There is a child. Omnipresently absent.
There is a musician. Pulling the strings.
The setting is a shelter, which is a brothel, which is a theater: a stage and dressing room.
Or perhaps it is simply the projection of the intimacy between three performers backstage.
Their roles are constantly changing; we get glimpses of the unpolished reality behind their performances. We bare witnesses to the very transfigurations that their “audience” do not wish to see.
This work revisits the Jokers of society; those characters that manifest themselves as distinctive from others, transformed by society into easy allegories, and made into proxies for all means of filth and deception or purity and wisdom. They are figures inevitably alienated by their own otherness, whether inherent or assigned. They become a screen onto which to project any narrative, escaping the anxiety of self-identification within a community or society. These appointed scapegoats could then be cursed, marginalized, denied existence, tortured, burned, and killed, or conversely sanctified, canonized, and worshiped. They are the products of a culture nourished by binaries of good and bad, the mirror of collective intelligence, the transfigurations that diverge and transcend the individual.
This performance is the outcome of a collaborative artistic process joining theater and music.
The work was driven through a process of improvisations and collective writing by the company around the theme of the Jokers and involved the input of a musician and a make-up artist.
Presentation dates and locations
The play premiered internationally in October 2017, in Bordeaux within the Festival International des Arts de Bordeaux Métropole (FAB). It was further developed and later performed in Beirut on the 16th, 17th and 18th of December 2017 at Zoukak Studio.
Conceived and devised by Zoukak Theatre Company
Directors: Omar Abi Azar and Junaid Sarieddeen
Performers/devisers: Lamia Abi Azar, Junaid Sarieddeen, Maya Zbib
Musician: Khodor Ellaik (Kid Fourteen)
Dramaturgy: Omar Abi Azar, Mohamad Hamdan and Junaid Sarieddeen
Assistant director: Marianne Kortbani
Scenographer: Nathalie Harb
Assistant scenographer: Zyad Ceblany
Illustration of set masks: Joseph Kaï
Poster designer: Maya Chami
Sound engineer: Jawad Chaaban
Light designers: Guillaume Tesson and Nadim Deaibes
Technical director: Nadim Deaibes
Make-up artist: Mohamad Reda
Costume designer: Mahmood Al-Safi
Production manager: Mohamad Hamdan
Produced by: Zoukak Theatre Company
Supported by: DROSOS