You are about to immerse into a performative installation of memories. Our testifiers hold memories that will be shared with you through self-directed interaction. The way you can explore the installation is based on a series of options and primarily on your choices: you may start your exploration of memories by interacting with any of the stories and their beholders, in any order, offering the amount of time you consider. While standing in the neutral area, you will be able to see the testifiers but they will only start addressing you when you approach the ‘LISTENING AREA’. If you choose to approach the ‘Q&A AREA’, you will be able to ask questions or share your own memories with the performer and the rest of the audience in your proximity.
By deciding the route, the time or the scripting of your interaction, you will be creating a new story, a new performance. You will be directing your Memodrome experience.
17 november 2017 / 18:00 – 20:00
1 Belgrave Square, London, SW1X 8PH
Mariana comes from Arad in western Romania. One day she is painting portraits to British tourists arriving on the Black Sea coast and the next day she is being investigated by the Securitate (Security of the State). With a 30 years’ prison sentence on several counts including ‘conspiring against the state’, the young artist is rescuing herself from the abusive hands of the dictatorial system by seeking refuge to England. A story of an incredible escape and a testimony on life as a refugee.
Vinicius comes from a traditional family from Maramures. He was only two at time of the anti-Communist revolution and his memories of those confusing times are mingled with stories and histories mediated by the channels of formal education. However, his father warned him that ‘history’ could tell lies, while geography will teach him about the world. He left his native country to discover the world and plans to return home one day with a family of his own.
Loredana was born in Balan, a copper mining town in Harghita. She holds strong memories of the 80’s, she remembers in many details the life under Romanian communism and the excitement of the Revolution. Holding close to her heart the mesmerising landscapes of her native place, Loredana’s experience speaks of loosing a home and finding a new one, about leaving an identity behind only to travel miles in hope to reconnect with herself.
Ana is a different person in English, Romanian or Russian. She becomes the language she speaks. Being born in USSR, on a territory once belonging to Romania, she can’t remember if the words from the shops signs where written in Russian or Romanian, but she definitely remembers the Cyrillic alphabet. She left her home twice: first she said goodbye to her native Republic of Moldova in search of how “real Romanians are” and then, later on, she left Romania for London to follow her heart.
Janos lived in a mixed community of Hungarians and Romanians in the village of Hogiz. His grandma kept the family together and made sure that no strangers would destroy the harmony and safety she envisioned for her home environment. Later on, walking on memory lane, Janos will remember things that would reveal hidden meanings. From poverty to luxury, his journey speaks of being different in a time and a place where different could have been dangerous.
Memodrome:Home performative installation opens the door to a new spectacular experience, guiding the audience into the memories of real beholders of life histories. Five people from the Romanian community living in London will be testifying on their experience of home and migration.
This storytelling display of testimonies allows the audience to participate in the devising of new narratives by acting into tasks and decisions and by sharing their own memories of home.
Intimate and exploratory, with no traditionally written script, the performance invites to personal connection, shared empathy and self-directed interaction with performers. It opens questions of belonging and national identity and speaks of the multileveled concept of owning a place in the world.
The five testifiers of different generations come from various cultural and geographical areas of Romania and possess memories of life during and in the aftermath of communism, of losing and discovering new homes, of searching into their identities.
The two hour performance is followed by an hour of Q&A with the Memodrome:Home team and the audience for the purpose of collecting feedback in regards to the impact of the Memodrome methodology, a practice developed by Anca Doczi during her PhD research within the University of East London.
We are grateful for your participation!
Concept and research: Anca Doczi Production: Cristian Luchian Performers: Mariana Gordan, Loredana Ivanov, János Nagy, Ana Țurcanu, Vinicius Leș