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  • Theatre
  • SPRING coproduction
  • NL premiere

All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace

Date
Tue 28 May 2024 19:30
Wed 29 May 2024 20:30
Location
Theater Kikker Grote Zaal
Duration
60 min
Language
Language no problem
Country
Netherlands/Belgium
Price
€18,- / €15,-
Themes
Performing speculations, New technologies, Staging climate
Edition
SPRING 2024
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This performance features stroboscopic lighting and smoke effects.

Machines, medicine, algorithms: many new technologies seem aimed at social control or the disciplining of labour, rather than giving us new forms of freedom. In All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace, Ezra Veldhuis and Bosse Provoost explore freedom and unfreedom in relation to technology, by staging Richard Brautigan’s 1967 poem of the same name.

I like to think

    (and the sooner the better!)

of a cybernetic meadow

where mammals and computers

live together in mutually

programming harmony

like pure water

touching clear sky.

 

I like to think

    (right now please!)

of a cybernetic forest

filled with pines and electronics

where deer stroll peacefully

past computers

as if they were flowers

with spinning blossoms.

 

I like to think

    (it has to be!)

of a cybernetic ecology

where we are free of our labors

and joined back to nature,

returned to our mammal

brothers and sisters,

and all watched over

by machines of loving grace.

 

(Richard Brautigan)

 

Ezra Veldhuis and Bosse Provoost explore freedom and unfreedom in relation to technology, by staging Richard Brautigan’s 1967 poem All Watched Over By Machines Of Loving Grace.

Machines, medicine, algorithms: many new technologies seem aimed at social control or the disciplining of labour, rather than giving us new forms of freedom. Does this mean Brautigan’s dream is dead? Are we already living in a totally perverted realisation of it? Or does the freedom promised in his dream still hold potential? 

The performance oscillates between utopia and scepticism, between ecstasy and disillusionment: we see a “cybernetic ecology” in which it is not always clear whether the entanglements between people, materials and devices are symbiotic or conflictual. The light seems to want to deceive and hypnotise, the music asks us to trust and let go. The question is not whether we are entangled, but how we suffer, dance and waver within the entanglement.

At last I am free, I can hardly see in front of me!

https://hiros.be/en/artist/ezra-veldhuis-bosse-provoost/ 

https://ezraveldhuisbosseprovoost.com

Long Table Talk

After this performance at 21:00 the Long Table Talk: Staging Climate will take place in Theater Kikker.

"'Theatre-makers' is a restricting term here, because Provoost and Veldhuis do not tell stories with their performances, but bring their spectators into often wordless situations in which - through intense use of space, light, sound and scenography - they make something tangible. That 'something' is always open to individual interpretation, which does not mean that the performances are non-committal - they simply refuse to impose a fixed narrative"

Evelyne Coussens, Theaterkrant 

This performance is made possible by:

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Artist

Ezra Veldhuis

Artist

Bosse Provoost

Credits

Concept, lighting and scenography: Ezra Veldhuis & Bosse Provoost 

Choreography: Nathan Ooms, Bosse Provoost, Ezra Veldhuis 

Performers: Estefanía Álvarez Ramírez, Jayson Batut, Nathan Ooms 

Costume design & objects: Carly Rae Heathcote 

Sound design: Benne Dousselaere 

Execution set: Sibran Sampers 

Technical coordination: Wim Bernaers 

Outside eye: Marc Vanrunxt  

Internship dramaturgy: Cesar Vromman 

Production: Hiros 

 

Co-production: C-TAKT, NEXT Festival, auawirleben Festival, Kunstenwerkplaats, SPRING Performing Arts Festival, CAMPO, Per Podium, Kraagsteen 

 

With the support of: Kunstencentrum BUDA, De Grote Post, Le Bamp, STUK, Kunst/Werk, Stad Gent, the Flemish government, taxshelter of the Belgian Federal Government via Ufund

 

Photo credits: Laura Van Severen

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