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KVS, Maaike Neuville, Tessa Hall

Maaike Neuville and Tessa Hall set to work with the story of Iphigenia, one of the most tragic figures in Greek mythology.
She is sacrificed by her father to give the Greek army wind in the sails as they set out to retrieve the abducted Helena in Troy, the start of a ten-year war. That’s how the story goes. But what if Iphigenia had been able to write her own story? If she had not sacrificed herself for her father, for her fatherland? What if she had been allowed to be a woman – a young woman with a voice, with words. More words than: ‘I willingly offer my body for my city and for all of Greece’. What then?

In this adaptation of the classical tragedy, Maaike Neuville lets Iphigenia look back on her own story and on the endless cycle of vengeance in her family through a monologue. The question arises: how could things be different?

How do I turn back?
How do I turn the tide from whence I was born?
How do I return to the front side of the love that my ancestors once lost?

How do we look back on our Western history, our canon of stories – mostly written by men, in a context in which women had little to no say in political and social life? How can a young women stand in her power without betraying the past, but also without letting it hinder her from finding her own voice? And how can you take to the stage with millennia-old texts?

Where do stories seep into our blood and drive us to action? 
And who, father, who holds the pen?

This adaptation looks both back and forward, lends many colours to Iphigenia’s rage, and proposes solutions for where we can go from here – not just with her character, but also with our shared view on the past.

Ifigeneia is a spoken dance performance in which words and movement complement and question each other, amplify but also contradict each other. Tessa Hall creates the choreography and with Maaike Neuville she looks for the relation between text and dance that takes place past the demonstrative, past the predictable. The result is spoken dance, about the transforming power of the timeless rage of a young woman.
This performance is the second part of a cross-disciplinary diptych. In Zij., Maaike Neuville’s debut novel, we follow Ada, an actress on her way to the theatre where she will perform a monologue by her own hand – an adaptation of Iphigenia. The part you don’t read in the book – the play itself – is staged by Maaike Neuville and Tessa Hall and masterfully performed by Adanna Unigwe.

"What Adanna Unigwe pulls off here, is top-notch acting and defiant dancing at the same time. One of the trumps of this solo is the tone, the flair, the naturality, the gravity, the humour and the energy with which Unigwe embodies Iphigeneia. This contemporary Iphigeneia speaks so that you will listen."

Michaël Bellon in Bruzz , 16 November 2023

tekst & regie

  • Maaike Neuville


  • Adana Unigwe


  • Tessa Hall


  • Louise Van den Eede


  • Špela Tušar

costume design

  • Lila John 

light design

  • Bas Devos

director of photography film

  • Charlie Speeckaert


  • KVS


  • Perpodium

thanks to

  • Mery Choulieri
  • Zoi Salivaniou
  • Theatro Chalkidas
  • Eleni Ellada Damianou
  • Kwinten Van Laethem
  • Thomas Stoefs

with the support of

  • de Tax Shelter van de Belgische federale overheid

All data

  1. Friday 24 January 2025 — 20h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen
  2. Saturday 25 January 2025 — 20h00 — Bourlaschouwburg, Antwerpen

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