as usual, we published the programme before the summer break. Actually, this was the first „normal“ procedure within our preparations for the festival, and it did not in any way mean that we are returning to a pre-Corona reality. The format of the festival as such, with its lavish abundance, already came under discussion before the pandemic. At the same time, however, (international) exchange, impressions, and controversies from all parts of the world have never seemed to be so important as they are now. The word „festival“ comes from „festivity – meaning a celebration“ – but what can we celebrate – what is there to celebrate right now?
SPIELART 2021 will be familiar and new at the same time. Two co-curators will enrich the festival with their specially developed projects. On the second weekend, Julian Warner will deal with the phenomenon of GLOBAL ANGST in an artistic conference, as well as with a pageant and a ritual in the public arena – a venture that will reach far into urban society. In the culture centre Köşk, Eva Neklyaeva will create a space in which the aspects of the topic „smell“ can be experienced in different formats throughout the duration of the festival.
In the light of the inequality between the countries of the Global South and the Western Hemisphere, which has recently emerged more distinctly because of the pandemic, we considered it indispensable to continue conceiving SPIELART as an international festival. The intensive, common deliberations, which we had during the first lockdown, on the question of how this world-wide crisis will, or will have to, change international cooperation – a question which we will investigate in a conference on the last weekend – gave rise to some curatorial work performed by three artists. In their digital project REST OF THE STRUGGLE, Mallika Taneja and her companions will develop strategies as to how artistic practice as part of our day-to-day life can heal and strengthen us for the ongoing political struggles. Here, they turn the classical audience situation of international festivals around: all the artists involved come from different parts of India and participate from home, while a global audience is addressed. Boyzie Cekwana and Ogutu Muraya initiated mentoring projects in the framework of which they accompany productions of five selected artists from the first idea to the premiere. For Ogutu Muraya, who is a storyteller himself, writing takes centre stage, Boyzie Cekwana focuses on the engagement of the artists with their respective local environments. In the framework of a new edition of NEW FREQUENCIES, both projects will be shown on the last weekend along with further productions.
Another self-imposed task of SPIELART has always been to depict current artistic developments. We will show the world premiere of a digital performance of the South African Bubblegum Club, as well as works by collective punktlive, Forced Entertainment and Raquel Meseguer Zafe, which have already been widely discussed. And there will be Theatre at Home, like MONNULA by Tamara Cubas and an evolution of Mats Staub’s DEATH AND BIRTH IN MY LIFE.
Of course, we are also planning a rich performance programme at well-known as well as new venues. In addition to familiar artists like nora chipaumire, Eisa Jocson, Wen Hui, Nadia Beugré, Nástio Mosquito or Sankar Venkateswaran, this also includes productions by Amanda Piña, Satoko Ichihara, Okwui Okpokwasili, Ülkü Süngün or Alessandro Sciarroni. Together with HochX, we will present Taigué Ahmed’s new work, THE DRYING PRAYER, and in this connection, we will deal with the topic of climate justice discursively. Non-anthropocentric styles of narration will be developed by Manuela Infante and Franziska Angerer. The dissolution of borders, very specifically national ones, but (also) those with respect to queer thinking of spaces and identities, will play a role.
A lot will happen. We do not have all the answers (yet), but we want to try out a lot of things. One of them will be a different way to celebrate. Be a part of it!
Artistic Director and Festival Management
on behalf of the SPIELART Team
For the theatre project CRIPTONITE - BE INSPIRED! the SPIELART Theatre Festival is looking on behalf of the artists for a person with a disability or chronic illness who would like to gain (new) experience in the field of theatre and performance. No matter if you have stage experience or not - would you like to create your own short performance with the support of a coach and take part in a production of this year's SPIELART Festival? CRIPTONITE is a crip-queer theatre project by Zurich-based artists Edwin Ramirez and Nina Muehlemann. The performances will be shown on 30 + 31.10.21 at the LUISE cultural centre in Munich.
Your performance can be in the fields of dance / theatre / drag / comedy / performance art / ...?, and we will connect you with an established disabled artist who will help you to implement or deepen your ideas for this performance. A few days before the show there will be a rehearsal room and support from the CRIPTONITE team. Your participation in the project will be compensated. An idea sketch is enough as a starting point, your contribution does not have to be concrete. You can also participate with an existing performance that will be adapted during the rehearsal process.
•You define yourself as a disabled or chronically sick person.
•It doesn't matter if you have little or no stage experience and would like
to gain experience in that area, or if you have already realised your own
stage work and would like to develop further- both are possible
•It is possible to participate with an already existing performance which
will then be adapted during the rehearsal process or just with a sketch of
an idea (can be vague)
.•The idea is to create a short performance of about 10 minutes.
•Availability (by mutual agreement) in Munich between 26.6.-31.10.21
If you are interested or would like to know more, please contact Wolfram Sander from SPIELART Theaterfestival (firstname.lastname@example.org; phone: 089. 287236 14) with a short description of who you are and your ideas for a performance.
Closing date: 25.09.2021
We will decide quickly after the closing date if and when we will meet you on Zoom to proceed further. We will inform you in any case.
The project A CRASHCOURSE IN CLOUDSPOTTING by theatre maker Raquel Meseguer Zafe explores neurodiversity, invisible disabilities like chronic pain or chronic exhaustion, and how we navigate the world differently. The project aims to reframe rest and horizontality as creative acts. We invite local residents from Munich and its surroundings to use our bespoke app to communicate their rest (anonymously) with our audience during performances. The project will take place during the SPIELART theatre festival Munich between 24th and 26th October 2021.
Participants are also invited to a workshop with Raquel Meseguer Zafe on 17th September 2021 between 17.00-18.30 or on 1st October 2021 between 11.00-12.30. Moreover, we invite local residents to share a story about a time they tried to rest in public. These stories will contribute to our growing archive. We are looking forward to inscriptions to the workshop. Please send an email to email@example.com until 25th September. We will get back to you after the application deadline via email. Manon Haase also collects stories about times you tried to rest in public under the same email address.
About Raquel Meseguer Zafe
Theatre practitioner Raquel Meseguer Zafe is the foundress and artistic directress of the Unchartered Collective, a small group of creative minds from Bristol who all suffer from chronic pain. She herself has been living with chronic pain for 14 years. To be able to travel or take part in events without triggering a flare-up, she started to lie down in public in 2015. This lead to different reactions, she faced resistance in some instances or was asked to leave. When she lay down in the Southbank Centre, London, in 2016, she triggered a security alert. Since 2016, Raquel Meseguer Zafe has been developing projects and aesthetics which understand differences as a creative tool. She supports The Resting Spaces Network, a movement of artists who demand the provision of resting spaces or horizontal event concepts for the inclusion of people with invisible disabilities. Through her projects and conversations, she wants to put the conventions of public space into question and promote a new way of thinking for its use.
WUNDER by Christiane Huber - 13. August 2021 in Altötting
Every year, the upper Bavarian pilgrimage site Altötting attracts approximately a million pilgrims from all over the world. The reason for this is the Miraculous Image of the Black Madonna, a 65 cm tall wooden statue, which came to the Chapel of Grace in Altötting in the late 13th century. In the feminist, theatrical happening WUNDER (WONDER), the director Christiane Huber, who grew up in the district of Altötting, wants to investigate how the religious symbolism can be reinterpreted in a contemporary way. Together with international performers and artists, this site and the icon are to be recharged with diverse, young, and queer perspectives. The performance examines the roots as well as the infrastructure of the ritual and goes down into the underground car park underneath the Chapel in which the participants perform a choreography of going on a pilgrimage. In a sound installation, the miracles and the history of the icon reverberate in order to change the frequency of the site temporarily. In WUNDER (WONDER), sounds of church bells, Christian renaissance music and hifi sounds mix religious symbolisms with current issues and investigate the body in relation to public space. The performers practise and dream of past, present and future miracles and transform new conceptual images of community into reality.
The performative sound installation in Altötting is followed by the performance WE CALL WONDERS, which will be premiered in the urban context in Munich at SPIELART.