“We (the people from around here) with our sad experiences and constant fear, fear that leaves us quite incapable of resistance; are frightened at the slightest creak of a floorboard and when one of us takes fright, the next one instantly becomes afraid as well, even without knowing exactly why. How is it possible to judge things clearly in such conditions.” – F. Kafka, The Castle

Within the deluge of images of which we are a part – even before we are aware of it – we are tested like any other machine or object found across all sectors of eco- nomic and social life. Our bodies have become objects of surveillance, able to be filmed and recorded. Even so, all the mysteries of human motivation have yet to be revealed. If the failure of 20th cen- tury political movements has transfor- med them into aesthetic objects, recent liberation movements demonstrate that a wind of revolt still blows in the depths of human beings, one capable of cha- sing away those who would compel the silence of misery.

Walter Benjamin tells us, “Organising pessimism signifies nothing other than discovering a space in political action that is reserved one hundred per cent for images and that this image-space can no longer be explored through contemplation.” An artist must be set to work on the crucial areas of this image-space. And again, raise the question of how we are politically implicated within the context of contemporary art.

The piece that we are preparing builds on different writings and images that have informed our reflections: the writings of Annie Lebrun and Juri Armanda , those of Roland Gori , the docu- mentaries HyperNormalisation or The century of self by Adam Curtis, as well as the documen- tary The Manufacture of Consent by Jimmy Leipold, which retraces the methodology of Edward Barnays, the architect of public relations and a grand manipulator of public opinion, as revealed in his book Propaganda. Although the subject is quite dramatic it will be treated dramaturgically with humour, inspired by B. Brecht and the great comic actor Karl Valentin.

These writings and films have contributed to shedding light on a very real phenomenon, one in which we are currently engulfed: the ever-growing amount of information that informs our supposedly free choice-making, revealing our tendency to follow prevailing points of view (the majority), to opt for what is prescribed to us and fabricated through advertising and to accept the colonisation of our minds by media or social network “influencers”. We have a great capacity to adjust what we think in relation to what is insidiously demanded of us to think, in agreement with popular opinion!

«You have to choose: to rest or to be free» – Thucydide

Conception and design
Maguy Marin

A play for 7 performers
In close collaboration with Kostia Chaix, Kaïs Chouibi, Chandra Grangean, Lisa Martinez, Alaïs Marzouvanlian, Lise Messina, Rolando Rocha

Light design Alexandre Béneteaud
Set design Albin Chavignon
Sound design Victor Pontonnier
Scenic elements and documentary research Paul Pedebidau

Reggio Parma Festival
Maison de la Danse
La Comédie de Saint Etienne – CDN
Théâtre de la Ville de Paris
Cndc Angers
Le Gymnase CDCN Roubaix Hauts-de-France

La Compagnie Maguy Marin is subsidized by le Ministère de la Culture – DRAC Auvergne- Rhône-Alpes, la Ville de Lyon, la Région Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes and receives financial support from l’Institut français for projects abroad.
National and international diffusion A Propic – Line Rousseau and Marion Gauvent International diffusion DLB Spectacles – Thierry Bevière

Photo: Davide Ragusa

For more information, presmap, riders and financial conditions please contact Line Rousseau or Marion Gauvent