Thus Speaks Gilgamesh

Tangiers calling
At the International Centre for Performance Studies Festival in Tangier, Morocco, Nora Amin found out about migrant theatre.

The theme of the 14th International Centre for Performance Studies Festival (23-26 November) was Migrant Forms of Theatre. The internationally renowned theatre scholar Khaled Amin created a unique festival design this year, combining an international conference with guest performances connected to the same topic. The conference was held in cooperation with the International Research Centre for Interweaving Performance Cultures (Berlin, Germany). Amin worked hard for years to create a stable and sustainable partnership with the centre in Berlin through the consultancy, advise and advocacy of Erika Fischer-Lichte and Christel Weiler. It was a special experience to see a scientific-scholarly partnership grow over the years between Germany and Morocco, but it was even more special to see how this partnership managed to contribute to the Arab region and international performance sphere, providing profound and innovative discussions in performance research.

Thus Speaks Gilgamesh by Lalish Theaterlabor (Vienna) was the final performance-event of the festival. Resulting from a workshop, the piece presented the amazing work of Shamal and Negar, based on highly sophisticated vocal work inspiring a sense of ritualistic performance that transcends time and space. The workshop participants showed very good skills in just a short time, which proves how much passion has an influence on art production and training. It was a moment to celebrate: starting from the topic of migrant theatre and ending with a context where we lose our sense of time and place via the voices that transcend borders and free our souls towards a new notion of identity capable of being born in the here and now that should not be defined by geographic location or clock time, but rather by the collective bonding of the freshly born moment.
A moment of bonding that Khadija could not enjoy throughout her entire life, a moment that Amin knows how to create.

Nora Amin

In: Al-Ahram Weekly
Issue 1421, (6 - 12 December 2018)