C'est du Chinois
Edit Kaldor (Hungary/Netherlands)
Running Time: 85 minutes
The Public Theater: 425 Lafayette Street
$20 Tickets: publictheater.org or call 212-967-7555.
"Thank you for your interest to learn Mandarin. It is a good investment of your time." Meet the Yao and Lu families from Shanghai, determined to reinvent themselves in a new country. The only language they speak is Mandarin, but that will not stand in the way of a productive exchange with their audience. In this highly original production, the performers teach us a basic comprehension of the Mandarin language, just enough to decipher their unfolding story. Starting at zero, the performers and the audience create something together - the possibility of a personal encounter, an intimate meeting.
"C'est du Chinois" is a French expression, meaning "it's all Greek to me" (literally "it's Chinese"), indicating that something is impossible to understand. The equivalent in Mandarin is è½èµ·ä¾†åƒç«æ˜Ÿè©± (literally, "sounds like Mars language").
Netherlands-based Hungarian director Edit Kaldor is recognized internationally as a unique voice in the contemporary theater landscape for her work that mixes documentary and fictional elements, including One Hour (2012), WORK (2011), Point Blank (2007).
In Mandarin with no supertitles.
"An ingenious game on meaning and identity is played out on stage." - Vrij Nederland
"Creates a measure of real community .. when it's over, it leaves us with a willingness to continue the learning process, outside the frame of the theater." Goteborgs-Posten (Sweden)
This program is supported, in part, by public funds from the Consolate General of the Netherlands in New York. Festival presentation supported by Performing Arts Fund Netherlands.
Produced by Productiehuis Rotterdam (Rotterdamse Schouwburg), Stichting Kata (Amsterdam)
Co-produced by Alkantara festival (Lisbon), Kunstenfestivaldesarts (Brussels), Göteborgs Dans & Teater Festival (Sweden), steirischer herbst festival (Graz), NXTSTP, with the support of the Culture Programme of the European Union. Supported by the Performing Arts Fund NL, VSBfund, Amsterdam Fund for the Arts, research supported by HUB - Theatre in Motion (Beijing)
Photo by Tom Croes
Additional photos by Raquel Belli and Luc Vleminckx