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Theatre

Antigone in Molenbeek + Tiresias

Toneelhuis, Guy Cassiers

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Antigone in Molenbeek and Tiresias. A diptych.
In a double bill of monologues, director Guy Cassiers tells the story of Antigone, a young girl who says ‘no’ to the authorities, and then the story of the blind seer Tiresias, who during his lifetime has been both a woman and a man. 

Stefan Hertmans and the young English slam poet Kae Tempest rewrote these classic myths in a contemporary idiom and placed them in an urban context. 
In Antigone in Molenbeek (Hertmans), the protagonist, a Muslima, wants to bury her dead brother, an ISIS suicide bomber. The authorities refuse to release his body and Antigone cannot carry out her process of mourning. Ikram Aoulad plays the role of Antigone.
In Tiresias (Tempest), the identity of the protagonist slips from man into woman into blind seer. From their isolated positions, Antigone and Tiresias each expose the suppressed sexual, social and political prejudices in society. A monologue by Katelijne Damen.
Besides the visual technology, music also plays an important role. The two narratives, each in their own way, enter into a dialogue with String Quartet No. 15 by the Russian composer Dmitri Shostakovich. 
In June 2021 a French version of the performance will also be made: Antigone à Molenbeek + Tirésias, with the French actresses Ghita Serraj and Valérie Dréville.

Guy Cassiers worked with two generations of women in tackling two dramas about rebellious outsiders that turn out to be surprisingly fitting in today’s law and order society.

"Tiresias and Antigone are both outsiders who refuse to accept the restrictive political and sexual pigeonholes that patriarchal society imposes on them. As classic figures, they each in their own way offer a dissenting voice against dominant contemporary views. This is also why Toneelhuis director Guy Cassiers stages them together, as successive monologues with more or less the same scenography and the same soundtrack – String Quartet No. 15 by Dmitri Shostakovich."

Gilles Michiels in De Standaard *** , 3 October 2020

"Aoulad excels in using the camera to subtly portray her role.... Damen lets the timbre of her voice dance through the words. Her body dances along. Watching her perform is pure pleasure."

Els Van Steenberghe in Knack Focus *** , 13 October 2020

"Addressing the audience, Aoulad conveys her character’s pain and resolute sense of justice with both elegance and quaking rage. In “Tiresias,” the actress Katelijne Damen recites a blistering, dizzying poem by the young British poet Kae Tempest, a subversive retelling of the myth of the blind, gender-fluid prophet. Damen’s rendition of the virtuosic text is shot through with grace and wit. Especially impressive was how the Toneelhuis’ wide-screen camerawork (shot by Charlotte Bouckaert, who is also responsible for the set) succeeded in capturing the power of chamber theater."

"Partly hanging over a table, Katelijne Damen sensually tells how Tiresias celebrates her femininity. With her silky tone, this great actress ... knows how to add her own colour to Tempest’s expressive language."

Credits

director

  • Guy Cassiers

text

  • Kae Tempest
  • Stefan Hertmans

with

  • Katelijne Damen
  • Ikram Aoulad

scenography and video

  • Charlotte Bouckaert

production

  • Toneelhuis

coproduction

  • Danel Quartet

with the support of

  • Tax Shelter maatregel v/d Belgische Federale Overheid
  • Casa Kafka Pictures Tax Shelter empowered by Belfius

All data

  1. Saturday 9 October 2021 — 18h00 — Temporada Alta, Girona Spanish premiere
  2. Friday 19 November 2021 — Festival de Otoño a Primavera, Madrid, Madrid
  3. Saturday 20 November 2021 — Festival de Otoño a Primavera, Madrid, Madrid
  4. Thursday 5 May 2022 — 20h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen
  5. Friday 6 May 2022 — 20h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen
  6. Saturday 7 May 2022 — 20h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen
  7. Saturday 14 May 2022 — cultuurcentrum Hasselt, Hasselt
  1. Thursday 1 October 2020 — 20h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen
  2. Friday 2 October 2020 — 20h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen
  3. Saturday 3 October 2020 — 20h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen
  4. Wednesday 7 October 2020 — 20h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen
  5. Thursday 8 October 2020 — 20h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen
  6. Friday 9 October 2020 — 20h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen
  7. Saturday 10 October 2020 — 20h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen
  8. Sunday 11 October 2020 — 20h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen
  9. Tuesday 13 October 2020 — 20h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen
  10. Wednesday 14 October 2020 — 20h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen
  11. Thursday 15 October 2020 — 20h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen
  12. Friday 16 October 2020 — 20h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen
  13. Cancelled: Saturday 24 October 2020 — 18h00 — Temporada Alta, Girona
  14. Cancelled: Saturday 31 October 2020 — 20h00 — cultuurcentrum Hasselt, Hasselt
  15. Cancelled: Sunday 8 November 2020 — 19h30 — ITA, Rabozaal, Amsterdam
  16. Cancelled: Monday 9 November 2020 — 19h30 — ITA, Rabozaal, Amsterdam
  17. Cancelled: Thursday 7 January 2021 — 20h30 — Kaaitheater, Brussel
  18. Cancelled: Friday 8 January 2021 — 20h30 — Kaaitheater, Brussel
  19. Cancelled: Saturday 9 January 2021 — 20h30 — Kaaitheater, Brussel

News about ‘Antigone in Molenbeek + Tiresias’

See 'Antigone in Molenbeek + Tiresias' online during Lessingtage 2021 digital Article — 11 January 2021

See 'Antigone in Molenbeek + Tiresias' online during Lessingtage 2021 digital

Thalia Theater, a German company in Hamburg, and Dramaten, the Swedish national theatre in Stockholm, are co-organizing the first European online theatre festival. Both are members of mitos21, a European network of the continent’s leading theatres, to which Toneelhuis also belongs. 

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