Category: Society

Grec Festival 2016 – A Brief Introduction

De Stille Kracht, Toneelgroup Amsterdam. photo: Jan Versweyveld

If you’re passing the Palau de la Virreina on the Rambles or staring up at any of the lampposts around Barcelona, you’ll see some rather optically-challenging ads for a summer event called the Grec, an annual performing arts festival of some 141 acts, plus discussions and other activities that go on through July. Its name derives from the expansive amphitheatre a bit up… Read more »

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The Reign in Spain – An Unofficial History

A satirical theatre production at Madrid’s Teatro del Barrio (6th April – 22nd June 2016) interrogates the role and reputation of the King of Spain as the country’s head of state and its military. The monarch in play is the now 78-year-old Juan Carlos I, who first set foot in Spain at the age of 10,… Read more »

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Feeding the World – New Images of Africa

Tahir Karmali, Dennis Muraguri, Tonney Mugo: Jua Kali City.

Making Africa: A Continent of Contemporary Design, an exhibition currently at Barcelona’s CCCB, is the vibrant, visual manifestation of an extensive, on-going research project that brings together the work of 120 artists and designers from all over the continent. Curated by Amelie Klein of the Vitra Design Museum in Germany, the show was put together under… Read more »

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B for Bárcenas – Spanish Scandal on Screen

B., la pelicula is directed by David Ilundain and based on the stage play Ruz/Barcenas by Jordi Casanovas. It stars Pedro Casablanc as Bárcenas and Manolo Solo as Ruz.

The extraordinary court encounter between the Spanish judge Pablo Ruz and the Partido Popular politician Luis Bárcenas Gutiérrez has been made into an award-winning, triple Goya-nominated film directed by David Ilundáin. In 2013, Bárcenas, of the right-wing ‘People’s Party’, was brought before judge Ruz for a second time and admitted to running a slush fund for nearly two decades while holding the… Read more »

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Invernadero – Pinter’s blend of slapstick and horror

Invernadero (The Hothouse) by Harold Pinter, directed by Mario Gas. Translated by Eduardo Mendoza. Photo: Ros Ribas.

Mario Gas, one of Spain’s best-known directors and Eduardo Mendoza, one of the country’s best-known authors, bring their brains together for this pop-up theatre production of Harold Pinter’s lesser-known black comedy The Hothouse (Invernadero), at Barcelona’s Teatre Lliure until February 21st, 2016.  This comic, tragic, macabre play is set in a government-approved institution where countless ‘residents’ are numbered rather… Read more »

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Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui: “Breaking ourselves is the only way to grow”

Fractus V Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui photo: Filip Van Roe

Belgian choreographer Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui talks about Fractus V, a contemporary dance piece currently on European tour, that explores the complexities of communicating in a world divided by prejudice and swamped in misinformation. Inspired by the ways of thinking of Noam Chomsky, afflicted by the recent violence in Paris and Brussels, the 75-minute piece brings five dancers of radically… Read more »

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What’s on? Sâlmon Festival puts dance on the table

In its fourth edition performing arts festival Sâlmon (November 26 to December 5) stamps its identity on the international festival circuit as both socially relevant and visually innovative. From a showcase for dancers in a European framework, the festival has graduated into a manifestation of new collaborative work by unconventional Latin American, southern European and… Read more »

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887 – Robert Lepage and the Mischief of Memory

Our memories act upon us, selecting events, experiences and emotions from our lives, apparently at random; they make meanings of them, whittling them into storylines or  setting out rules for living. In his one-person stage play 887 the Canadian director, actor and playwright Robert Lepage unravels such narratives, questioning the characteristics that form our identities. “I call 887… Read more »

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What’s On? El Misàntropo directed by Miguel del Arco

El Misàntropo is a contemporary Spanish version of the classic play Le Misanthrope by 17th century French playwright Molière. A social satire with political implications, it deals with issues such as hypocrisy and love, sycophancy and plain speaking, and how far one should go to defend the truth. As Spanish theatre director Miguel del Arco has recognised, this… Read more »

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Review: Roni Horn – Everything Sleeping… at Fundació Miró

My dream is to renovate my bathroom and put in wall-to-wall showering. In the middle, I’d have a huge, bubbling jacuzzi that takes up most of the floor space, with a sauna option operational via a toe button. Tropical plants would surround me, a robot would bring me drinks, and there I’d sit, sniffing steam… Read more »

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