND SET DESIGN SAMAR MAAKAROUN
ASSISTANTS TO TECHNICAL CONCEPTION THOMAS KÖPPEL + SARMAD LOUIS
TRANSLATED BY ZIAD NAWFAL
DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY SARMAD LOUIS
COPRODUCTION KUNSTENFESTIVALDESARTS (BRUSSELS) + FESTIVAL D’AVIGNON + FESTIVAL DELLE COLLINE TORINESI (TURIN) + SCÈNE NATIONALE DE PETIT-QUEVILLY – MONT-SAINT-AIGNAN (ROUEN) + LA BÂTIE (GENEVA) + KAMPNAGEL (HAMBURG) + STEIRISCHER HERBST (GRAZ) + STAGE-HELSINKI THEATRE FESTIVAL + MALTA FESTIVAL (POZNAN) + THÉÂTRE DE L’AGORA, SCÈNE NATIONALE D’EVRY ET DE L’ESSONNE + ASSOCIATION LIBANAISE POUR LES ARTS PLASTIQUES ASHKAL ALWAN (BEIRUT)
THIS EVENT IS PART OF PRINTEMPS NUMÉRIQUE 2014 DE MONTRÉAL.
WRITTEN BY CATHERINE CYR
TRANSLATED BY NEIL KROETSCH
PREMIERED AT KUNSTENFESTIVALDESARTS, BRUSSELS, MAY 22, 2012
RABIH MROUÉ + LINA SANEH (BEIRUT)
Lina Saneh and Rabih Mroué were both born in Beirut, in 1966 and 1967 respectively, and embarked on a fruitful artistic collaboration in Lebanon after finishing theatre school. Adding or alternating duties as writers, actors and directors, the two artists work closely together on singular performance pieces that blur the boundaries between disciplines, poetically merging theatre, installations, performance art and video. They present works that are a direct reflection of the social and political realities of their country as they delve into the contradictions underlying Lebanese society. In the unexpected intertwining of documentary and fiction, they turn reality into narrative as they seek to reveal often hidden or unsuspected nuggets of truth.
Internationally renowned, the duo (each of whom has also developed an individual artistic practice) creates powerful, disturbing works that greatly surpass their given political context. Relentlessly questioning human actions and tearing down the limits of theatrical representation, their unclassifiable works have met with acclaim at several major European festivals. In 2005 they presented Biokhraphia at the FTA, a fierce yet playful autofiction at the intersection of the private and the social. That same year Rabih Mroué also presented Looking for a Missing Employee, a meticulous theatrical investigation of the phenomenon, widespread in Beirut, of people who have disappeared without a trace.
This year he will be presenting the lecture-performance piece The Pixelated Revolution at the FTA, a destabilizing solo on the creation and proliferation of images during the Syrian revolt.