She She Pop will create a canon of moments from the audience’s perspective – an unlimited list of unmissable moments from the memories of those present. Of all the events we have seen on stage, which ones do we not want to forget? Which ones do we have to talk about? What was so fascinating and sublime, or painful or plausible, liberating or amazing that we need to remember it?
Canon is both a ritual and a revue. And it is a collective historiography, especially for those productions that are outside the dramatic canon, of which nothing seems to remain after their performance except for the memories of those involved in their choreography, performance or happenings.
The list that we will create will represent a ‘Canon from below’ with no censorship whatsoever. May your spirit be blown in any direction. Any suggestion that attests to a charismatic event is valid. Canon will work with every means of transience produced by these art forms themselves. The evening ranges from simple re-telling to an attempted reenactment. How do bodies, gestures, organisms, space, objects, architecture and installations, rhythm, duration, voices, language, sound and music survive? In the memories of those who have experienced them, in their re-enactment. The vagueness and distortion of memory is just as essential here as the joy of the unforgotten moment.
Canon will be developed by She She Pop and other artists: selected guests from the independent arts scene have been invited to participate in this collective ritual of remembering. But audience members who happen to be present at the show are invited to participate too by writing down their own memories of special moments in theatre. Thus, Canon will develop into a new and spontaneous community performance every evening. The relationship between mutual obligation and commitment between stage and audience, as is often found in contemporary theatre forms, is mirrored, celebrated and used in Canon. The community evolves only through the invocation of a common Canon. In the moment of being represented, an acute experience combines with the formation of stories and history, the intention of distortion for one’s own purposes – resulting in the fiction of history. In the theatre, a “memory space” emerges from the recollections of those present and from the collective anticipation of the new.
By and with: Sebastian Bark, Johanna Freiburg, Fanni Halmburger, Lisa Lucassen, Mieke Matzke, Ilia Papatheodorou, Berit Stumpf and guest performance with a changing cast.
Guest performance Berlin with a changing cast: Antonia Baehr, Daniel Belasco Rogers, Jean Chaize, Martin Clausen, Brigitte Cuvelier, Sean Patten, Tatiana Saphir, Leicy Valenzuela, Zelal Yesilyurt.
Guest performance Frankfurt: Irene Klein, Joana Tischkau, Leander Ripchinsky.
Guest performance Munich: Sybille Canonica, Maxwell McCarthy, Lavinia Nowak.
Costumes and props: Lea Søvsø. Light Design: Michael Lentner. Sound Design: Jeff McGrory. Sets: Sandra Fox. Choreographies: remembered and reinterpreted by Constanza Macras. Artistic Advice: Valeria Germain, Alisa Tretau, Laia Ribera. Support Costumes: Jana Donis. Support Choreography: Miki Shoji. Trainee: Magdalena Hofmann, Natasha Borenko. Technical Director: Sven Nichterlein. Production: Anne Brammen. PR, Communication: ehrliche arbeit – freelance office for culture. Freelance Communication Support: Tina Ebert. Financial Administration: Aminata Oelßner. Company Management: Elke Weber.
A production of She She Pop in Co-production with HAU Hebbel am Ufer Berlin, Kampnagel Hamburg, Künstlerhaus Mousonturm, FFT Düsseldorf and Münchner Kammerspiele.
Funded by the City of Berlin – Department for Culture and Europe and Hauptstadtkulturfonds.
(…) The canon in Kanon is essentially a show of non-dramatic, non-representational stage works. Moments Christoph Schlingensief, Johann Kresnik, Pina Bausch, William Forsythe (dance features a great deal, adapted with choreographic support by Constanza Macras) are summoned. Forced Entertainment and other British groups are admired, along with Susanne Kennedy’s “Selbstmord-Schwestern” and Milo Rau’s “Die Wiederholung.” Lea Søvsø’s fancy costumes pay homage to pop-like allusions to “patron saints of action art” – from Joseph Beuys to Valie Export and Yves Klein. (…)
The evening has a sentimental charm. She She Pop (in the premiere: Sebastian Bark, Johanna Freiburg and Ilia Papatheodorou) and guests (in the premiere: Brigitte Cuvelier, Sean Patten, Leicy Valenzuela, Zelal Yesilyurt) describe their personal “unforgettable” theatre moments as they happened while the other perfomers in the background try out an emphatically amateurish visualisation of the moment using scant costumes and handicraft utensils. Soon it takes on the atmosphere of Robert Lembke’s “Was bin Ich”, as you secretly puzzle (and congratulate yourself if you quickly recognise one or other of the productions). (…)
In this episode, Ilia Papatheodorou recalls her first encounter with American hardcore performer Ann Liv Young in “Cinderella” in January 2011. (…) Now, eight years later, Papatheodorou re-enacts the situation, scrabbling about in the audience, indulging in moments of Young-like forcefulness. Meanwhile Sean Patten (who usually works for the Gob Squad collective) has to urinate in a bucket. Young actually craps at this point, but they didn’t manage to reproduce with one hundred per cent faithfulness. Papatheodorou reflects on the system of submission in Ann Liv Young’s theatre: “She shoved us under her artistic yoke.” Wonderfully put.
Christian Rakow, Nachtkritik, 27.10.17
It is a family album in which She She Pop and their followers flip through. As cosy as a pub quiz for post-dramatic theatre, which is currently being honoured by theatre academic Hans-Thies with a festival at the HAU. The group’s recognisable focus is on the warm heart of the performative, which, in its exposure of material and construction, makers and the made, often provides more potential for identification than the fluid representational techniques of classical drama.
Janis El-Bira, Berliner Zeitung, 23.11. 2019
The evening gets exciting when the spectators are invited to tell each other their own “goose-bump moments” of theatre. The memories told on stage are almost always about moments when the fourth wall between the audience and the stage disappeared or was blown away – literally, during a performance in Avignon that went down in a thunderstorm, or in the story of Sebastian Bark, who remembers a performance of Jerome Bell’s “The Show Must Go On.” (…) Against national identity, or against a national educational canon. She She Pop (…) focuses (…) on sharing individual memories. On the way home I can’t get the question of my own personal theatre canon out of my head. I have become part of a collective process called “post-dramatic theatre”.
Gerd Brendel, Deutschlandfunk Kultur, 23.11.19
This review of individual experiences is undisputedly entertaining. The evening is – to borrow a word with which Lehmann described the multiple presence of post-dramatic theatre – “colourful.” Patrick Wildermann, Tagesspiegel, 24.11.19 The evening could also be called “Introduction to She She Pop’s methods” because it shows what a experiment in a theatrical arrangement can look like on stage. The focus is not on an overarching directorial concept, but on the process itself. (…) The questions it raises about the ephemeral nature of theatre and the associated difficulty of how to convey this are exciting and topical. In any case, the show makes you curious about some past theatre events. It’s just a pity we’ll never see them (again). Nora Auerbach, Die deutsche Bühne, 25.11.19 This canon is an entertaining retrospective of the past three decades and a revealing evening about theatre history (…)
Das Kulturblog, 25.11.19
It’s a show consisting of declarations of love, made decisively as a collective. (…) in fact, many great things happen over the space of two hours, during which the most successful German-language performer’s collective celebrates the power of the performing arts. Because the (…) actors (…) not only use strange props, but also leave plenty of room for exaggeration, grotesqueness and drama when re-enacting the scenes they remember. And at the bottom of it all is the question: why. (…) It is particularly fortunate for the Frankfurt version that Irene Klein, a dancer who worked with the Frankfurt Ballet for 20 years, is also on stage. Because Constanze Macras (…) has worked with She She Pop on their memories of choreography, including a very funny recollection of a Pina Bausch move. She has also recreated a fast-paced, demanding sequence from “In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated” for non-dancers. And it is funny in a particularly touching way when, between slightly crooked poses, Klein’s body demonstrates that he remembers all these movements – just as we remember our best theatre moments. A delightful collective experience (…).
Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, 25.01.20
In Canon, She She Pop attempt the impossible: to repeat the live moment of sometimes decades-old productions and to briefly outwit the ephemeral, which is so firmly woven into the DNA of the theater, for the sake of magic. This joint journey through time, space and feelings is a great, blissful declaration of love for the magic of theater.
Christian Lutz, Süddeutsche Zeitung, 10.02.20