Orestes in Mosul

Milo Rau / NTGent

  • Theatre
  • Spanish premiere
  • Country: Belgium
  • Language: Dutch, Arabic and English (with Spanish surtitles)
  • Approximate duration: 1 hour and 40 minutes
  • Year of Production: 2019
Director: Milo Rau
Text: Milo Rau y la compañía
Interpreters: Susana Abdul Majid, Duraid Abbas Ghaieb, Bert Luppes, Elsie de Brauw, Marijke Pinoy y Johan Leysen
Video actors: Khalid Rawi, Khitam Idress, Risto Kübar y Baraa Ali
Video musicians: Zaidun Haitham, Suleik Salim Al-Khabbaz, Firas Atraqchi, Saif Al-Taee y Nabeel Atraqchi
Video Chorus: Mustafa Dargham, Rayan Shihab Ahmed, Ahmed Abdul Razzaq Hussein, Hassan Taha, Younis Anad Gabori, Hatal Al-Hianey, Abdallah Nawfal y Mohamed Saalim
Dramaturgy: Stefan Bläske
Composition and musical arrangements: Saskia Venegas Aernoudt
Movie: Moritz von Dungern y Daniel Demoustier
Scenography: ruimtevaarders
Director's assistant: Katelijne Laevens
Production manager: Noemi Suarez Sánchez
Costume: An De Mol
Lighting: Dennis Diels
Manager: Marijn Vlaeminck
Video technician: Stijn Pauwels
Lighting technicians: Dennis Diels y Geert De Rodder
Editing: Joris Vertenten
Sound technician: Dimitri Devos
Surtitle creator: Eline Banken
Surtitling: Noemi Suarez Sánchez, Katelijne Laevens
Stage technician: Jeroen Vanhoutte
Costume assistants: Micheline D'Hertoge y Nancy Colman
Dramaturgy internships: Liam Rees, Eline Banken
Assistant director internship: Bo Alfaro Decreton
Production manager: Elli De Meyer
Producción: NTGent
Co-production: Schauspielhaus Bochum, Tandem Scène Nationale
With the support of: Romaeuropa Festival y The Belgian Tax Shelter
Orestes in Mosul is a new landmark in the contemporary adaptation of classical texts”.
Kester Freriks, NRC

Milo Rau of Switzerland is the current artistic director of NTGent in Belgium, and one of the most acclaimed and controversial figures of European theatre for his markedly politically shows. For many critics, he is the most influential, ambitious and interesting director of his generation. Among other accolades, he received the Europe Theatre Prize in 2018. Rau is an agitator who is also a journalist, lecturer, playwright, director and the founder of the International Institute of Political Murder, an artistic collective focused on exploring and researching new political art forms. He has published more than fifty plays, films, books, exhibitions and artistic activities throughout his career.

Ever since his play The Last Days of the Ceausescus, on the trial and execution of the Communist leader of Romania and his spouse, erupted on stage in 2009, Rau's name has been linked to controversy. Through theatre, he has denounced political corruption, homophobia, fanaticism, violence, torture or the abuse of power, earning himself powerful enemies and court cases. But following the maxim that theatre must change the world and not merely depict it, his montages have served to apportion responsibilities. He is persona non grata in Russia for depicting the repression of the feminist punk group Pussy Riot in one of his plays, and in The Congo Tribunal he denounced the mining industry's complicity in the massacres related to coltan mining, leading to the resignation of two ministers of the African nation.

When he was nominated director of the NTGent in 2018, Rau published a series of points in his manifesto on how he would direct the artistic project. Among them, at least one production per season would be rehearsed or staged in a war zone. This constitutes an attempt to take theatre where it is really needed. Within this context emerges Orestes in Mosul, which transfers the Oresteia to the devastated landscape of Mosul, in the north of Iraq, former capital of the Islamic State, drawing a parallel -without embellishment, almost in a documentary fashion- between ravaged Troy and destroyed Mosul; between Agamemnon who sacrificed his daughter Iphigenia to win the war, and the women, children, homosexuals and civilians who were murdered by the Islamic State militants. Inaugurated in Mosul in March 2019, with a script written by Stefan Bläske and an international cast of Iraqi and European actors Orestes In Mosul presents us with an Oresteia for our times which demonstrates that the echoes of the bloody tragedy by Aeschylus, considered one of the foundational texts of Western civilisation, still resonates today.

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