A village in the heart of Europe. Sickles harvest the corn and feet trample it. We are witnessing a world which ends happily, amidst some weeping and some melancholy, but above all with an insane self-confidence.
It is a fascinating and sensuous village whose inhabitants are clothed in garments of the richest colours and textures, with ornamental hairstyles which are only to be seen in illustrations of ancient folklore or in books of fables. But this book of fables is plagued by war and modernity.
Kaosmos's subtitle is "The Ritual of the Door", a door which remains closed to those who wait a lifetime to enter it. We therefore expect a performance about divisions, about insurmountable walls. But there are no divisions, distinctions, points of orientation. There is no inside and outside, no "us" and "them", no "these" and "those". There is the door which is mobile, and the actors move it around from place to place, laying it flat on the ground like a box or a coffin, dragging it on their shoulders like a cross or standing it upright on its frame, dividing nothing from nothing. It is the negation of a door: with no house and no adjoining wall, it opens onto and separates in the abstract - or, if you prefer - fictitiously. Beside it, a peasant woman, looking like a village schoolteacher with spectacles on her nose, is vainly waiting to enter, as though the waiting, the entrances and exits, the comings and goings around that negation of a door, had a meaning. But they don't. Shutting in, shutting out are derisory expressions when you can bang the door and turn the handle as much as you like, but there is no inside and there is no outside. Order and Disorder, chaos and cosmos, they are all one: Kaosmos.
Created in Holstebro
Actors: Kai Bredholt, Roberta Carreri, Jan Ferslev, Tina Nielsen, Iben Nagel Rasmussen, Isabel Ubeda, Julia Varley, Torgeir Wethal, Frans Winther
Scenic space: Odin Teatret
Costumes: Pia Sanderhoff / Odin Teatret
Musical arrangment: Frans Winther, Jan Ferslev, Kai Bredholt
Dramaturgy and directing: Eugenio Barba
Assistant directors: Leo Sykes, Lluís Masgrau
Advisor: Ferdinando Taviani
Language: The actors speak in their own mother tongue
Number of spectators per performance: 190
223 performances from April 1993 to December 1996 (Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Denmark, France, Germany, Great Britain, Hungary, Italy, Mexico, Norway, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Uruguay, Venezuela)