Dominique Peysson and Olivier Goulet.
Supported by the research program "Vocality in theater and opera" of the Iris "Creation, Cognition and Society" (EHESS) carried by PSL, for the four performances of Kein Licht Salle Favart in Paris, from 19 to 22 October 2017.
"Life is a vapour, a light mist that wets the palm of the hand, and then nothing",
Jaime Garcia Terres. That one was king.
Life is a vapor... and then nothing is vanity.
The performance begins with a tea ceremony. The hot drink is offered to the audience, while the two artists drink their own cup. Both then enter a large transparent block, which they close on themselves. The audience can see them through the glass, performing a very simple dance form based on the butô model. The gestures of everyday life are evoked, very slowly at first, then more and more quickly. Until the bodies at work exhale enough water vapour to cover the windows with mist, partially masking the bodies so that only the distorted silhouettes of the two performers are visible.
The communion between the artists and the audience is facilitated by the sensation of warmth that everyone can feel when drinking a hot cup of tea: it spreads throughout the bodies of each, as it does in those of the performers. The breath of life charges the air with a vapor that the artists will give us to see, to better disappear. It is through the bodies that the water circulates to the surface of the cabin. Our inner warmth, our breath, our movements, are the signs that we are alive and well. Our materiality is expressed by the body that exhales this water. But in doing so, it veils the image of the bodies, letting only ghostly silhouettes appear... The water removes them from everyone's sight. And then nothing.
Doesn't the Hebrew word "vanity" mean "steam, mist, breath, light breath"?