The Japan Foundation
Performing Arts Network Japan
Archive Index Home
Nov. 22, 2012
Presenter  Topics
Berliner Festspiele’s Foreign Affairs season (Sept. 28 – Oct. 26, 2012)
The international performing arts festival of the Berlin Festivals (Berliner Festspiele), launched in 2004 under the name spielzeiteuropa and now renamed of Foreign Affairs, ran from September 20 to October 26 this year. The artistic director of the 2012 festival was the founder of Brussels’ Kunsten Festival des Arts, Frie Leysen, and the program consisted of 22 works from 12 countries, including two world premieres. The festival opened with a grand scale performance of Las Multitudes by the Argentine director Federico León using 121 actors whose ages spanned five generations.
The world premieres on the program were the music monologue Die Zeit schlägt dich tot directed and performed by the famous German actor Fabian Hinrichs, known as the actor for works by René Pollesch; and the play We love Africa and Africa loves us by the Swedish visual artist Markus Öhrn that explores the manifestations of the other in the post-colonial age through the perspective of the European family system.
Other highlights of the program were the work of Danish choreographer Cecilie Ullerup Schmidt titled Schützen that deals with approaches to the use of weapons and combat; the work Pueden dejar lo que quieran by the Argentine director Fernando Rubio that deals with the subject of memories remaining in clothes; and the sound performance NORAE by Korean visual artist yeesookyung. All of these are European premieres.
Also on the program are Romeo Castellucci’s homage to the American painter Mark Rothko titled The Four Seasons Restaurant; South African Brett Bailey’s works Exhibit B and medEia dealing with the post-colonial era; and the dance work Enfant by Boris Charmatz exploring questions of child and adult and machines and human beings. From Japan, are Love’s Whirlpool by potudo-ru and Daisuka Miura, and Kyohei Sakaguchi’s work Mobile House.

Festival Outline
Berliner Festspiele was founded in 1951 with the aim of promoting discourse between artists of Europe and the world, and among the various festivals and events on its year-round schedule was the annual winter (October to January) “international theater season” launched in 2004 under the name spielzeiteuropa, which has now been relaunched as an international performing arts festival under the name Foreign Affairs. The artistic director for the 2012 festival is the founder of Brussels’ Kunsten Festival des Arts, Frie Leysen.
+Berliner Festspiele