Dedicated to Inger Landsted
The tree of History grows vigorously and dead. Around it, child-soldiers and praying monks dance together with warlords, a wrathful mother, and the daughter of a poet who, as a child, dreamed of flying away with her father.
Two story-tellers introduce and comment upon characters and events: in the Syrian desert two Yazidi monks plant a pear tree to call back the birds that have disappeared; in Nigeria a mother rests under the shadow of the tree of forgetfulness holding in her arms the head of her daughter hidden in a gourd; a European warlord explains the necessity for ethnic cleansing to an African warlord who performs a human sacrifice to make his army of child soldiers invulnerable before leading them into battle; a girl plays with her dolls around the tree her father planted when she was born, wondering how birds see the earth from the air.
The tree of History finally bends under the weight of fruit and offers a home to the birds that are flying over the heads of the spectators. But what kind of birds are they?
Actors: Luis Alonso, Parvathy Baul, I Wayan Bawa, Kai Bredholt, Roberta Carreri, Elena Floris, Donald Kitt, Carolina Pizarro, Fausto Pro, Iben Nagel Rasmussen, Julia Varley
Scenic space: Luca Ruzza, Odin Teatret
Lighting designer: Lucca Ruzza, OpenLab Company
Lighting adviser: Jesper Kongshaug
Tree conception and realisation: Giovanna Amoroso and Istvan Zimmermann, Plastikart
Software programming: Massimo Zomparelli
Costumes and props: Odin Teatret
Poster: Barbara Kaczmarek
Musical director: Elena Floris
Technical director: Fausto Pro
Puppets: Niels Kristian Brinth, Fabio Butera, Samir Muhamad, I Gusti Made Lod
Dolls' heads: Signe Herlevsen
Photos: Rina Skeel
Dramaturg: Thomas Bredsdorff
Literary adviser: Nando Taviani
Text: Odin Teatret
Director's assistants: Elena Floris, Julia Varley
Director: Eugenio Barba
First performed on 19 September 2016, Holstebro, Denmark
Duration: 80 min. (without a break)
Languages used during the performance: Danish, Italian, English, Bengali and Balinese (without subtitles)
The performance is not suitable for children under the age of 12
Produced by Nordisk Teaterlaboratorium (Holstebro, Denmark), The Grotowski Institute and Wroclaw European Capital of Culture 2016 (Wroclaw, Poland), National Theatre (Budapest, Hungary). With the support of Holstebro Kommune, Statens Kunstfond – Projektstøtteudvalget for Scenekunst.
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