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Oct. 12, 2011
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The 8th Berlin Arts Festival International Theater Season (Berliner Festspiele- spielzeiteuropa) begins (Oct. 6, 2011 – Jan. 28, 2012)
With the designation spielzeiteuropa meaning the time of European theater, the Theater Season of the Berliner Festspiele opened on October 6th. This season will present the last program assembled by the artistic directors until now, Brigitte Furle and Joachim Sartorius. Its lineup brings 11 works from eight countries, including European countries the USA and the island nation of Samoa in Oceania.
To begin with, there will be two works by the Samoan choreographer Lemi Ponifasio, who emerged on the international scene in 2010. The opening work is Le Savali: Berlin, meaning “Journey: Berlin” in Samoan. This is a world premiere piece with music by contemporary composer Fabrizio Cassol and performed by Ponifasio’s own company MAU in collaboration with performers, dancers, musicians, and a choir from Berlin. The second work is Birds with Sky Mirrors which premiered last year at Theater der Welt and it deals with the “Pacific Garbage Highway” created by sea currents that bring concentrations of floating garbage to Samoa.
Works from around Europe include Sasha Waltz’s Continu from Germany, DV8 Physical Theatre’s Can We Talk About This? from the UK, Stephane Braunschweig’s Tage unter (Dager Under) from France, Hofesh Shechter’s Political Mother: The Choreographer’s Cut from the UK and from Italy The Minister’s Black Veil based on a short story by Nathaniel Hawthorne with involvement by Romeo Castellucci, among a number of other premiering works from Germany and the German-speaking countries.
From America, Peter Sellars presents Desdemona based on a novel by Toni Morrison and with music collaboration from Rokia Traoré Tchammantché as another highlight of the program.
Prior to the start of the festival, one of the leading directors of Arabic theater, Fadhel Jaïbi, was invited from Tunisia in September with a production of Yahia Yaïch Amnesia (written and acted by Jalila Baccar, music by Art Zoyd) depicting the inescapable hopelessness of young people in Tunisia before the Jasmine Revolution.
All the works on the program were produced as international collaborations presenters such as festivals from around Europe.

Festival Outline
The Berliner Festspiele was established in 1951 to encourage interaction with artists from throughout Europe and the world. It ran as a series of 12 festivals and events held year-round, and among the 12 was the International Theater Season (spielzeit’europa) held every year from October to January. It started in 2004 as a new festival introducing outstanding theatre and dance productions from Europe and related sources at the Haus der Berliner Festspiele. Without limiting itself to Europe, the festival is also seeking to present artists with perspectives “from the outside.” For 2011, Brigitte Furle served as artistic director for International Theater Season and Joachim Sartorius was artistic director for the overall Berliner Festspiele.
+The Berliner Festspiele- spielzeiteuropa