… if you are in berlin on Wednesday, Thursday or Friday (8,9 & 10 March). Back to the Present is the first work of Constanza that i have seen (in the original version that played in the summer of 2003 in and abandoned, turn of the century warehouse in Berlin). This version was followed by a slightly adapted stage version that played at Schaubühne and was shown in among other places in Avignon, Bangalore, Madras and New Delhi and Tokyo. Now it is back in Berlin after more than a year and i am really looking forward to see it again. I just browsed the dorky park website to find a picture (but as it is all in flash that is more or less useless…) and came across a pdf document that claims to be a synopsis of the piece, which is somehow hard to believe, but it does contain a number associative gems that somehow capture the spirit of the show (text by Kevin Slavin):
Spirit. Meantime, we got robots on Mars. Just browsing. Just looking. We call one Spirit, and the other Opportunity. I’m not making this up: Spirit and Opportunity. Spirit is a disaster. It’s sending back signals, and the signals are garbage. If it’s communicating with something, it’s not with us. And another thing: it’s staying up all night. Spirit was supposed to sleep every night, to recharge the batteries, otherwise it will run out of power and die on Mars. Sleeping robots. What we don’t have, we make. What we have already, we make again. That it fails is no surprise. That ten million miles from home, a robot stays up all night, it’s no surprise.
Many years ago, Chicago was young, and pissing in the water it drank from. A fullgrown city dumping its garbage in the river it was built on, drinking from the river it was brushing teeth with. The water went foul, there were epidemics, people died. Come 1900, Chicago wakes up, builds a wall. Blocks off the lake upstream, turns that river around. Let’s be clear on this: they reversed a river.They turned a river around, so they could drink from upstream, so they could drink from the lake and piss in the river, now heading down- stream to the rest of America. If you understand this, you understand America’s twentieth century. If you understand this, you understand what it’s like to crash, lying in the street with liquid shit running down your legs, you understand what it’s like to betaken to the hospital, hooked up to machines. Someone had to think of that, reversing the river to send Chicago’s shit and garbage down Mississippi, someone dreamed that up. Someone else dreamed the crash and the streets to crash on. Somewhere, someone else dreamed of the ambulance. BACK TO THE PRESENT.
And then of course there is the slogan on the BttP sticker from 2003:
Memory is fragile, garbage lasts for ever.
Best statement about life i have come across so far. Seriously! So go see this show!