O! My Bear! O! Panda Mia!
- Kategorie: Aktuelles
“O! My Bear! O! Panda Mia!”
„Why not the Bear?“ by and with Lena Binski (Berlin)
Participative Installation and Performance
...Before this extraordinary cultural event I was pondering and brooding over it. The word “bear” - what do I know about it? How many, if any, synonyms and associations these three letters, if in German and Hebrew languages: “Bär”, “דוב”. Or seven letters, if in Russian language: “медведь” [medved’]. Or four letters, if in English language: “bear”. OK... These pixels of modern world’s Etymology – what do they mean for me??? I was contemplating and speculating on this issue.
And it transpired that this word does evoke quite many associations!
The mascot of the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow. Bern – the capital of Switzerland, also the Bear. Symbolic for many cities around the Globe, for Berlin, for instance. And also on the flag of the State of California. Panda epitomizes many events in South East Asia and, in my opinion, is being absolutely irretrievable from the spirit of the Orient. As well as from the folklore culture of the Occident. Plenty of Russian fairy tales are being connected with this ursine character! How many idioms in so many languages are being connected with the bearish theme! And last, but not the least, they said, that in Mother Russia the bears pawed the streets in some cities, including the space of The Red Square. Till today I wonder, where they always hid themselves, as I was not able to glimpse them even once... But, personally for me the most significant Etymology of the ursine letters was quite different. At school I devoted quite a lot of my time to the freestyle wrestling. And Alexander Medved is the three times Olympic champion in this sport. This outstanding athlete’s achievements and performances on the international wrestling carpet, undoubtedly, were the guiding specimen of sportsmanship and human achieving. I felt and sensed so too.
But what kind of a bear I would encounter at the Theatre A Parte at Annenstrasse 20 A (in Witten 58453)? That was the intriguing part of that Theatre going evening. What kind of creature would be promulgating performance at the International Theatre Festival “Klein Aber Fein”? I was very eager to realize this!
...Dear and Highly Esteemed Readers! Have you ever entered the cage with the bear in your life? Most likely you would reply in the negative. But I did so this evening! I was in the confines of this kennel. But what a Bear it was! Friendly! Courteous! Amicable! The one I would love to share the bear hug with!
This ursine creature even treated me with the bottle of the most delectable lemonade! And the bars of this cage were made of some hawser ropes. I would say it was the most inmates’ friendly incarceration in the world. Free to enter! Free to leave! Free to go to freedom any time!
And here I would refer to the feeling and thought, that being in this cage with this most charming Bear (actress Lena Binski) was very freeing and liberating experience for me. For the duration of this interactive performance I was able to free myself from the shackles and apprehensive fears of uncertainty, of unpredictability, of the unknown. In a nutshell and very simple vocabulary: with this Dear Bear everything was good, certain, pleasant and, most importantly, halcyon! How unconcerned and placid were these moments, albeit they were very fleeting too! Dear Lena Binski, I would love to prolong these minutes, seconds and instances of theatrical interaction! I am sure everyone from the odeum would hundred percent agree with me.
Sounds unusual, doesn’t it?.. “Behind the bars” more latitude of liberty, than outside of them... But the participating installation “Warum nicht der Bär” performed by Lena Binski made such transfiguration the reality!
This staging was also a kind of meditation for me. (And honestly speaking, this is why I had some thoughts about Buddhism, and Lena Binski's Bear for some minutes transformed itself into Himalayan bear and then into Panda).
With the tranquilizing sounds of nature: chirping oscine chords, croaking of the frogs, oceanic breezes and billowing waves of the nightly forest silence. The Bear did know how to use the tape recorder! And soothing atmosphere of the natural reserve sanctuary was created on stage. Yes, within the quadratic space of the cage, delineated by its boarders.
And, apparently, this Bear did like Beethoven's music too. No... it wasn't the tape recorder, but a radio set from the 1970s, or 1960s. When one could simply sip cocoa, or coffee at breakfast without bothering to check the messages on the smartphone. Those were the times...
The performance “Warum nicht der Bär?” by and with Lena Binski is a very intelligent and invigorating experience for the viewers of all ages. Also an excellent opportunity for the family viewing. I would like to express my sincere gratitude to Lena Binski and to the Theatre A Parte in Witten for this opportunity to be a spectator and verbatim the stage performer. I hope, I was an appropriate acting participant of this theatrical installation.
Thinking somewhat humorously about grim realities of the last several years I would like to exclaim with a sigh of relief: O! Panda Mia! O! My Bear! How “Pandamic”, so extensively Thespian were Your improvisations.
I am giving to You the wholehearted, most sincere Bear Hug – die Bärenumarmung!
Truly theatrically Yours,
“Men in white” of Theater Horizont from Cologne
- Kategorie: Aktuelles
“Men in white” of Theater Horizont from Cologne
...Theatre is like a magnet, it's like a Gourmet food, or like a narcotic (of course, figuratively speaking). In the sense, that a true theatregoer develops some kind of profound dependency on Melpomene. On the adrenaline of the stage and of the odeum. On the whole Thespian medium. I’ve got addicted to it. And this supposition of mine got the practical confirmation. I have some letters to write and to prepare some documents, I have to do many other things... but instead I start typing and recording my spectators echo about the play “Das Herz eines Boxers” – “The heart of the Boxer” performed by the Theater Horizont from Cologne. This theatrical soiree was realized under the auspices of the Second International Theatre Festival “Klein aber fein” at the Theatre A Parte in Witten. (Address: Annenstrasse 20A, 58453 Witten).
And writing these lines I find my placating equilibrium, abstracting from the mundane hustle and bustle. Theatre – this is what really matters! Theatre – this is The Nirvana and the light in the end of the tunnel. Although the main theme of this dramatization might be described as melancholy and depression.
I watched the staging of “Das Herz eines Boxers” on July 10th, 2022. It was Sunday.
...I would like to say, that the brief questions and answers session, mini “press conference”, which took place after the play, did help me quite a lot to propitiate my sombre agitated moods. As I, probably, felt like after having watched Alfred Hitchcock's movie. With the only difference, that “Das Herz eines Boxers” is not a thriller, but a very truthfully narrated sad story. Of the former boxing champion, who appeared in much unexpected, very long lasting life circumstances. The dolors and grieves of every day being, of uncertainty of tomorrow are being very pronouncedly parleyed in the thorough acting manner by Waldemar Hooge, who portrayed the Boxer. Marc Alexander, acting out as the Youth, was also instrumental in unrolling the subject line of this performance and aggravating the tensions of the drama.
Yes, for me “Das Herz des Boxers” was the staging, first of all, with the dramatic, tragic context. The suspension of the dawning doom was very clearly sensed in this work of the drama art. Although, I must admit, that its dramatization at times sensed even as the comedy, they were there several humorous episodes...
But for me the most memorable scene of the “Das Herz des Boxers” was the one, when the Boxer and the Youth as if time transported themselves into the times of glory of the Red Leo.
When Leo (Waldemar Hooge) really was “fluttering like a butterfly”... luckily, for the Youngster – The Youth (Mark Alexander) and for the spectators in the odeum he didn't “sting like a bee” on stage. And I would allow myself to smile at that...
In our lives, sometimes (or even often) we feel like being boxed down into the corner, or even knocked out. But seeing the implied – assumed liberation of the Boxer from the societal and self-inflicted dogmatic confines in “Das Herz eines Boxers” would lead many of the viewers into the reviving and asserting the sense of new beginning that after morose rain and dark clouds, there would come the brighter sunnier hours. This play is a psychological drama, but verbatim a lyrical touching story too. With a glimpse of hope. With the beams of Sol at the Horizon.
The chamber theatre format of this staging also helped the spectators, including my own self, to feel even more close to the life peripeteia of the two characters, of Leo and of the Youth (I deliberately, omit the nickname “Yoyo”) and empathize with their aspirations, trials and tribulations of their life paths.
At the concluding press conference / questions and answers session the actors put on the white shirts. And it felt like the thrilling suspense doom of the play was bleached out and diluted. The fiction of play script was smoothed out by the reality of the play’s storytelling.
I would like to express my gratitude to the Horizont Theater from Cologne, to the actors Waldemar Hooge, Mark Alexander and to the stage director Volker Hein for this boxing with my inner self theatrical experience.
And the Theatre A Parte from Witten for hosting the Second International Theatre Festival “Klein aber Fein”. Thank You very much!
Pinkhas - Peter Friesen
...I’ve also read that being a professional boxer is not only dangerous, but also a quite unrewarding profession. That, through some reason, in many countries boxers don’t receive the pension... If this is really the case, then it should be changed. Don’t You think so?.. Watching the play "”Das Herz des Boxers” I kept on wondering: What was the financial situation of the Red Leo?..