Page 1

04-08. JULY 2017

The soul of Europe in the heart of Birmingham

BIRMINGHAM REPERTORY THEATRE “Some of the most innovative work being made across Europe” The Guardian

WWW.BEFESTIVAL.ORG Advance Tickets | Box Office 0121 236 4455. Or

All of Europe’s a stage Over the last eight years, since launching BE FESTIVAL, we have been regularly traveling between Birmingham and our first home, Madrid. We enjoy freedom of movement. But since last year's Brexit vote, our freedom as non UK citizens to live and work in the UK is suddenly in jeopardy. We feel a very real sense of uncertainty about what lies ahead for our children, for Europeans living in the UK and vice versa. Just as worrying is the negativity and division surrounding the message of Brexit and how antiquated, aggressive and mean-spirited notions of patriotism appear to have been normalised in countries around the world. We feel that BE FESTIVAL has never had more relevance and a greater responsibility than right now, one year since the referendum. Here, in the inclusive city of Birmingham, the multifaceted cultural identities and creativity of a continent will once again be celebrated through performance and art. In line with the fractured nature of Europe, the title of the theme for this year’s festival is Europe drawing the Line: Physical and Imaginary Borders. In addition to the dizzying array of entertainment on offer, there will be a healthy platform for debate and expression throughout the festival and we expect this year to be particularly lively and energetic with audiences and artists buzzing around the various nooks and crannies of The REP.

It is with a renewed sense of spirit and determination that we welcome every one of you to the city’s summer festival of arts.


Isla Aguilar and Miguel Oyarzun – Directors of BE FESTIVAL

As we look further ahead to the eventuality of Brexit and beyond we must focus on building bridges within our communities with the ultimate aim of breaking down borders, that serve only to divide us. At BE FESTIVAL we are immensely thankful and proud to have Birmingham residents providing temporary homes for all our visiting artists and if ever there was an example of the kind of outward, inclusive community spirit and action needed, it is here on our own doorstep in Birmingham where we can look for inspiration.


04-08. JULY



Tickets & Prices



Dinner Menu


Birmingham Repertory Theatre (Back Door via Cambridge Street entrance)

Performing Arts Programme


Early Ideas (Works in Progress)


British Enough? (Site-Specific)


Jury & Awards


Festival Highlights


Feedback Café & Discussions


Early Ideas p. 16 | 08 July | 12pm | £5 / £3

Visual Arts


British Enough? p. 17 | various times | £5 / £3

BE Late Stage (Music)


The Hub Bar & Karma Currency


* access to all Studio shows only



BOX OFFICE: 0121 236 4455





Online credit card bookings incur 3% fee per transaction, debit card bookings incur a 50p fee per transaction.

Team & Credits




TICKETS & TIMES Studio Shows pp. 6-15 | 04-08 July | 7pm Day Tickets £22 / £20 (£14 / £12 without dinner)* Weekly Pass £100 (£60 without dinner)*

Concessions include: Over 65, students & unemployed

INTERVAL DINNER is served each night on the main stage where audiences and artists mingle and enjoy a tasty feed. 3




Breaded Pollock



Roast Garlic & Vegetable Couscous Spanish Garden Salad Pork Parmigiana


(v – Feta, Tomato & Rice Stuffed Peppers) Red Pepper Tomato Sauce, Penne Mixed Leaf, Balsamic & Shallot Salad Beef Tagine (v – Chickpeas & Tomato Tagine)


Interval Dinner Menu


Food Thought

(v – Citrus Marinated Tofu Onions & Peppers)

Red Pepper Couscous Spanish Garden Salad Beef Lasagne (v – Vegetarian Lasagne)


Chunky, Leaf, Tomato & Crouton Salad

Every night, ticket holders can enjoy a dinner that is served on the REP’s main stage at approximately 8.15pm, lasting an hour.

When purchasing your festival tickets, buy your dinner at the same time and save £2! You will still be able to buy dinner tickets on the door at £10 each.

Chicken, Squash & Spinach Balti (v – Butternut Squash & Spinach Balti)


We welcome back Marmalade catering team and you can expect plenty of European dishes and diverse, fresh and locally sourced products with a vegetarian option served every night.

Caramelised Pineapples & Bananas, Toffee Sauce

Coriander Steamed Rice Crushed Peas

Every meal is served with fresh fruit and bread. 5

Tue 04

From 7pm

Performing Arts Programme © Alessia Bombacci

This year, the festival opens with the arrival of ASINGELINE – MAMAZA’s 2-kilometer long line of red tape onto the REP’s stage (p. 27) – followed by a full length show, Indomador. After the interval dinner, the competition gets underway and our signature four 30min shows a night returns. On Saturday, the shows still in competition will finish just before dinner and whilst the jury deliberates, the festival will conclude with another great full length performance Anatomía Pública (p. 15).



Out of Competition

Animal Religion Spain | 55 min A comical, punchy look at the way we build our identities. A solo performer dresses up in high heels, animal masks and a suit jacket. He occupies different roles, tumbling through handstands, acrobatics and an array of characters. An act of grotesque, contemporary circus, it pokes fun at the rigid associations we have with certain clothes or styles of dress. Bringing out their inner animal, it’s about the common instincts binding us together. Animal Religion are a circus company based in Catalonia, making work that explores the strangeness of our everyday routines.

Main Programme

© Oliver Baxter

© Laurent Philippe


Aerobics! - A Ballet in 3 Acts

Bertrand Lesca & Nasi Voutsas

Paula Rosolen / Haptic Hide

UK | 30 min

Germany | 30 min

Exploring revenge and the politics of destruction, Palmyra prompts us to look beyond the news. Inspired by the destruction of Syria’s historical sites, it’s a political drama that mixes fact and fiction. Musing on what we consider to be barbarian, it’s about questioning civilisation and what lies beneath it. Created by Nasi Voutsas and Bertrand Lesca, Greek and French respectively, whose previous show EUROHOUSE probed the aftermath of the Greek referendum.

Recalling the ‘80s-born trend for aerobics, this show merrily re-imagines the iconic sports and exercise regime. A carefully choreographed dance performance structured across three distinct acts; placing aerobics’ style and approach in a different context, rhythm and form are balanced with a tight precision. Putting new kinds of emphasis on the sport in question, new kinds of wonder are found in the movement they explore. The company Haptic Hide was formed in 2015, by choreographer Paula Rosolen whose work explores the dance that’s hidden in popular culture and the everyday. Realising her subjects in unusual settings, they’re always framed inside her unique perspective. 7

Wed 05

From 7pm

© Rob Hogeslag

© Sébastien Moitrot


The Sensemaker

Portraits and Short Stories

Woman’s Move

Panama Pictures

Switzerland | 30 min

The Netherlands | 30 min

Contrasting music and spoken word in a chopped-andspliced soundtrack, The Sensemaker is a story of managing expectations. Smartly dressed, waiting beside the phone, we watch the protagonist of this one-woman show as she’s slowly stretched to her limits. Straining to keep her tightly orchestrated routine in time, panicked looks and jerky motions appear, as dance steps are just about matched to a quick-switching backing track. Flipping between different languages and genres of music – calling to mind the arduous ecosystem of EU bureaucracy – she’s gradually pushed to the limit. With support from Swiss Cultural Fund UK, Woman’s Move is a company, born of three artists’ desire to collaborate on projects spanning contemporary dance, music and design.

Using ropes, trampolines and daring acrobatics, this show explores the relationships binding families and different generations together. Featuring six male performers aged 20 to 60, Portraits and Short Stories is a careful balancing act of shifting dynamics. Unpicking father-and-son relationships, it traces the lines bridging youthful bravado with quiet vulnerability. Moving at a steady, reflective pace, it finds touching insights into family ties and getting older. Based in the South of the Netherlands, with a company drawn from around the world, Panama Pictures have a track record for distinctive productions.

© Carlos Gomes

© Alice Brazzit

Everything is OK Marco D’Agostin Italy | 30 min A one-man show of cultural and sensory overload. Fronted by Italian solo performer Marco D’Agostin, Everything Is OK combines spoken word, music and dance; challenging our ability to compute endless information. Recycling lyrics, postures and movements in different languages, and from vast, disparate corners of popular culture, the show jumps around at a breakneck speed. How much can we absorb before we’re exhausted, or we can’t pay attention any longer? Marco has danced for companies such as Societas Raffaello Sanzio, and since 2010 has been developing – and received several awards for – his own choreographic research.

My Country Is What The Sea Doesn’t Want Casa Da Esquina Portugal | 30 min A story of Portuguese immigrants in the UK, we see a generation divided by the harsh reality of their homeland. Based on interviews with individuals who’ve settled in the UK, this is also the personal story of writer-director Ricardo Correia. With the austerity measures implemented in Portugal following 2008’s financial crisis, he is one of many young people who’ve moved abroad to try and find opportunities. Torn between staying or leaving, it explores an inner turmoil born of this particular set of circumstances. Casa Da Esquina is a Portugal-based company exploring connections between performance, photography, writing and beyond. 9

Thu 06

From 7pm

© David Ruiz

© Jamie Allan




Romain Teule

Kulunka Teatro

France / Portugal | 30 min

Spain | 30 min

A performance lecture on the nature of language, Légende unpicks the different kinds of questions produced by words. Beginning with a fictional language of the birds, Romain Teule’s show probes the different possibilities to be found in words. Living and working between France and Portugal, his show was originally performed in Portuguese; adapting it for BE 2017, his existential questions will now be posed in English. Uncovering the instances where words fail, and what powers they have, it’s a thoughtful show prompting re-evaluations about what things we take for granted.

A story about holding onto the simple and everyday as we grow older. Solitudes traces the protagonist’s struggle with feeling disconnected and misunderstood as he approaches old age. As with Kulunka’s previous work, the cast wear full-masks which show striking, characterful expressions. The play follows the protagonist’s journey to communicate the importance of the day-to-day habits which make up his existence. With no dialogue, body language and movement are used to present characters’ relationships. A Spain-based company, Kulunka were awarded Audience Prize at BE 2011 and have toured the world with André & Dorine.

© Philipp Weinrich

© Kiki Papadopoulou



Ki Omos Kineitai

Anna Aristarkhova

Greece | 30 min

Germany | 30 min

A dark, engrossing story of imminent danger, Betelgez is balanced on an unstable equilibrium. A star named Betelgez is on the brink of supernova. A comparison between the explosion of a star and eruptions of social unrest, a collage of short shots of commanding political speeches are broadcast in the background. The show’s four dancer-acrobats perform aerial feats of circus display. With a tangible sense of risk from the beginning, the dimly lit stage sees tensions stretched thin. Started in 2003, Ki Omos Kinetai combine dance, circus and other creative disciplines.

Through evocative, abstract dance, this show draws the connections forged through acknowledging our differences. In many ways, a hug could be considered a shared, universal expression: a simple gesture of empathy or affection, understood no matter where you are. But in Obnimashki, the international performers which make up the show – from Russia, France, Germany, Lithuania and Japan – explore the subtly different meanings which the gesture can hold. Dispersed around the stage, they oscillate between individual experiences and shared moments. Choreographer Anna Aristarkhova has studied dance and choreography, and now works from Berlin as a freelance artist.


Fri 07

From 7pm

© Stefano Bianchi


© Alex Kat

40.000 centimetri quadrati


Claudia Catarzi

ODC Ensemble / Vyrsodepseio

Italy | 30 min

Greece | 30 min

Paring her movements down to the essential, Claudia Catarzi finds possibilities in a restricted space. This piece’s action takes place in a small, enclosed square, spot-lit in a corner of the stage. Positioned within it, Claudia executes a poised, carefully staged piece of dance, exploring the boundaries she’s confined within. The audience is witness to her own discovery of her body’s possibilities. Giving herself such tight, constricting borders, it’s captivating seeing her realise her potential inside them. Receiving accolades for previous solo shows Qui, ora and Sul punto, Claudia Catarzi has carved out her own distinct approach to dance.

Rejecting the flat, washed out image often painted of Greece’s capital, this is an Athens that’s bursting with life. In REVOLT ATHENΣ, the three-piece, politically-minded cast offer insights into post-crisis Greece. In ODC Ensemble’s unique city guide, activist communities are framed in terms of Greece’s wider history; intertwined with figures of Greek mythology, there are tear gas-choked riots against government austerity cutbacks. Combining actors, video footage and music, it’s a multi-faceted window into the living and breathing reality of a place. ODC Ensemble are an international, politically-oriented group, whose work often incorporates non-actors in public spaces.

©Abel Photography

©Zsófia Hevér

What Does Stuff Do?

Waiting for Schrödinger

Robin Boon Dale

Timothy and the Things

UK | 30 min

Hungary | 30 min

Using innovative juggling, physical comedy, and almostphilosophy to guide you through Robin Dale’s mind and body of research. Featuring pouring, ping pong, and a motivational speech delivered by a man in swimming trunks, this is a charmingly rhetorical debut show. Please, suspend for the next 30 minutes any scepticism about the value of the totally obvious. A recent graduate from Circomedia in Bristol, Robin has been training in object manipulation and physical theatre. He performs in a wide variety of styles, including contemporary circus, stand-up comedy, and cabaret/burlesque.

Translating scientific hypotheses into real-life connections. Referenced in this show’s title, Schrödinger's cat is a thought experiment where an interpretation of quantum mechanics is applied to human interactions: based around a cat that may be simultaneously both alive and dead, it’s a state known as a quantum superposition. This show puts that hypothesis into new contexts; colliding and interacting in a tense, slowly plotted arc of interrelated movements, the show’s five dancers appear abstract and human at the same time. Choreographer László Fülöp is based in Budapest, developing dance projects that explore the spaces between psychology and performance. 13

From 7pm

BE nEXT UK | 15 min

© Alex Brenner

Sat 08

© François Stemmer

The curtain call for BE 2017, it’s a chance to see the next generation of performers led by professional dancer and movement teacher Marina Santo and theatre practitioner, Anna Himali Howard. A younger generation find their voice. Working in unison to create a physical theatre performance, this youth theatre initiative sees local 14 to 19 year olds from a range of backgrounds take to the stage. An inclusive project specifically aimed at young people that speak English as an additional language, refugees, asylum seekers and those who are homeless or at risk of being homeless. The programme is free and gives participants a nationally recognised Arts Award. “BE Next is an art itself. For me, it is a programme designed to better yourself and break past barriers and limits.” Mohammed Irfan Arshad 14

Out of Competition

Homo Furens Plan-K / Filipe Lourenço France | 30 min Re-imagining the experience of soldiers’ military training, Homo Furens is about pushing beyond what we thought we were capable of. Drawing inspiration from Stanley Kubrick’s Full Metal Jacket, this show sees the rigours and extremities of military existence expressed through dance. Led by esteemed choreographer Filipe Lourenço, it expresses soldiers’ difficulties in balancing individual needs with those of their comrades. This show inspects the different responses to the harsh, unpredictable nature of conflicts that soldiers must be prepared for. Founded in 2011, this is the third show Filipe Lourenço has produced with his Plan-K company.

© Mamen Ortiz

© Axel Perez


Anatomia publica

Vicente Arlandis & Hipólito Patón

Man Drake / Tomeo Vergès

Out of Competition

Spain | 30 min

Spain / France | 60 min

A playful dialogue testing the limits of language. Watching an extended conversation between the show’s two characters, this piece gently probes the way we communicate with one another. Beginning with exchanges of simple noises and sound, the two characters move to phrases which are stated, repeated and re-formed. Speaking a mixture of Spanish and English, it creates an increasingly blurred sense of language. Turning words and idioms on their head, it’s a comical window into our everyday idiosyncrasies. Founding Valencia’s LOSQUEQUEDAN company in 2001, this show reflects director-performer Vicente Arlandis’ wider interests in visual arts and philosophy.

A story of strange, fractured relationships in the aftermath of war. Returning from the army after being presumed dead, a soldier comes home to find his wife remarried. Performed in an intense style that bridges physical theatre and dance, a three-way relationship unfolds. Inspired by autobiographical details and by filmmaker Martin Arnold's work on mechanical breakdowns, jolts and short-circuits, the cast’s movements are broken down into their constituent parts. Appearing hysterical and obsessive-compulsive, they stutter and fidget, before suddenly freezing like statues. Founded in 1992, Man Drake put an absurdist spin on the everyday – this show is another example of that playful approach.


Early Ideas

Sat 08

12 pm

The Door

£5 | 90 min

After the success and positive feedback from last year’s debut lunchtime scratch session, we present three different ‘works in progress’ plus the winners from last year. At the end, we invite audience members to leave feedback for the artists to help with the shows future development.Taking place at midday on Saturday in The Door at The REP. Arrive early and grab yourself some coffee and a cake.

All the Voices Tante&Tante UK / Greece | 30 min

An exploration of common sense, catchphrases and confusion alongside semi-improvised dance, both of which are interrogating fragmentation and structure. Lewys’s practice focuses on dance, but spans comedy, visual arts and devised theatre.

Back by popular demand as winners of last year’s Early Ideas competition, this eccentric sister-duo will be showcasing the toil of their awarded residency that began a week in advance of this year’s festival. Like siblings the world around, Eirini and Angelina Kartsaki have been ‘collaborating’ for many years, inventing games which could be played anywhere, at any time, in any context. During the summer of 2014 they decided to share these games with other people and the Tante&Tante (Aunties) project was born. Child’s play, antagonism and forgiveness all collide posing questions about the the sibling dynamic. The 15 minute, run out last year, was laugh-out-loud funny but what lies ahead is anyone’s guess.

Phrases Lewys Holt UK | 15 min

Site-Specific Per formance


We've Got Each Other


Thu 06: 3.30 / 4.20 / 5.10 / 10.30 / 11.20pm Fri 07: 10.30 / 11.20pm Sat 08: 3.30 / 4.20 / 5.10pm

Paul O’Donnell UK | 15 min

A play on a Bon Jovi stylised musical that is entirely imagined by the audience, exploring the pomp and circumstance of the modern juke-box musical. Paul O'Donnell is a solo theatre maker who exposes the 'ordinary' in a 'spectacular' fashion.

British Enough? Retiro Lucia Guarino Italy | 15 min

Winner of the Presente/Futuro Festival at Teatro Libero di Palermo, Lucia Guarino presents a one-woman show that plays with the idea of moving from the private space to the public and that courageous moment of taking the jump from the virtual precipice of the unknown.

Kristina Cranfeld & FoolishPeople

UK | 45 min

You have been selected for testing within the British Enough Testing Zones, an immersive theatrical site-specific experience set in a future where British Citizenship is the ultimate prize. Enter a world where Britishness is manufactured and cultural identity must be won through ingenuity, endurance and psychological testing. Leading audiences to secret locations within the venue, British Enough? is a collaboration between artist Kristina Cranfeld and writer/director John Harrigan, founder of FoolishPeople, exploring the physical and imagined spaces conjured by Brexit, in the borderlands of Britain’s future outside of the EU ( p. 27).


Lucie Mirkova has worked in the dance sector for over 15 years in a variety of roles – as a performer, teacher, choreographer, producer, manager and programmer. Currently she works as Executive Producer at DanceXchange, where she leads on programming regular performance seasons at The Patrick Centre and curates programmes for International Dance Festival Birmingham. She also leads and manages the Artist Development programme including the Associate Artists scheme and DX Choreography Award.

The Jury Panel

James Pidgeon is the Director of Shoreditch Town Hall in London. He is responsible for managing the multi-artform programme as well as all artist development and learning and engagement activity, and has produced the likes of Nigel Barrett & Louise Mari’s Basement Grotto, and Andrew Schneider’s YOUARENOWHERE. At the National Theatre, he was an assistant producer working with companies like Circa or WildWorks. Previous assignments include Battersea Arts Centre and Shakespeare’s Globe. He lectures at various Universities in London including the Royal Central School of Speech & Drama.


Selma Spahić has been the Artistic Director of International Theater Festival MESS in Sarajevo since 2012 – one the most prominent theatre festivals in South East Europe. Born in 1986, she graduated with a degree in Direction from the Academy of Performing Arts in Sarajevo. Since then she has directed plays, devised theatre pieces and led workshops in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Croatia, Montenegro, Slovenia and the UK. She is the assistant teacher of A Director’s Work with an Actor at the Academy of Performing Arts in Sarajevo. James Yarker is Artistic Director of Birmingham’s much loved, Stan’s Cafe – a theatre company he co-founded in 1991 shortly after graduating from Lancaster University. The first four editions of BE FESTIVAL were hosted at the company’s base at AE Harris. With a reputation as prolific theatrical innovators, Stan’s Cafe have toured the world with a series of radical performances and installations including It’s Your Film, The Black Maze, The Cleansing of Constance Brown, Of All The People In All The World and The Cardinals. In late 2017, they will tour the UK with Time Critical and are currently preparing their new production The Capital, for 2018. Salva Bolta developed his professional activities in the field of performing arts (production and management) and in the field of visual arts and museology. He was formerly director of the festival Escena Contemporánea in Madrid. Currently he is artistic director of the Tercera Setmana Festival in Valencia. As Assistant Director and artistic assistant, he has worked with Mariano Barroso, Robert Wilson, Gerado Vera and Bigas Luna in theatre and with Paco Azorín in opera, among others. In 1992 he made the leap to direction and was Coordinator of Artistic Direction at Centro Dramático Nacional between 2006 and 2012.

BE FESTIVAL 1st Prize Supported by The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama & Birmingham Repertory Theatre

£1500 plus a fully supported two-week creative residency in Birmingham and a performance of the full-length version of the winning show at next year’s festival.

ACT Festival Prize The winning performance will be programmed and supported at the Bilbao’s ACT Festival in June 2018.

MESS Festival Prize The winning performance will be programmed and supported at the International Theatre Festival MESS in Sarajevo in autumn 2018.

BE Awards

Teatro Libero di Palermo Prize The winning company will be programmed and supported at the Festival Presente Futuro in Palermo in spring 2018.

Festival Champ Libre Prize Création Artistique Emergente


The winning company will be invited to take part in a supported residency and a public performance taking place in Saint Junien, France in 2018.

Audience Prize Every night, each audience member will have the opportunity to vote for their favourite show with the most popular to be awarded the Audience Prize.

Closing Party & Awards Ceremony (Sat 08, 11pm till late) Open to everyone, the Awards Ceremony will begin at 11pm followed by the festival closing party.



PERFORMING ARTS Four shows every evening plus a Saturday lunchtime selection of scratch theatre.

pp. 6-17

p. 5


Global dishes served on the main stage every night during the interval. Vegetarian dishes too.

Closing Party & Awards

“Birmingham’s genre-bending European arts festival”

The final night is a grand fiesta with DJs and surprises. p. 19


The Hub & Bar The festival epicentre situated in the Construction Workshop of The REP with food, drinks and the muchloved festival Mojito served all day and night.


WORKSHOPS pp. 28-29 Birmingham based bands and DJs bringing the festival Hub to life with a mix of laid back acoustic sounds to the hot and funky. Free from 8pm till late.

p. 30

Artists will lead morning classes and workshops with a focus on performance, dance, production and sitespecific.

VISUAL ARTS & DISCUSSIONS The festival theme of ‘borders’ will guide the visual arts programme and the daily Feedback Café. pp. 22-27


Feedback Café & Discussions

Wed 05 Feedback Café is a unique and invaluable opportunity for audiences, artists and arts professionals to engage with each other, to discuss and look back at the previous evening’s performances over a coffee and a pastry. Taking place on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 3pm and Sunday at 12pm in The Hub. Daily discussions will be led by visual artists immediately after Feedback Café.

Thu 06

MAMAZA & Elizabeth Hudson A discussion on borders with artists, chaired by David Micklem*

Fri 07

Kristina Cranfeld & FoolishPeople

Sat 08

RL Wilson

Sat 08

Networking Lunch Meeting

1.30pm Main Stage

Our networking event takes place over lunch offering an invaluable opportunity for artists, promoters and producers to network and mingle. Take time out to introduce yourself to practitioners and industry professionals from across Europe and beyond. *David Micklem is a theatre producer, arts consultant and writer who previously worked as Joint Artistic Director at Battersea Arts Centre and as Senior Theatre Officer at Arts


Council England.

Visual Arts .UK Based .Europe Based .Beyond Europe

Europe: Drawing The Line. Physical & Imaginary Borders The Visual Arts programme at BE is a two-year cycle exploring a particular theme. In 2017-18, we invite artists to respond to the shifting attitudes toward physical and imaginary borders. Considering the increased tensions relating to freedom of movement in Europe’s borders, we’ve worked with artists pondering the ways in which cultural identities are contested. An enormous number of people continue to risk travel to Europe, seeking refuge from war and persecution. Following the Brexit vote and the Trump presidency in the USA, nationalistic sentiments are rising — bringing internal conflicts over sovereignty to the fore. Inviting six artists to be involved in our visual arts programme across the two years, we look forward to seeing those debates imaginatively re-framed within their work. 23

ASINGELINE, an enacted thought by MAMAZA (Germany)

The idea of a “red line” is often invoked in political debates. In the imminent negotiations over the terms of Britain’s exit from the EU, for example, both sides have laid out the policy lines they won’t cross. Elsewhere, it is often argued by newspapers and politicians of a certain ilk that political correctness has resulted in a dizzying array of red lines in terms of what you can or can’t say. In ASINGELINE, MAMAZA look to re-constitute the red line. By literally drawing a line between Birmingham’s Ladywood area and The Rep, the artists trace the connection between the city and its spaces for public arts. A straight line will run through public spaces — like parks, squares and high streets — as well as private ones, like houses, restaurants and bars. Realised in several different cities across the world, the project sees red lines re-imagined in a more communityminded context. The audience are invited to follow it across the city, with an accompanying exhibition to document the places the artists crossed to realise the finished line. MAMAZA is a performance and dance collective based in Frankfurt, Germany. Run by Fabrice Mazliah and May Zarhy, their work creates opportunities for collaboration. With roots in dance, their approach has blurred their own role between dancer and choreographer: encouraging audience participation, their work is open-ended and evolving. 24

British Enough? by Kristina Cranfeld and FoolishPeople (UK)

For those born in the UK, British identity is a loose and changeable concept. For those seeking citizenship from abroad, however, it’s the opposite: being subject to the government’s “Life in the UK” test, there are fixed, itemised cornerstones — which are deemed critical by immigration officials for fitting into British society. British Enough? critiques this regime through a future manifestation of the test. A collaboration between the artist and filmmaker Kristina Cranfeld with the writer and director John Harrigan (of FoolishPeople theatre company) around Kristina’s short film, Manufactured Britishness *. For this year’s festival, this video installation has been developed into a site-specific, immersive piece of theatre. The audience is invited to move through different assessment zones, participating in various, often bizarre, demonstrations of British values (p. 17). Together, the two strands of this project serve to question the notion of “becoming” British. By introducing the audience to a surreal process behind that idea, it exposes the test’s underlying values, and the political agendas guiding those values — with immigrants seen as exploitable material to support nationalistic identities and capitalist norms. Kristina’s work, presented through films, is concerned with transition and human identity. The FoolishPeople company, founded by John Harrigan in 1989, is an early innovator for immersive and ritual theatre. * Manufactured Britishness was previously presented in Birmingham at Ort Gallery.


FREE MOVEMENT by Elizabeth Hudson (UK)

Raven / Glass by RL Wilson (UK)

In Raven/Glass, RL Wilson unravels time and space through the lens of one particular place via a dual-screen installation. Sunrise and sunset illuminate the ancient and modern myths and histories, of a coastal estuary through a reflective, reflexive and playful experience, that transcends and subverts notions of borders. Developed during a month-long residency in Cumbria; the domestic and the universal, landscape and territorial occupation, are unpicked, abstracted then slowly re-connected using image and sound recorded in the space itself. Two screens act as your access point across an estuary of space; sounds slowly passing through or immersing you – reflecting a marking of the land and the marking of time – whilst appearing, paradoxically, to be of no recognisable time or place. For this installation, the audience must inhabit the space, placing your feet upon the sand and allowing the present to soak into you. Born in the UK, Wilson is a multidisciplinary artist working primarily with moving image, sound, performance and the written word. 26

A sculptural intervention around the site of The REP, Elizabeth Hudson’s Free Movement sees the audience’s movement disrupted and constrained. The different elements are arranged in a route which charts the borders between the theatre’s public and private spaces; marking the lines between front of house and backstage, or between audience and performer, it poses questions about the organisation of public space and who has authority within it. The design of the sculptural objects themselves is used to critique the misleading narratives created about the EU. Making reference to coercive design within public space, their appearance alludes to the spikes, bollards and railings which are found in streets and city squares; these are combined with the shapes of historical weaponry and a politically-loaded item of fruit: the banana. Taking the tabloid-concocted idea that the shape of bananas sold in Britain is controlled by the EU, Elizabeth’s piece playfully suggests a different perspective. That is, while the EU doesn’t have

any say over the shape of bananas in Britain, there are many aspects of our daily lives that are regulated by unknown officials — irrespective of what nationality or trade bloc we belong to. Elizabeth Hudson is a visual artist whose work uses small details to examine wider social and political situations, combining the serious with the absurd. She was a founding member of curatorial collective VERBureau.

StephanIE Müller & Klaus Eric Dietl (Germany) BE Visual Artists in Residency 2017-2018

Our European artists in residency for 2017-18, Stephanie Müller & Klaus Erich Dietl will collaborate over a 12 month period to produce work especially for BE FESTIVAL. Stephanie is a visual artist and sociological researcher, with an interest in experiments and improvisation. Klaus is a visual artist with a background in literature and cinematography.Stephanie and Klaus will present their first piece PROTECTION SHIELDS TO GO as part of their residency with BE FESTIVAL on Sunday 24 September at Bull Ring Open Markets during Birmingham Weekender. For further information visit:


bE Late Stage


A programme of live music and DJs in a beautiful retro-inspired, pop-up lounge space and open till late every night. Expect a feel good mix of sounds, old and new, from Soul & Funk, Latin & Cumbia, Gypsy Jazz & Swing, Disco & Classics‌ and everything inbetween.

Tue & Wed | 8pm till midnight Thu | 8pm till 1am Fri & Sat | 8pm till 2am

Wed 05 The Brave Sons of Elijah Perry LIVE

(Sat Awards 11pm till midnight)

Band on Stage 10.30pm

*Free entry and open to public

Tue 04

Raw, rambunctious ragtime through a single microphone, with a Mississippi boat-load of energy. Limber up to hoe-down.

The Paper Moons live Band on Stage 10.30pm


The Paper Moons play a cocktail of vintage swing and calypso that guarantees to put a smile on your face and get your toes tapping! Full of joy with a touch of romance. So put your glad rags on for a light hearted foray into a bygone era.

Fri 07

Kiriki Club combines musical flair and a raw, energetic performance style with the dizzy intimacy of a late night lock-in. With total disregard for borders, expect songs in different languages, some reimagined classics, vocal acrobatics, luscious harmonies and dance-floor fillers that pack punch and kick. The club is open!

DJ Glyn Phillips presents Global Soundclash 10pm

Band on Stage 10.30pm

Thu 06 Kiriki Club LIVE

DJ Glyn Phillips (WorldBeatUK, Brum Radio) is back behind the decks with another joyous, floor-filling Global Sound Clash set specially designed for BE FESTIVAL! Expect exuberant afro-latin grooves, soul, Balkan beats, funk, hi-life and more. The music of five continents and a thousand islands!


Sat 08

DJ Doobie Ballantyne

Keeping the dream alive until the fat lady sings, it’s a hyperdrive DJ set referencing musical motifs from the era of Manhattan 1972 and the less salubrious boozers of Solihull 2017. Wham and Grandmaster Flash records will be in attendance. 29

The Hub Bar & Karma Currency

Exchange rate: £1 = K1 Use karma at the bar but not for tickets. Cards incur a £2 charge. It's cheaper to use Karma! Exchange zone for £ / K is situated in The Hub.

If you are ever in need of a pick-me-up through human interaction, alcoholic, caffeine or fruit based beverage then The Hub is your first stop. The heart of the festival, it is where you will find the Bar & Café and the after-hours BE Late Stage which powers into the wee hours every night. Whether you fancy chilling or dancing, there are super comfortable sofas and a dance-floor for all your needs. The Hub Bar runs on BE’s own currency called The Karma where notes are issued in return for cash and card payments. Feeling creative? Draw and design your own content on the reverse of the notes.


Workshops Wed 05 to Sat 08

10.30am to 1.30pm

(Meet in The Hub, 10.15am)

Booking: Email requests to from June 1st with your proof of festival ticket purchase. There may be the opportunity to sign up on the day, subject to availability.The workshops are led by experts in their field – artists and producers – and focus on a range of subjects relevant to performance. Attendance is free to festival ticket holders, participating companies and festival volunteers.

Acrobatic Animal Workshop / Animal Religion Acrobatic Animal Workshop

Playful, creative and physical, the foundation of acrobatics will be studied with the animal kingdom acting as an inspiration for various teachings around movement and awareness. This includes how to develop strength, elasticity and balance. Based in Catalonia, Animal Religion make work that explores the strangeness of our everyday routines often using animals as a reference for their stunts. Recommended: Intermediate level of dance, acrobatics or circus techniques. Over 18s only.

Wed 05

It's All Around You / RL Wilson From the end of your nose to the other end of the globe, inspiration is everywhere to help you create new work. Holistic approaches and new contexts will be explored with participants using image, sound, voice, and text, to develop fresh working methods without even leaving the room. RL Wilson is a multi-disciplinary artist working across moving image, theatre design, sound art, live performance and the written word. Recommended: Bring a pen, sketchbook and a smartphone or tablet.


Thu 06

Fri 07

Let's Dance: A short laboratory for big movement lovers / Marina Santo

Theatre of Manifestation in Ritual Art / John Harrigan

Stimulate your creativity and find freedom using the body from a contemporary perspective. Dance is a place to meet yourself and other human beings. The workshop will feature exercises connected to body awareness and movement research and is open to everybody, professional or not.

Learn about the techniques and combinations of mythology, shamanism, drama therapy and open source collaboration. How does the blurring of 'self' and 'character' provoke powerful experiences for participants and observers of art and performance? Active engagement and participation is vital in both these teachings and this workshop.

This year's BE Next leader, Marina Santo is a Madrid based dancer and teacher interested in different movement research techniques and in the dialogue between contemporary dance and other art forms.

John Harrigan is Artistic Director of FoolishPeople, one of the earliest pioneers of UK immersive theatre who have collaborated with institutions such as the ICA, BBC, Arcola Theatre and Secret Cinema.

How to See: an immersive Guided Walkshop

Recommended: Bring a neck-scarf for some activities.

Don’t expect sight-seeing, heritage highlights or gift shop exoduses. This guided workshop will break down the action of seeing, fine-tuning our visual literacy and instilling participants with an understanding of what it means to be an active citizen, observer, visitor and explorer.

The Producers: Alchemists Impossible / David Micklem

/ Ben Waddington

Ben is the director of Birmingham’s Still Walking Festival, an annual programme of guided tours and walking events which supports new guided walks as a means of exploring the city, beyond the usual heritagefocused tourist experiences. Recommended: Bring suitable shoes for walking. 32



An informal, practical and fun workshop giving participants further information about the UK performing arts scene covering venues, festivals, touring and funding with additional international contexts for contemporary performance. Aimed at artists, practitioners and those with an interest in the UK performing arts scene and international exchange. David Micklem is a theatre producer, arts consultant and writer who previously worked at Arts Council England as a Senior Theatre Officer.

Sat 08

An introduction to site-specific theatre: Consulting the Genius Loci / Andrea Moneta Explore the value of 'found' spaces and the connected approaches, meanings and contexts that go beyond traditional theatre. Participants will be introduced to the methods of ‘Scenarchitecture’, a design practice to link and engage people and places, public art and performance design. Andrea is an architect and a theatre designer currently teaching at Nottingham Trent University. Open to educators and artists of any experience plus architects, theatre designers, choreographers and sociologists. Recommended: Bring comfortable shoes, pen, sketchbook and a smartphone or tablet.


Birmingham is a festival city. From Digbeth arches to world-class concert halls, there’s something for everyone…

Find out about Birmingham’s packed year of festivals at @bhamfestivals





BE Membership & Donations We are not for profit, and rely on generous donations to support our work. If you would like to support the important work we do year round, such as performance workshops for young people who wouldn’t normally be able to attend a youth theatre company, please reach into your pockets! Any donation you’re able to make no matter how small will make a real difference. Arts Council England are currently matching every pound donated by our audiences, so we can double your gift!

Friends of BE For a £50 annual payment you will receive: Quarterly newsletter BE FESTIVAL pin badge Invite to the festival launch event Invite to two BE Next performances per year

Members of of BE BE Members For a £100 annual payment you will receive all of the above benefits plus: Opportunity to visit a rehearsal of BE Next or BE Mix Your name in the programme Opportunity to attend one night of the festival and meet some of the artists over dinner 36

First Access to participate in artist led workshops at the festival

If you’re feeling super generous join our membership scheme and enjoy its BEnefits (such as a fancy pin badge & invitations to exclusive events).

Creative Donors A special scheme where all the money invested goes specifically towards creating new work. For a £250 annual payment you will receive: A twice annual meeting with the festival directors to discuss the development of the work Visit a rehearsal of the work you’ve invested in Opportunity to see the show at the festival and have dinner with artists involved Your name in the programme and in our website

Visit our website for more details: For more details email:


Thanks & Support

SUPPORTERS Produced in association with Birmingham Repertory Theatre and all its team.

Each year we receive invaluable support from many organisations and individuals which we are extremely grateful for. Additionally, many Birmingham residents open their doors to the visiting artists housing them for the course of the festival and we have a pool of volunteers who work round the clock. A huge thank you to all of you.


It is thanks to Arts Council England and the many supportive European embassies and cultural institutes all particularly committed to international work, that we are able to present a celebration of European arts. We would particularly like to mention the generous support of the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany and the Goethe-Institut London who enable us to present a timely focus on contemporary performing arts from Germany this year. With their highly innovative artistic performances and interventions MAMAZA, Paula Rosolen and Anna Aristarkhova critically engage with and question concepts of identity and boundaries whilst putting physical and imaginary borders to a test. This year, the first prize is awarded with the support from The REP and The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, a world-leading conservatoire committed to research that articulates and promotes an inclusive vision of theatre and performance and its place in society. Thanks to a new funding grant from the Jerwood Charitable Foundation we will be able to develop a UK Artists Development Programme in 2017/18. This includes residencies, mentoring and support at different stages of development for artists based in the UK. 38

With support from The Norton Foundation & Baron Davenport’s Charity

A special thanks to our media partners, What’s On Media Group. We are delighted at this new partnership and very grateful for all their support.

Team Directors Isla Aguilar & Miguel Oyarzun General Manager Sadie Newman Producers Porl Cooper, Ruth Harvey, Balisha Karra & Atxarte López de Munain Press & Marketing Catherine Butler & Ballantyne Communications Assistant Producers Jess Barber, Grace Chapman, Alexander Earle & Selina Losa Interns Louise Catry-Bossis, Joy Corcec, Megan Farquhar Production Managers Chris Ball & Alex Boucher Technical Manager Mick Diver Stage Managers Ruth Morgan & Laura Stone Bar Manager Graeme Rose Caterers Marmalade Graphic Designers David Martín de Juan & Pouvelle Studio Web Designer Jack Ratcliffe Film-makers IMS Image Music Sound ( Photographers Alex Brenner & Jonathan Fuller Rowell Printers Clarkeprint Front Cover Image Brooke DiDonato BE FESTIVAL Board Joseph Seelig OBE (Chair), James Cook, Terri Halstead, Jo Lee, Stuart Rogers & Sophia Tarr

BE FESTIVAL is an Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisation.

Venue map - The Rep BE FESTIVAL ENTRANCE The REP - Back entrance (Cambridge St, B1 2EP) THE HUB & BE LATE STAGE







Huge thanks to everyone at The REP and to our passionate team for their hard work and enthusiasm. Thanks to all the artists who come to the festival and to all 1070 who sent us their proposals. And thanks to Alison Gagen, Ian Oaks, The Play House, María Delgado, Gavin Burns, Françoise Gauffier, Laura Killeen, Ian Francis, Clare Lewis, Marie Proffit, Fadhila Mas, Judy Owen, Jon Opie, Sam Skillings, Tim Hodgson, Josephine Reichert, all of the artists mentors and finally to all the volunteers and hosts who are the backbone and spirit of the festival. BE FESTIVAL member: Sarah-Jane Watkinson


BE FESTIVAL 2017 CALENDAR Tue 04 July 7pm

Indomador by Animal Religion

Fri 07 July 10.30am 3pm 7pm


Interval Dinner


Palmyra by Bertrand & Nasi Voutsas Aerobics! - A Ballet in 3 Acts by Paula Rosolen / Haptic Hide


The Paper Moons (LIVE 10.30pm)


8pm | 12am

Wed 05 July 10.30am 3pm 7pm

Acrobatic Animal Workshop with Animal Religion It’s All Around You with RL Wilson Feedback Café & Discussion with MAMAZA & Elizabeth Hudson

The Sensemaker by Woman’s Move Portraits and Short Stories by Panama Pictures


Interval Dinner


Everything is OK by Marco D’Agostin My Country Is What The Sea Doesn’t Want by Casa da Esquina

8pm | 12am

The Brave Sons of Elijah Perry (LIVE 10.30pm)

Thu 06 July 10.30am 3pm 3.30 | 4.20 | 5.10pm 10.30 | 11.20pm 7pm 8.15pm 9.30pm 8pm | 1am

Let's Dance with Marina Santos Guided Walkshop with Ben Waddington Feedback Café & Discussion on borders, chaired by D. Micklem

British Enough? by FoolishPeople (Site-Specific) Légende by Romain Teule

10.30 | 11.20pm 8pm | 2am

Theatre of Manifestation in Ritual Art with J. Harrigan Production Workshop with David Micklem Feedback Café & Discussion with K. Cranfeld & FoolishPeople

40,000 cq by Claudia Catarzi REVOLT ATHENΣ by ODC Ensemble / Vyrsodepseio Interval Dinner

What Does Stuff Do? by Robin Boon Dale Waiting for Schrödinger by Timothy & the Things British Enough? by FoolishPeople (Site-Specific) DJ Glyn Phillips (10pm)

Sat 08 July 10.30am 12pm 1pm 1.30pm 3pm 3.30 | 4.20pm 5.10pm 7pm

An Introduction to Site-Specific Theatre with Andrea Moneta Early Ideas with Lewys Holt, Paul O’Donnell & Lucia Guarino All the Voices by Tante&Tante Networking Lunch Meeting Feedback Café & Discussion with RL Wilson

British Enough? by Foolish People (Site-Specific) BE Next (Youth Theatre curtain call) Homo Furens by Filipe Lourenço / Plan-K Performance Municipal by V. Arlandis & H. Patón


Interval Dinner


Anatomía Pública by Man Drake / Tomeo Vergès

8pm | 2am

DJ Doobie Ballantyne (10pm) & Awards Ceremony (11pm)

Solitudes by Kulunka Teatro Interval Dinner

Betelgez by Ki Omos Kineitai Obnimashki by Anna Aristarkhova Kiriki Club (LIVE 10.30pm)

Sun 09 July 12pm

Workshops (FREE)

Feedback Café

Early Ideas / Site-Specific (Ticketed)

Studio Shows (TICKETED)

Music (FREE)


04-08 JULY - The REP The Soul of Europe in the heart of Birmingham The festival's unique format gives the audience the opportunity to see f...


04-08 JULY - The REP The Soul of Europe in the heart of Birmingham The festival's unique format gives the audience the opportunity to see f...