Last Thursday I got the opportunity to get a sneak peek of the new production by the Noord Nederlands Toneel, called ‘Carrousel’. At noon I arrived at the home base of the NNT, theater de Machinefabriek. I had seen the building before, but had never been inside. After a little stroll through the building, trying to find my way, I found the rehearsal room. I went into a room covered in dark where actors, dancers, musicians, the director and other staff members were busy working. I sat down in the midst of all this activity and got the chance to see the décor of the production and watch the rehearsal process. In this blog I will tell you a little bit about the production, my experience at the rehearsals and I also have an exciting announcement to make!
Carrousel is a production with actors of the Noord Nederlands Toneel, dancers of Club Guy and Roni and musicians from Asko|Schönbergs K[h]AOS, directed by Guy Weizman. The performance is based on ‘They Shoot Horses Don’t They’, a novel and film on the dance marathons of the ’20s and ‘30s in the United States. In these marathons couples sometimes danced for weeks in order to become the ‘last one’s standing’. The reason to participate in these marathons was often poverty; participating namely meant getting food and shelter. The public present at these marathons often enjoyed and entertained themselves with watching the suffering of the participants.
In Carrousel the public is confronted with such an exhausting and catastrophic dancing competition. In this way the public is also confronted with questions like: why do we like to watch the suffering of others? Why do we seem to feel a little bit better about ourselves when we are confronted with the suffering of others? And, can you break out of this circle of watching and being watched?
An element of the production that fits this theme of watching and being watched very well is the live streaming of the rehearsals. Until this Friday (3rd of March) there is the opportunity to take a look at the rehearsals via the live stream between 12:30 – 13:00. You can watch the live stream of the rehearsals form this link: https://carrousel.nnt.nl/streams/.
Last Thursday, when I walked into the rehearsal room, the fist thing I noticed was the décor. I saw a wooden construction that reminded me of a big half pipe. The musicians were positioned on top of the stage and in the wooden construction there was a big digital clock that kept on ticking. But, what struck me most about the décor was the fact that the stage could turn.
The cast and director were rehearsing a scene in which the middle of the stage was turning and therefore actors had to keep walking in order to remain at the same spot. This was visually very interesting and I am curious in which way this will be featured in the performance. Another interesting feature of the performance is the fact that everything is sub-titled. The English spoken dialogues have Dutch surtitles, while the Dutch spoken texts will have English surtitles.
I am also really looking forward to see whether the difference between actors and dancers will show in the performance. And we can find the answer to this question already very soon, because the performance will premiere at the 3rd of March. But that is not all!
- Because Study Association IK and the NNT organize a live Q&A session about this production on Facebook, with amongst others Guy Weizman and Robbert van Heuven. You can find more information about this below!
- On the 7th of April there is also a ‘Taste of Art’, with which we will visit the performance itself!
Live Q&A session: You do not want to miss this! Monday the 6th of March you will get the unique opportunity to ask questions to Guy Weizman (director) and Robbert van Heuven (dramaturge) about their production ‘Carrousel’.
Think for example about questions like;
- What inspired Guy Weizman and Robbert van Heuven to make this production?
- How do Guy Weizman and Robbert van Heuven work together as director and dramaturge?
- What was it like to work with dancers and actors in one ensemble?
You are of course also very welcome to ask other questions concerning ‘Carrousel’ that interest you.
At 20.30 we will be live at the Facebook page of Study Association IK and the Facebook page of the NNT. We look forward to see you there and receive a lot of questions from you in the comment section!