Monkeys, LUTKE 2018

Monkeys, performed by people and machines, will be a journey into the reality of a group of exotic robotic monkeys. These beings, designed to the last detail, live in a mechanical universe erasing the distinctions between human beings and machines, between the “living” and the “dead”. As if not being aware of the outside world, the monkeys live in their perfect, artificial microcosm. In this complicated common world, various species of monkeys make love, give birth and die. They worship their god and play. They are cruel to each other, but also caring. Robotic monkeys were made to arouse in us a feeling of a deep identification, on the one hand, and trigger a reflection on how they differ from human beings and their “thoughts”, on the other. This wandering between compassion and distance creates the stage reality of contradictions and emotional tension.
The characters appearing in the performance will be hybrids of monkeys (the predecessors of human beings) and robots (the potential successors of human beings).

The performance, which Drori and his team conceived and handcrafted over a period of five years, is marked by tools boasting minute details almost bordering on obsession – more than 300 machines on stage provide a detailed presentation of the anatomical features and facial expressions of the characters. The project uses the so-called open-source technologies, EMG, traditional and contemporary techniques of wood and metal working and processing.

The theatre director and set designer Amit Drori is the director of the Hazira Performance Art Arena, Jerusalem. In the last ten years, he developed a unique theatre of visions, characterised by performances based on one’s expression through images, animated forms and physical computing. In this process, he simultaneously develops dramatic and visual elements. During the performance, he then uses them on stage in a unique way.

The performance will be staged in the framework of the European project N.A.P.P., which contributes to the development of contemporary approaches in puppetry in relation to digital art, enabling the extension of the reference space of puppets to new hybrid forms of performing arts. The project joins four famous European institutions with a rich puppetry heritage from Belgium (Centre de la Marionnette de la Communauté Française de Belgique), Slovenia (Ljubljana Puppet Theatre), Romania (Teatrul Municipal Tony Bulandra) and France (Action Culturelle du Val de Lorraine).

Premiere: 10th April 2018, Stage under the Stars LGL
LGL, Hazira – Performance Art Arena, Jeruzalem (Israel), TJP CDN d’Alsace and Theatre Garonne, Toulouse (France). // In cooperation with Maison de la Marionnette, Tournai (Belgium), Israel Festival, Jerusalem and Fest Factory, Bat Yam (Israel)
Director, author, set design: Amit Drori
Co-author, lighting design: Ofer Laufer
Dramaturgy: Sylwia Drori
Mehatronics and programming: Zvika Markfeld, Nils Houtteman, Amit Drori, Ofer Zvik
Hardware: Ofer Zvik
Coding and software: Zvika Markfeld, Nils Houtteman, Amit Drori
Production: Amit Drori, Ofer Laufer, Sylwia Drori, Nils Houtteman, Polona Černe
Cast: Amit Drori, Sylwia Drori, Ofer Laufer
15.09.2018 at 20:00
Stage: Stage Under the Stars