Het Gezin van Paemel
Wirken moet ne mensch en ni lieglupe. Akkerdjie.
Because we’re still working, integrating, assimilating; classes and communities still don’t speak each other’s languages; families are still ripped apart, young and old remain standing, knives drawn, to defend God, faith and country. Het gezin van Paemel in a changing world – in 1903 – and today.
In 2019 SKaGeN announced its new, large-scale ensemble piece: Flemish classic, The Paemel Family. The whole company was to appear onstage together, with invited guest actors to make up a total cast of 13 performers.
In 2020 a virus threatened that plan. But the virus didn’t take into account SKaGeN’s creative spirit. Actor and theatre-maker Valentijn Dhaenens takes on the challenge and plays all thirteen parts. At the same time.
Valentijn travelled the world with SKaGeN for twelve years, in the highly successful monologues BigMouth, SmallWar and Unsung. In SmallWar, he used screens to multiply himself so that he could talk to his seven alter egos.
Now, in The Paemel Family, Dhaenens will take this a step further. In each of the play’s four acts he performs one character live. The other characters, also played by him, will appear digitally.
But to be clear: The Paemel Family won’t be a monologue. It is a test of creative ingenuity in Corona times.
This version of the Flemish classic is about more than bravura. In this staging, Dhaenens shows us our battles with our past, engaging in intense dialogue with his heritage, also the heritage of Flanders, and bringing out a strand of alone-togetherness that is deeply familiar, not just in these times.