12/05  | 20:30
    13/05  | 18:00
    14/05  | 20:30
    15/05  | 20:30

€ 16 / € 13
55 min
Farsi > FR / NL

Meet the artist after the performance on 13/05

The future is within reach. It is 2070 and a young woman is attempting to learn more about the suspect disappearance of her grandfather more than fifty years earlier. She is confident of finding out the truth and determined to bring it to light. But there is a lack of evidence… the talented Iranian theatre artist Azade Shahmiri is bringing her work to the Brussels stage for the first time. In Voicelessness, she sketches the moving portrait of a young woman who is desperately looking for an anchorage point in a dystopian world. Where can the truth be found? This court case reflects the elusive society of a country where freedom of expression is stifled but creativity is bubbling away beneath the surface. The chimeras the main character is after show us the present day seen from the future. How will future citizens of the world judge our era? Voicelessness develops a delicate story by mingling voices, viewpoints and time and is powerful in its simplicity.

Concept & direction
Azade Shahmiri

Soheil Amirsharifi, Azade Shahmiri

Shadi Karamroudi, Azade Shahmiri

Soheil Amirsharifi

Technical direction
Ali Shirkhodaei

Light design
Ali Kouzehgar

Music composition
Adib Ghorbani

Costume design
Marzie Seyedsalehi

Performers on video
Behzad Dorani, Sajad Tabesh, Hoda Heidari, Mariam Rahimivand

Video camera
Navid Moheymanian, Vahid Alvandifar

Video sound recording
Hadi Manavipour

Video editing & color correction
Mohsen Kheyrabadi

Sound mixing
Hossein Ghourchian

Video assistance
Mohammad Mehdi Chakeri

French translation & subtitles adaptation
Massoumeh Lahidji

Photo credits
Zarvan Rouhbakhshan

With special thanks to
Amin Zamani

Thanks to
Fatemeh Fakhraee, Hamid Pourazari, Saba Kasmaei, Ehsan Fouladi Fard, Negar Nemati, Sahar Saba, Alireza Karamroudi

Babel Subtitling (Frédéric Génicot, Pamela Grillet-Paysan)

Kunstenfestivaldesarts, Les Brigittines

Kunstenfestivaldesarts, Zürcher Theater Spektakel

Delegate producer
Pierre Reis (Mehr Theatre Group)

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What happens to our voices, words and sounds when they leave our mouths and become separated from us? Where do they go? Are they going to continue to exist independently somewhere else? Will they come back to us one day? If we should ever have access one day to voices from the past, if this unforeseeable future were to facilitate us in accessing what is currently this irreversible past, could the voices reveal what was experienced in the past by those without voices?

Voicelessness is our image of the human world some fifty-five years on in Iran; a child digging into a past which is our own present today. To understand the world, the child has no choice but to reconstruct a selective story based on video excerpts and voices left behind in order to bring an end to the complexes of past that have become the issues of today. Ultimately the child wants to stop the past and prevent it from being so omnipresent in the present. This story is not necessarily valid, but rather approvable, convincing and comprehensible for everyone.

Here is this intrusive question again: if there is no evidence of a fact, does it mean it never happened? If there are signs to prove the existence of a fact, does it mean that it happened exactly as the evidence suggests it did? In future are we going to see the definition of truth and the evidence of it differently?

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Azade Shahmiri (b. 1982) is an Iranian theatre director, performer and playwright. She graduated in Dramatic Literature from the University of Tehran in 2009 and holds a PhD in Art Studies focusing on the subject of representations of the West in Iranian dramatic texts. Shahmiri’s first staged play Blind Track of Stars (2009), a semi-documentary text based on Franz Fanon’s diaries and letters, won an award at the 12th Iran International Festival of University Theatre and received critical acclaim. With two short pieces, As You Like it (2011), a solo performance performed in the East Gallery in Tehran, and Murder in Scriptorium (2011), a monodrama performed in Leev Monodrama Festival in Tehran, she began to centre on personal narratives and individual experiences as the material for her performances. Her latest artistic works include Not to Be (2016), a video installation commissioned by Theatre Festival Schwindelfrei, and Damascus (2013), a lecture-performance performed in Tehran, Zurich and Gwangju. As a freelance researcher and cultural journalist, Shahmiri has written for various art magazines and newspapers since 2004. She is currently a senior lecturer at Soore University in Tehran.

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