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The Ministry of Mundane Mysteries

Did you hear? Our friends at SummerWorks in Toronto, Canada just announced their first summer presentation The Ministry of Mundane Mysteries: Summer Passport – a remote immersive experience from Outside the March!

We are thrilled to be partnering with SummerWorks and a community of organizations from around the world to spread the word that this special presentation is available internationally for the first time and entirely free to the public.

“Made-to-measure… executed so generously… [The Ministry] asked about my world, listened and then let me slip free of it, at 10-minute intervals.” -The New York Times

Finding yourself with a little time on your hands? Missing the uplift of live arts and culture? Is there a friend, a relative or a kid in your life who could use a daily dose of adventure? The meticulous mavericks at The Ministry of Mundane Mysteries have got you covered. This customized improvised narrative experience unfolds over a week’s worth of short daily phone calls, as our intrepid private investigators delve into your very own micro mystery using the investigative power of good conversation.

In Germany, Ministry agents will be available between 5pm-7pm / 9pm-11pm / 1am-3am. Tickets are going extremely quickly and can be booked, free of charge, at https://www.mundanemysteries.com/book-now-international

The Ministry’s Departments include:

·         The Misplaced Keepsakes Division

·         The Striking Coincidences ThinkTank

·         The Missed Connections Unit

·         The Paranormal Activity Task Force

At this moment of uncertainty, leave some of the pondering to the professionals as we work with you to untangle meaning from meaninglessness in the mundane.

There are only a limited number of appointments available for international investigations so be sure to book as soon as possible to get your daily dose of adventure during these unprecedented times!

Status (Chris Thorpe, UK)

We all have a nationality.

Or almost all of us.

Status is a show about someone who doesn’t want his any more. About running away from the national story you’re given. About who is responsible
for that story and what might happen to it if you give it up.

A globe-spanning journey of attempted escape, with songs along the way.

Directed by Rachel Chavkin who won a Tony award 2019 for Best Director of the Broadway musical Hadestown.

“… the words are eloquent, the music essential and powerful, and the performance full of a brilliant, prowling precision…”

Scotsman Fringe First Award Winner 2018

★★★★ Guardian ★★★★Time Out ★★★★The Scotsman★★★★The Stage

“With its magical-realist twists, the show has the strange pull of a Haruki Murakami novel, a dense and provocative barrage of reflections on a world in flux and our place within it.” Guardian
“As ever with Chris Thorpe, the words are eloquent, the music essential and powerful, and the performance full of a brilliant, prowling precision…” Scotsman
“…a searching, meticulously crafted, beautifully written piece, full of fragile conclusions about nationhood and privilege.” The Stage
“Status is a sophisticated, hugely confident show, meticulously crafted in Thorpe’s bracing monologue and directed with assurance and remarkable insight by Rachel Chavkin…” ArtsDesk
“…a scintillating, rigorous critique of something we often take for granted” Fest Mag
“Thorpe’s metaphysical road trip is grittily real, discomfortingly surreal, densely poetic” Edinburgh Reporter

Supported by the British Council, Goethe-Institut London, the Collaborative Touring Network and using public funding by the national lottery through Arts Council England.

Electra

ETB | IPAC & Berlin International Youth Theatre present

HARVARD COLLEGE STUDENTS with their production of the Sophocles classic, Electra, featuring Turkish TV star Ece Hakim.

A moving exploration of family and justice: Thousands of years ago, King Agamemnon ruled over Mycenae alongside his wife Clytemnestra and his four children Iphigenia, Electra, Orestes and Chrysothemis. All was well until Agamemnon’s sister in law, Helen, was taken to Troy. Now it was up to him to command the Greek armed forces into the infamous Trojan War which would claim many victims, including Agamemnon’s daughter Iphigenia, whom he sacrificed to the Gods in exchange for a strategic advantage. Upon his return, Agamemnon was murdered by his wife Clytemnestra and her lover. Electra, along with her dead father’s adviser, organized the kidnapping of her youngest brother Orestes, with the intent of training the young boy to one day avenge his father and murder his mother. Fifteen years later, Orestes returns to fulfill his murderous destiny…

This is the latest production by director Isaiah Michalski, actor of Lars Kraume’s award-winning film The Silent Revolution (Das schweigende Klassenzimmer). Michalski studies theater at Harvard College and is currently participating in the Schaubühne’s prestigious apprenticeship program.

The show will include an original score and live music by composer Marie Carroll.

 

We Keep Coming Back

by Selfconscious PRODUCTIONS (Toronto)

The (mostly) true story of an odyssey to Poland that a son and mother – both descendants of Polish-Jewish Holocaust survivors – took while accompanied by Katka Reszke (Polish-Jewish scholar and author of Return of the Jew) as their guide.

We Keep Coming Back is a story that Michael Rubenfeld set in motion and one that now involves a core co-creative team. It was a trip of return to the country of Michael and his mother’s cultural origin. While elemental in its urge to reunite mother and son, the work is also steeped with a contemporary politic. While seeking to understand Poland’s complicated history, the narrative takes an unexpected turn in discovering a vibrant contemporary world of Jewish life in Poland.

In her book Return of the Jew, Katka Reszke refers to this narrative as the ‘Generation Unexpected’ – this is a new generation of young Polish Jews who are mostly descendants of Jewish families who had hid their roots to survive both the pogroms and later, the Shoah. It was only after the fall of Communism in 1990, that it became safe to once again practice as a Jew in Poland. Subsequently, thousands of discoveries of unexpected Jewish histories have been made – and these stories are growing every day.

In the performance, the concept of ‘generation unexpected’ is realized both in the retelling of Katka’s own story of personal Jewish discovery, and by dissecting Poland’s confrontation with the energy of a revitalized Jewish narrative in Poland, and the deep roots of a North American antipathy towards Poland. To borrow from and broaden Katka’s term, ‘generation unexpected’ characterizes the surprising positions each of the four characters in We Keep Coming Back are revealed to hold. It also elementally sits at the nexus of unexpected results forever revealing themselves in the other generation.

We Keep Coming Back is presented in a visually and audio rich environment, incorporating video footage from the team’s research trips, archival material (photographs, maps), and live and recorded music. The creators play themselves.

It was developed in Toronto and Poland.

SELFCONSCIOUS PRODUCTIONS is the performance company of Canadian theater makers Michael Rubenfeld and Sarah Garton Stanley. They both share the belief that other people and being alive are both very confusing. They think that this is probably why they get along so well and also why they both remain interested in using the theatre as a place to explore how hard it is to do and be the things they most want to do and be. But they also believe that it is possible. So they keep trying. Their shows are The Book of Judith, The Failure Show, mothermothermother…, and We Keep Coming Back.

In cooperation with the 31st Jewish Culture Days Berlin

Palmyra

By Bertrand Lesca and Nasi Voutsas (London)

The Best of the 2017 Edinburgh Fringe at ETB | IPAC

Selected as one of The Guardian’s Top Ten Theatre Productions of 2017

“…a brilliant piece that reflects on Syria and the breakdown of relationships.” (★★★★ The Guardian)

Palmyra is an exploration of revenge, the politics of destruction and what we consider to be barbaric, inviting people to step back from the news and look at what lies beneath, and beyond, civilization.

★★★★★ “A thrilling tightrope walk of a show – tense yet cathartic, angry yet thoughtful. A five-star triumph.” – The To Do List
★★★★ “Weird, wonderful and strangely stressful.” – The Stage
★★★★ “It’s rare to see emerging artists with such a strong signature style … It’s a stressful watch, though, but sublime as well.” – Matt Trueman, What’s On Stage
“Bertrand Lesca and Nasi Voutsas have created a strong contender for “Best Piece of ‘Political Theatre,’ Edinburgh 2017. … Proper genius, this.” – Andrew Haydon, Postcards from the Gods
★★★★ “The show’s focus on broader issues emerging from Syria is its great strength. Challenging the audience constantly on our role in the conflict from spectators to global influencers, the piece covers a great amount in under an hour… Unsettling.” – The Reviews Hub

Mouthpiece

by Quote Unquote Collective

The Best of the 2017 Edinburgh Fringe at ETB | IPAC

Pick of the Edinburgh Fringe 2017 by The Guardian

“Truly astounding stuff.” ★★★★★ The Stage: Critics Pick Edinburgh 2017

In the wake of her mother’s death, Mouthpiece follows one woman, for one day, as she tries to find her voice. Interweaving a cappella harmony, dissonance, text and physicality, two performers express the inner conflict that exists within one modern woman’s head. Ranging from tender to merciless, with uncompromising precision, Mouthpiece magnifies a daughter’s contemplation of her mother and becomes a rigorous investigation of womanhood itself.

After Hollywood actor Jodie Foster and wife Alex Hedison had seen Mouthpiece in Toronto, they brought the play to the Odyssey Theater in Los Angeles: “Mouthpiece touches on every part of the female experience from birth to death using dance, music, and wicked humor with just a bathtub for scenery. The result is a new kind of feminist language which ignites pure, intravenous emotion. It’s impossible to describe and truly unforgettable.” JODIE FOSTER AND ALEXANDRA HEDISON
“There are no weak moments. Nostbakken and Sadava are powerhouses of performers: the standing ovation at the end is the topping on the cake, a well-deserved accolade to the formidable strength of this piece.” ★★★★★ Edinburgh Spotlight

 

AMY NOSTBAKKEN | CREATOR + DIRECTOR + PERFORMER
Co-artistic director of Quote Unquote Collective and core member of Theatre Ad Infinitum UK. An award-winning playwright, performer and composer, Amy has co-created numerous award-winning productions including Theatre Ad Infinitum’s First Class (2011), The Big Smoke (2012), Ballad Of the Burning Star (2013) and Bucket List (2016). Amy co-wrote, directed, composed and performs Mouthpiece, which is currently touring the world. In 2017 Mouthpiece was published by Coach House Books and adapted into a feature film. Currently Amy is developing Quote Unquote Collective’s six-woman play Now You See Her premiering in Toronto October 2018.

NORAH SADAVA | CREATOR + PERFORMER
Co-artistic director of Quote Unquote Collective, Norah is a Toronto-based actor and creator with a background in devised physical theatre. A graduate of the MFA program at the Dell’Arte International School of Physical Theatre, she has been involved in the writing and creation of new work with numerous companies both in Canada and internationally. Norah co-wrote, created and performs Mouthpiece, which is currently touring the world, was recently published by Coach House Books and is being adapted into a feature film. Currently Norah is developing Quote Unquote Collective’s six-woman play Now You See Her premiering in Toronto October 2018.

 

Celebration, Florida

GERMAN PREMIERE

Celebration, Florida is a town located right next to Disney World and was originally developed by Disney as a sort of idealistic, controlled, manicured, shiny version of what the perfect town should be. It is an actual town, but at the same time a simulation of a town. What does this town mean to Greg Wohead? What happens when we miss a person, place or time? What does the performance tell about the human connection?

Veering between reality and simulation, Celebration, Florida orbits around ideas of surrogacy; a stand-in to replace a person you miss, a re-creation of an experience you can’t stop thinking about, nostalgia for a place that never existed.

This is a show for anyone who has ever missed anyone or anything.

Greg Wohead will speak to you through two performers using pre-recorded audio and headphones. The performers will know almost nothing about the show and they will meet for the first time when they walk on stage.

Performed on Tuesday, March 13 by Carrie Getman and Andre Neely

Performed on Wednesday, March 14 by Quatis Tarkington and Saudia Young

“A moving tone poem on loss and retrieval”
★★★★ Stewart Pringle, The Stage
“A work of great sensitivity written with enviable grace and poise”
Simon Bowes, After the Lights Fade

Featuring a post-performance discussion on Tuesday, March 13 in collaboration with Theater Scoutings Berlin!

 

 

 

Commissioned by The Albany and developed at The Yard. Supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England.

Greg Wohead is a writer, performer and live artist originally from Texas and now working in London. He makes theatre performances, one-to-one pieces and audio works. His work has been seen at theatres and festivals in the UK, US and Europe including Battersea Arts Centre, London (UK), Bristol Old Vic (UK), Mayfest, Bristol (UK), Northern Stage, Newcastle (UK), Forest Fringe, Edinburgh (UK), Bios, Athens (Greece), Brighton Festival (UK), Fusebox Festival , Austin (USA) and ArtPower, San Diego (USA). He’s an Associate Artist at The Yard and Shoreditch Town Hall in London.

Bette Davis…“Fasten Your Seatbelts!”

A performance trip through the glorious ups and the dramatic downs of a Hollywood life

Bette Davis was one of Hollywood’s greatest stars. Between 1931 and 1989, she acted in more than a hundred films, won the Oscar twice and was nominated another eight times. Some of the greatest movies in motion picture history – Of Human Bondage, Jezebel, What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?, or All About Eve – are Bette Davis films. She was uncompromising, fought for better scripts, had no qualms about playing antagonistic characters and always wanted to be authentic. Davis was a living example that you can have a career and stay true to yourself – if you’re prepared to pay the price of loneliness. A life worthy of a movie.

“Bettina Lohmeyer as Bette Davis in ‘Fasten Your Seatbelts’ ignites into originality and pure entertainment. An evening of blazing theatrical fireworks. Brilliant – it soars!” Joe Franklin, Bloomberg Radio, New York City, 2014

In six scenes, Bette Davis…“Fasten Your Seatbelts!” highlights a life full of triumph and successes, love, tragedies and confrontations. Bettina Lohmeyer takes the audience to a duel with movie mogul Jack Warner in his office, to a cemetery in Maine, to a lonely home, back to shooting on set in Los Angeles, to the Oscar ceremony and finally to the last chapter in Bette Davis’ life…

A dream comes true: upon the invitation of U.S. director and producer Susan Batson, Bettina Lohmeyer developed, wrote and performed her play “Bette Davis… “Fasten Your Seatbelts!” in Batson’s studio theater in New York. After intense research, including interviews with Bette Davis’ contemporaries, Bettina Lohmeyer staged the Davis myth: hard as nails, quick-witted, assertive and just as uncompromising, vulnerable and full of humor.

Bettina Lohmeyer was an ensemble member at Maxim Gorki Theater for six years and also worked at Schauspielhaus Hannover, Staatstheater Mainz, and Schauspielhaus Graz. She has acted in numerous film and television productions, such as Der letzte Zeuge, SOKO Leipzig, Der Baader Meinhof-Komplex and in a continuous starring role in Hinter Gittern.
Pics: Barbara Braun | Film still: Bette Davis in Of Human Bondage (1934)

 

Nassim


“Dear performer. I want to show you something. Did you know, in Farsi my name is written like this:  ‘.ROUPNAMIELOS MISSAN si eman yM’ ? Did you know ‘Nassim’ means ‘breeze’ in Farsi?”

From Berlin-based Iranian playwright Nassim Soleimanpour comes an audacious theatrical experiment that explores the power of language to unite us in unknown, uncertain times.

No rehearsals. No preparation. Just a sealed envelope and an actor reading a script for the first time. Plus some tomatoes.

WINNER of the Fringe First Award at Edinburgh Fringe 2017

NASSIM follows Soleimanpour’s globally acclaimed White Rabbit Red Rabbit, which has been translated into over 25 different languages and performed over 1,000 times by names including Sinead Cusack, Ken Loach and Whoopi Goldberg including five performances at English Theatre Berlin | International Performing Arts Center in October 2013.

 “A strikingly gentle, humane and emotive consideration of the experience of an artist living and working in the diaspora.” | The Herald

“Emotionally charged theatrical experiment.” | The Stage

“An unusually vivid celebration of theatre’s liveness.” | The Guardian

“As he heightens the audience’s sense of complicity in his art, Soleimanpour makes a quietly persuasive case for theatre’s special power to foster empathy.” | London Evening Standard

Nassim Soleimanpour (playwright and performer) is an independent multidisciplinary theater maker best known for his multi award-winning play White Rabbit Red Rabbit. Nassim’s play Blank premiered in the UK at the Bush Theatre’s RADAR festival in 2015, also playing in Amsterdam and Utrecht with further performances all over the world including at the Edinburgh Fringe and in Argentina, Australia and India. Further plays include Blind Hamlet which premiered at LIFT Festival 2014 prior to a UK tour and productions in Bucharest and Copenhagen. Nassim now lives in Berlin and has been commissioned to write a new play for Teater Momentum (Denmark).
Pics: David Monteith-Hodge / Studio Doug

Am I Dead Yet? (Chris Thorpe & Jon Spooner / Unlimited Theatre)

Death is no longer a moment. It is a process. A process that can be reversed.

Two friends, talking (and singing) about what happens when we die, how we think about dying, and most importantly, how some of us might be brought back.

Performed by Unlimited founding members Jon Spooner and Chris Thorpe, Am I Dead Yet? is filled with stories and songs about death and dying and about how we don’t talk about it enough.

This new show from Unlimited Theatre, one of the most renowned British theatre companies, is inspired by research into contemporary developments in resuscitation science and made in collaboration with emergency care professionals.

“Vibrantly theatrical and typically absorbing” **** Independent
“Chris Thorpe and Jon Spooner’s electric view on the dying process will rewrite your expectations for your final end” **** The Stage
“An enjoyable, poignant cabaret piece about death in the distant and all-too-near future” The Guardian

We are very excited to welcome Chris Thorpe back to English Theatre Berlin | International Performing Arts Center following our work together on his scintillating solo performance, Confirmation, as part of Theatertreffen / Stückemarkt Revisited 2015.

Watch the trailer on YouTube:

Jon Spooner is a director, writer, performer, founder member and the artistic director of Unlimited. He has directed and performed in numerous Unlimited shows, including Fringe First winners Static (invited to English Theatre Berlin in 2002) Neutrino, Safety by Chris Thorpe (with the Crucible Theatre, Sheffield) and Zero Degrees & Drifting. Jon also co-writes and directs the annual Christmas show for the BBC’s CBeebies channel filmed live at a major UK theatre and then broadcast on CBeebies and BBC One.

Chris Thorpe is a founder member and a core artist with Unlimited, and also an artistic associate of Third Angel. As a solo performer, he is making a cycle of solo pieces called Eating Wasps and continues to collaborate with companies like Slung Low, RashDash and Soup Collective, with whom he wrote and recorded the piece The Bomb On Mutannabbi Street Is Still Exploding, which has been permanently installed at the Imperial War Museum North. Chris has won Fringe First Awards in 2011 (for The Oh Fuck Moment with Hannah Jane Walker) and 2014 for Confirmation. His durational theatrical experience, The Milk of Human Kindness was at the Royal Court in London in 2016. He recently wrote Chorus for The Iphegenia Quartet at the Gate Theatre, as well as a new piece, Victory Condition, for the Royal Court which will open in September 2017.

Director Amy Hodge’s credits include The Ethics of Progress for Unlimited Theatre, Our Big Land (Romany Theatre Company), The Rover (Hampton Court Palace), Romeo and Juliet (Theatre Uz, Uzbekistan for the British Council). She was Associate Director at Sherman Cymru from 2008 to 2011 and has also directed shows at the Tricycle, Young Vic, Orange Tree Theatre and West Yorkshire Playhouse. Amy was Studio Associate at the National Theatre (2013-14) and was the recipient of the 2007 Jerwood Directors Award.