Verdensteatret are currently working on a new production that will premiere as a live performance at Oslo’s Henie Onstad Art Centre during the Ultima Festival. In this brand new work Verdensteatret explore ideas about geological time and attention fatigue. As they put it: ‘There has never been so much past as there is right now.’
In November 2016, the Verdensteatret collective went on a research trip to the Mekong Delta in Vietnam, a location they first visited ten years ago. Their research, in a place they were already familiar with, was particularly focused on the nature of repetition, and they began questioning whether repetition is even possible.
In this new piece, Verdensteatret will create a series of elaborate audio-visual compositions – generated via an electronic feedback system – designed to absorb the audience into the performance space. Inspired by the immense span and slow unfolding of geological time, the material acts as a kind of sedimentation process, drawing attention to slow changes and the way physical objects can affect their surroundings over extremely long time spans.
As well as being an incredible experience, new Verdensteatret production is always considered an important event in the arts calendar. At Ultima 2014 they premiered the acclaimed Broen over Gjørme (Bridge Over Mud), about which Klassekampen’s critic wrote: ‘The group transforms its stage… into a dramatic body, pulsating between its visual and audiovisual elements, and all the fragments that float by have a certain dreamlike expression.’ In the same year they received the coveted honorary Hedda Award (Norway’s most important theatre prize).
This new work will undoubtedly provide one of the highlights of Ultima’s 2017 programme.