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Theatre

De kinderjaren van Jezus

Mokhallad Rasem, Toneelhuis

Mokhallad Rasem tells a timeless story about leaving behind your old world replete with reliable memories and customs and finding yourself in a new environment. After a long journey from somewhere across the ocean, a man and a five-year-old boy arrive at a refugee centre where they are given residence permits and new names. The past is a vague memory. <em>De kinderjaren van Jezus </em>after the book <em>The Childhood of Jesus</em> by Nobel prize-winner J.M. Coetzee.

What does it feel like to find yourself in a new environment having left behind your old world replete with reliable memories and customs? What is it like to live a life in which you don’t feel the absence of anything, a life washed clean of memories, without secret desires and yearnings? Does such a thing exist? And is it desirable? These questions are at the heart of <em>The Childhood of Jesus</em>, the recent novel by the South-African Nobel Prize winner J.M. Coetzee and the starting point for Mokhallad Rasem’s adaptation of the novel into a lively play for two men, two women and a child.


After a long journey from somewhere across the ocean, a man of indeterminate age and a five-year-old boy arrive at a refugee centre where they are given residence permits and new names, ‘Simon’ for the man and ‘David’ for the boy. Apart from the fact that they have to get by in Spanish, there are no clues whatsoever as to where they are. The past is a vague memory. They are newcomers, displaced persons in a strange environment. On the journey here little David lost his mother and Simon took care of him, like a sort of guardian or chaperon. Simon looks for somewhere to live and finds work, but his main objective is to find a mother for David – his mother?  


In some respects the environment in which Simon and David find themselves is recognizable: people work, there are shops and houses and cars on the streets, people play tennis and there are schools and cultural centres. But familiar as all these things are, the atmosphere is unreal, strange. The inhabitants live peacefully side by side, seemingly with no great demands or desires, in a sort of egalitarian society which constantly takes Simon by surprise. People patiently explain to him, the ‘outsider’ who still lives by the rules of ‘old-fashioned thinking and feeling’, how things work in the new world. Adapting to a new environment and yet safeguarding your identity seems to be no easy feat. In fact it is such a big ask that Inès - the mother who is ‘found’ for David, the young and extraordinary child - will eventually want out of that new society.


Simon, Inès and David make their escape together…</p>


Ludo Teeuwen, an expert on Coetzee, wrote: “This novel resembles a will, a testament, a farewell to a weary old world which has to make way for the liberating world of the child.” To leave behind what is past and embrace the new without losing your identity, isn’t that the basic condition of many in our society? Or of us all? High time for Toneelhuis-maker Mokhallad Rasem to shed light on the subject. 

Credits

text

  • J.M. Coetzee

adaptation

  • Guy Cassiers
  • Mokhallad Rasem

performance

  • Sabri Saad El Hamus
  • Yamina Takkatz
  • Mieke De Groote
  • Filip Jordens
  • Mokhallad Rasem

scenography

  • Mokhallad Rasem

music

  • Bassem Hawar
  • Free Desmyter

composition

  • Free Desmyter

publisher

  • Uitgeverij Cossee

production

  • Toneelhuis

All data

Er zijn geen aankomende activiteiten voor dit event.

  1. Thursday 10 December 2015 — 20U00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerp
  2. Friday 11 December 2015 — 20U00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerp
  3. Saturday 12 December 2015 — 20U00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerp
  4. Sunday 13 December 2015 — 15U00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerp
  5. Wednesday 16 December 2015 — 20U00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerp
  6. Thursday 17 December 2015 — 20U00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerp
  7. Friday 18 December 2015 — 20U00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerp
  8. Saturday 19 December 2015 — 20U00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerp
  9. Tuesday 22 December 2015 — ARSENAAL/LAZARUS, Mechelen
  10. Wednesday 23 December 2015 — ARSENAAL/LAZARUS, Mechelen
  11. Tuesday 27 September 2016 — 14U30 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerp
  12. Tuesday 27 September 2016 — 21U00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerp
  13. Friday 30 September 2016 — C-mine, Genk

Nieuws over ‘De kinderjaren van Jezus’

Video — 11 May 2015

Ik woon tussen twee werelden

Walter Van Looveren en David Verdeure zijn de gesprekspartners van Mokhallad Rasem. Beide heren volgen al langer het werk van Mokhallad. Hun invalshoeken zijn verschillend maar blijken elkaar wonderwel aan te vullen.

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