A man, a woman, a living room. In this setting the audience become witnesses to the noxious routines of a relationship in which intimacy invariably leads to brutality. The spiral of violence continues for over five hours: distressing and apparently inescapable.
During opening hours, you may enter or leave at any time.
Botschaft am Worringer Platz
Special on 19.06., 20:00-22:00:
Audience talk in English with the artist and Eva Inderfurth, social worker, frauenberatungsstelle düsseldorf e.V. Chaired by Wilma Renfordt, dramaturg Impulse Theater Festival
As source material Markus Öhrn has used accounts of genuine cases of domestic abuse that came before the courts. On stage, however, no names, places or times are mentioned. Both performers are silent underneath their giant papier maché masks and all that can be heard are sloppy kisses, sobbing, a sudden intake of breath in shock – while in the background a pianist continues play a grand piano, apparently unaffected by the proceeding.
Both characters are abstractions, standing for a number of individual cases. What they represent is not an individual person, but more a pattern that operates in many relationships irrespective of class and location. They show a man and a woman who are fulfilling acquired gender roles and can find no escape from their fateful togetherness. A new cycle of violence, regret and reconciliation begins over and over again. Artificial blood seeps out of the papier maché and is wiped away — until the next blow. The fact that it is coming is certain, when is not.
The audience is free to leave this tense situation at any time and can come and go as it wishes. The couple, on the other hand, appears to be imprisoned for ever in its increasingly blood-stained home.
Direction, stage, concept: Markus Öhrn
With: Jakob Öhrman, Janet Rothe
Pianist: Arno Waschk
Masks: Makode Linde
Contact for touring enquiries: Markus Öhrn, markus.ohrn[a]institutet.eu
A co-production between Wiener Festwochen, Institutet and Wiesbaden Biennale 2018. With support from Kulturrådet / Swedish Arts Council.
Markus Öhrn studied Fine Art at the Konstfack in Stockholm. He directed his first theatre production in 2010 working together with the companies Institutet and Nya Rampen — ‘Conte dʼAmour’ was awarded the prize for best production at the Impulse Theater Festival 2011. Since 2015 most of his work has been site-specific and process-orientated. For the Santarcangelo Festival he founded a black metal noise band made up of Italian housewives and for the Volksbühne am Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz he devised a performative Advent calendar. Markus Öhrn lives and works in the little village of Niskanpää in northern Sweden and in Berlin.