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The Crack Begins Within

Emma Howes, Justin Kennedy, and Balz Isler on UNFURL: a lucid sci-fi opera, Gropius Bau, 17.10.2020

UNFURL: a lucid sci-fi opera is a performance by Emma Howes and Justin Kennedy in collaboration with Balz Isler, music composition by Ethan Braun and Nkisi, costumes by Beate Huss

Grappling with themes of death, apocalypse, and repression of life-source, UNFURL: a lucid sci-fi opera brings together beatboxing and trance rave and beams the public through the story of Empress Alberta and her reflections, transmitted along the Fungoozian Network. The concert is a loud contemplation on darkness, set on Etherland, a mythical planet where songs and movement are vehicles for transforming loss of life and its aftermath. Costumes use a color and prop code system, like military uniforms. In this case, though, clothing is used like a second skin to flip inside out, to hide and alter. These transfigurations are the mocking shadows of war, folding and unfolding. Here, the organic qualities of a bio-world mold and mutate, from person to tree to spirit and automated androidgyny. This is a spiritual and collective expansion of consciousness—ecstatic and spontaneous choreographies that make it possible to connect with other beings. (Amelia Bande)

The Canadian participation at the 11th Berlin Biennale is part of Canada’s culture program as Guest of Honour at the Frankfurt Book Fair. It is supported by the Canada Council for the Arts and the Government of Canada.

Kamera: Martin Gajc, Stefan Wagner

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