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fABULEUS / Michiel Vandevelde: Paradise Now (1968 – 2018). 31.08.2018. Sophiensaele, Tanz Im August, Berlin.

13 teenagers who, writhing and falling, undressing and flashing, brawling in silence and screaming at the top of their lungs, speak for a generation faced with political turmoil – in this case, I feel the need to take the role of the diplomat.

You could say that the reenactment of politically loaded photographs has been done before and you could notice that the never-ending climax went on for so long that the tension dropped entirely to the point that it became obnoxious and the viewer became bored; or you could see it as an interesting method of exploring a state of heightened tension without release, and what that does to both the performers and the viewers. You could be blown away by the directness of the text and the way it penetrated the space like arrows; or you could notice how it was extremely constructed and rather questionable how much the performers had written themselves, or even believed in it themselves, and whether it was perhaps the voice of the choreographer that was posing as the voice of these young people and in doing so, stifling them. You could wonder more about the input of these teenagers and whether they were perhaps being used as a means to attract attention, rather than actually investigating what they would fight for, in this day and age; or you could see it as the bold declaration of a sexually liberated generation bound to a political reality that is so heavy that they are in need of an outlet, a resurgence of rage to fully express their fear in facing, and having the responsibility to shape, our uncertain future.

Controversial.

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