In Shelly Shonk Fiffit, Benjamin Abel Meirhaeghe broaches a theme that is just as unfathomable as the creation’s title: the cosmos. As usual, Meirhaeghe doesn’t start with a text or a clearly delineated concept, but from certain fascinations and the dynamic group of performers he brings together.
On 25 December 2021, the James Webb Space Telescope was launched. This infrared telescope is the biggest and most sophisticated space telescope ever, which allows scientists to look deep into the universe and into the past. It is used among others to seek out the ‘cosmic dawn’: the light of the very first stars, which came into being shortly after the birth of our universe.
But more than the voyage of discovery the telescope makes, Meirhaeghe is fascinated by the capability of the human mind to rise above itself and the universe. The vast endlessness of the universe engulfs us; science is constantly seeking, but our imagination is absolute.
The infinity of the universe swallows us up, science searches but our imagination is absolute. What fascinates Benjamin Abel Meirhaeghe even more than the discovery of this telescope is the capacity of human beings to rise above themselves and the universe in their thoughts. Their capacity for invention. In this show, Meirhaeghe links the high tech of a telescope to the primitiveness of handcraft and manual techniques.
His companion on this trip past the borders of our body and our time is the Italian composer Caterina Barbieri. She creates electronic music with a ‘transformative and mind-enhancing’ potential. To the hypnotic tones of Fantas (part of her masterful 2019 album Ecstatic Computation), the performers, dancers and singers surrender to the inexplicable and inexpressible.
Shelly Shonk Fiffit will be an intense and ecstatic visual and musical trip, through both our inner worlds and the far corners of the cosmos. Fiffit!
“Par l’espace l’univers me comprend et m’engloutit comme un point; par la pensée je le comprends.”
REGIE / MISE EN SCÈNE / DIRECTION Benjamin Abel Meirhaeghe TEKST / TEXTE / TEXT Jori(k) Amit Galama VAN EN MET / DE ET AVEC / FROM & WITH Fumiyo Ikeda, Bully Fae Collins, Eurudike De Beul, Alphonse Eklou, Nathan Felix-Rivot, Malique Fye, Hanako Hayakawa, Faust De Winne
MUZIEK / MUSIQUE / MUSIC Caterina Barbieri SCENOGRAFIE & LICHT / SCÉNOGRAPHIE & LUMIÈRES / SCENOGRAPHY & LIGHT Bart Van Merode, Zaza Dupont
DRAMATURGIE / DRAMATURGY Louise van den Eede VAN & MET / DE & AVEC / BY & WITH acht performers (ntb)
STEMCOACH / COACH VOCAL / VOCAL COACH Wouter Deltour
PRODUCTIE / PRODUCTION Toneelhuis COPRODUCTIE / COPRODUCTION Tandem Scène nationale Douai (FR)
MET DE STEUN VAN / AVEC LE SOUTIEN DE / WITH THE SUPPORT OF Tax Shelter van de Belgische federale overheid, Look@Leo
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