Agenda

2013

April 5 - 7

premiere | MC93 | Bobigny [France]

2013

March 15 - 16

Centro Cultural de Belém - CCB | Lisbon [Portugal]

2013 | THE TEMPEST

In 2010 we performed the debut of A Midsummer Night’s Dream in this auditorium at the Centro Cultural de Belém, based on the eponymous play by Shakespeare and the semi-opera The Fairy Queen by Henry Purcell. Another work by Purcell, The Tempest or The Enchanted Island, also has links to a Shakespeare play, as a comic version of The Tempest which was a resounding commercial success during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. A viewer recounted his impression on the play’s debut thus: “The theatre was completely full, the King and court were all present, and the play was the most ingenuous that I have ever seen.”

We are taking this lost piece as our starting point, along with all of the others that have existed (or not existed), throwing ourselves into the tempests. Featuring the same elements as A Midsummer Night’s Dream (music, video, actors, singers and visual artists), but arranged in a different way, this musical, with music inspired by Purcell and composed and arranged by Xinobi and Moullinex, is a continuation. The Tempest is, therefore, adrift, like an island that is actually a boat, looking for the unknown place from where it set sail. It is searching for the right colour (although there is no sense of right), the correct room (although there is no correctness), another performance (although there is no other), and the tempest (who?). Without an aim and without means. Searching just for the sake of it.

The truth is that the search is just as artificial as the performance or the boat or the island. It is an off-performance (or a show-off, perhaps), like sand thrown in the eyes; in other words, an experience. And a pretext to repeat tempests. However, we do not know what came first – the pretext or the outcome. Yet as The Tempest invents its own critique, the order does not matter, just like everything else. They are all accidents, just like this text that you are reading. Accidents after accidents, sentences after sentences announcing their content, promising the end (which does not exist).

And by the way, if people were to ask you, you could say that The Tempest was the performance that never happened, the discourse of a group that does not feel comfortable with the idea of an object in art, who believe that performances are to be seen as cognitive experiences and nothing more than a chance to short-circuit the world and the things within it. You could claim to have witnessed the description of a performance, without the original performance itself. “That is what they always wanted to do, but they are still unable to do it.” You could say something like that. Or you could say nothing at all, because the performance has already said it all. After all, the performance is over. The performance never existed. The end.

 

 

A performance by Teatro Praga
Based on William Shakespeare’s The Tempest and Henry Purcell’s The Enchanted Island
Text and creation | Pedro Penim, André e. Teodósio, J.M.Vieira Mendes
Original score | Xinobi & Moullinex
Musical arrangements | Carlos Clara Gomes
Cast | Joana Barrios, Diogo Bento, André Godinho, Cláudia Jardim, Diogo Lopes, Patrícia da Silva, André e. Teodósio, Vicente Trindade, Daniel Worm d’Assumpção
Vocal director | Rui Baeta
Soloists | Rui Baeta (Baritone) and Sandra Medeiros (I Soprano)
Choir | Ana Margarida Encarnação (II Soprano), Cristina Repas (Mezzo-soprano), João Francisco (Tenor)
Video | André Godinho
Set design | Bárbara Falcão Fernandes
Light design | Daniel Worm d’Assumpção
Light assistant | Marta Fonseca

Choreography | Vicente Trindade
Historic costumes | António de Oliveira Pinto
Costume design | Joana Barrios
Guest artists | Vasco Araújo, Catarina Campino, Javier Nuñez Gasco, João Pedro Vale
Video team | Joana Frazão, Salomé Lamas
Photography | Paulo Martins, Alípio Padilha
Boom operator | Nuno Mourão
Sound design | Jorge Imperial
Production | Elisabete Fragoso, Filipa Rolaça

Video