Utopia TM

Shakespeare im Park

“Imgard and Dieter, a pensioner couple who live in the well-to-do suburb of Zehlendorf and had never been to Görlitzer Park before, are hugely enthusiastic about the experience. “The players were excellent and we loved the costumes,” Imgard said. “It was all simply wonderful.”  The Guardian

“Das ist ein lustvolles und actionreiches Spiel. Die Figuren tragen üppig gestaltete Kostüme, ihre Bühne ist der Park, so wie er ist.” Berliner Zeitung

 

“What Utopia TM – Where all is True  lacks in polish, it compensates for in inventiveness: combining texts from Sir Thomas More, Shakespeare and some authors whose names have been lost to history; creating signs out of children’s toys; using plastic sheeting for costumes and silver balls for Anne Boylen’s (Sebastian Witt) breasts.” Exberliner

Lisa Merk & Mark von Wardenburg

+ wonderful Photos in the Bildergalerie der Tagesspiegel

Utopia™ – Premiere am 27. Juli 2012

Der Countdown läuft – am 27. Juli hat die neue Produktion im Görlitzer ParkPremiere: “Utopia™ – Where All Is True”.

Mitten in Kreuzberg entsteht eine neue, eine bessere Welt (nach Shakespeare & Thomas More): Es herrscht Religionsfreiheit, Privatbesitz ist abgeschafft, niemand muss hungern, Arbeit für alle, Bildung für alle!

Utopia™ ist ein Erlebnis für die ganze Familie, erdacht und umgesetzt von einer mächtigen Elite, ein kommerzielles Spektakel, möglich gemacht durch den schweißtreibenden Einsatz fleißiger Arbeitskräfte. Hinter den Kulissen füllt Kardinal Wolsey seine Kassen, König Heinrich betrügt seine Frau und Thomas More verbrennt ein paar Protestanten, weil das nötig ist für die schöne neue Welt.

Mehr Infos unter: www.shakespeareimparkberlin.org.

Costumes Arianne Vitale Cardoso

Upcycling UTOPIATM 

 

(circumnavigating the berliner “fleas”)

 

The concept for the set design, props and costumes from Shakespeare im Park Berlin’s theatre piece, Utopia TM Where All is True, was based in the rich material found in Berlin’s unique Flea Market tradition, and transformed through a process of meticulous assemblage. The show played for four weeks in Kreuzberg’s fashionably derelict, Görlitzer Park, with audience touring through this mobile site-specific event alongside actors, who made the park their stage. 

 DO5C3400

Over the course of two months, Arianne Vitale Cardoso (costume designer) and Alberto di Gennaro (set designer) scoured the city for material. From huge industrial warehouse to rundown little “Troedel” shop, Berlin offers a seeming infinitude of possibilities to find charming curios, quaint knick-knacks, rare and tawdry fabrics and occasionally monumental discoveries in the magic casements of the city’s grungy network of second-hand commerce: prices all negotiable and dust, mould (and sometimes a little bit of that “Berliner Schnauze”) galore!

 

With such “rare-bird” acquisitions at hand, the assemblage was accomplished with the thrill of turning lead into gold. An old blanket was transformed into King Henry VIII’s cape, a curtain was used to make the dress of Catherine of Aragon, multi-colored plastic toys adorned the banner of Utopia, and brass instruments such as trumpets, tuba-bells and copper piping fashioned the Golden Latrines, (of Thomas More’s Utopia), into root-toot-tooting park-bootie doodie-chutes. In each of the set-pieces and costumes created with “flea-objects,” it was possible to detect the spirit of the market of origin and the peculiar idiosyncrasies of the purchase/discovery-experience.

About the Upcycling Costumes  

 With a firm basis in historical research- that examined images and patterns from the time of King Henry VIII and drew inspiration from the work of Bruegel- the materials were re-crafted to quote both historical and contemporary trends in fashion and reflect the central action of the play itself: a major political/socio-economic upheaval between the un-apologetically opulent King and the worker/subjects, who revolt to join Thomas More in his proto-socialist experiment, Utopia. 

 Shakespeare im Park

In this new society the actors strip themselves of their heavily influenced “renaissance” peasantry togs, and remain wearing only underwear, over which their new utilitarian poly-urethane multi-purpose “work-clothes” (purchased at Modulor) are draped, wrapped or tucked by Thomas More himself. 

 

Germany Shakespeare Open-Air

With a simple cut, the plastic costumes were used to “carry the set”  from scene to scene. Their functionality combined with their poetry of movement in the park’s summer sunset- light brought a scintilla- ting, oft times crackly texture to the performance.

 Text by Arianne Vitale Cardoso and Maxwell Flaum

 

Map with the Berliner Flomarkets

 

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