26. - 29. September 2007 at 9 pm in                     , London

An Art-Installation Performance

The performance is inspired by the quest for ecstasy, infinity and meaning. Albert Camus‘ play Caligula is smashed like a mirror and the shards have to pieced together again. Ordinary humanity, ordinary desires and rough electronic imagery meet animal forces, emotional eruptions and violence meet morality and the quest for a better life...
Reality disintegrates through the film recordings and live film on stage: dream, film and deed merge. Yearning for love and sense and lust for violence become entwined in a mutual dependence of opposites.
The glamour and the fear of the very many possibilities of life and the structurally deficient character of life are acted out physically and mentally.

The venue, SHUNT, is perfect: every day, thousands of people pass by hurrying to and from London Bridge station, unaware of the cavernous vaults above and below, the darkroom or unconscious of the Tube and rail station (and, incidentally, of the National Theatre)....     


Created and Directed by MALTE SCHLOESSER
With a short film in collaboration with JOHN HARDWICK (musicvideo- and filmmaker)
„Caligula, bestow me the salvation fuck“
„Kill all sad ones and the world will be a merrier place!“

The struggle for ecstatic experiences is a struggle against constant futility; an anchor to infinity.  Albert Camus writes: ‚The most important challenge of human existence is death’. And it is also the Emperor Caligula’s truth and humanity to suffer of this unbearbility and the wish to get rid of this disgust of none-necessity: ‘I want people to live and be happy.’ But instead of making the impossible possible he succumbs to the illness that makes him ill, he becomes the aggressor destroying himself and men. If everyone is guilty they deserve death, Caligula believes; if money is important people are unimportant; if porno makes people beautiful we don’t need love! – So is his definition of happiness. 

Looking for Caligula, we also ask Camus about the possibility of indifference in ourselves: For example, 100.000 people stand in North Africa and want to enter Europe, fleeing from starvation to a country in which the beams are bending from nutritious goods available. We send the navy to the Mediterranean, to intercept them, so they won’t even be able to see Europe. We isolate us, shut down and overfeed ourselves on animals, their suffering we don’t care about…

If we live in a world in which death is the hunter, you become indifferent to the world. You have to suffer as Caligula in order to feel a sense of protest and resistance against death but you cannot let love die for that. People apparently have to decide: they have to reach out for their freedom, creativity, yearning, enjoyment, love and relaxation or otherwise the will perish from their fear.

Caligula is losing himself and realises too late that he used his freedom in order to desecrate, perverting the protest by spreading the pain and death against which he had initially rebelled. This kind of despair is maybe the most obvious interface between negative and positive determined ecstasy, between good and bad humans: What should we do and where should we go if whatever we do leads to murder?

Performer: Tom Murphy (Eng), Niamh McKernan (Irl), Brigita Lajkovic (Slov), Sam Burgin (Aus) // Sound by Samuel Halscheidt (Ger) // Assistant Directors: Kelly Picken (Aus) & Kirstin Dryburgh (Eng) // Stage Design by Ieva Strazdina (Lv) // Video Design by Karis Tanner (Eng), Jamie Mill (Eng), Peter Pforde (Irl) // Lighting by Ignat Gorazd (Lv) // Grafik-Design by Ana Brosin (Ger) // Fotos by Ana Brosin, Ieva Strazdina, Malte Schlösser // Translations by Jeremy Knolle (Ger)