the exact position of things

premiere 2005 / remake 2019

"If you have a lot, not just one piece, but more of the same, what would you call that?"
"A collection?"
"A collection? No, not exactly".

"When you see so many people on top of each other, how would you call that?"
"A meeting?"
"No, not a meeting."
"A group?"
"Not that either."


(From: Der Tag, der in der Handtasche verschwand, a documentary by Marion Kainz / WDR)

THE PERFORMANCE

She is present, but can no longer focus her thoughts. the exact position of things explores the disorientation of a woman who no longer remembers her own name. She survives by clinging to familiar rituals. The performance explores a constant loss of grip on reality. Words lead a life of their own, the search for meaning is in vain. Actions are repeated and the slightest change exposed.

the exact position of things is a dark performance with no centre, always moving forward into the next moment. Reminiscent of work by Beckett, it is not only existentialist and probing but also liberating. The question Beutler poses: can the loss of all knowledge bring freedom? With subtle humour, she leads the audience into the inner world of a person with Alzheimer’s, where the familiar becomes alien, and the alien appears familiar.

This Nicole Beutler classic from 2005 marks the origin of the distinctive signature of this ‘visual artist in theatre’. The delicate dissection, the ‘looping and scratching’ of images, movement, language and light began with this performance. the exact position of things was nominated for the BNG Theatre Makers’ Award and named by theatre magazine TM as one of the best dance pieces of the season. In celebration of the tenth anniversary of Nicole Beutler Projects, the performance returns to the stage with the original cast.

Press quotes:

“In the excellent ‘The exact position of things’, two female dancers in the half-light skim around disorientation and the loss of reality. Sometimes they shuffle like old ladies fussing about laying an unsightly carpet, sometimes they are transported ecstatically in ‘silly’ dances that hilariously but poignantly underline the mental alienation. A desolate universe in which words lose their meaning and people hold on to solid shapes to save themselves from going under.” Trouw

“The two women in the exact position of thing draw you into a world that is both familiar and alien.” de Volkskrant

Nicole Beutler on the exact position of things:

“Don’t we all hold on to the familiar for fear of the unknown? What are you afraid of? What’s your logic? Art takes its inspiration from the flaws in society. Imperfection is what moves me. Awkwardness, a person’s vulnerability. People with Alzheimer’s in a home are trapped in a space as they are in their own brain. My character never stops asking questions. She’s clinging on and that’s reflected in her body. It leaves a deep impression – sad, but also funny sometimes. Bodies full of stories, that’s what I want to see.”

the book

"The exact position of things" is accompanied by a book of the same title containing photographs by Nicole Beutler and text fragments from various sources. It is a (utopian) attempt to archive, categorise and make sense of a continuously volatile present. The book is handed out to the audience before and after performances of the exact position of things as an independent, but parallel, work. Published by LISA and Spring Festival, Utrecht.

info


Duration: 50 min
Language: English / German with Dutch surtitles

credits

Concept/choreography
Nicole Beutler
Made in collaborations with the performers
Hester van Hasselt, Esther Snelder
Music
Gary Shepherd, Wouter Snoei

Lichtign design
Minna Tiikkainen
Dramaturgy
Robert Steijn, Igor Dobricic
Book design
Connie Nijman
Photography
Nicole Beutler
Drawing
Nicola Unger
Production
Nannete Danckaarts
PR photography
ANJA BEUTLER
Thanks to
Uta Eisenreich, Felix Ritter, Paz Rojo, Yriänä Ranka
Coproducers
LISA, Springdance Festival
Supported by
FAPK (Den Haag), VSB-Fonds
Acquisition & tour planning: Theaterzaken Via Rudolphi

premiere 22 February 2005
▲ previous dates
▼ previous dates
2005
Feb22
the exact position of things
De Brakke Grond De Brakke Grond, Amsterdam (NL)
Premiere (NL)
Feb23
the exact position of things
De Brakke Grond De Brakke Grond, Amsterdam (NL)
Feb24
the exact position of things
De Brakke Grond De Brakke Grond, Amsterdam (NL)
Mar10
the exact position of things
LantarenVenster LantarenVenster, Rotterdam (NL)
Mar11
the exact position of things
LantarenVenster LantarenVenster, Rotterdam (NL)
Mar12
the exact position of things
LantarenVenster LantarenVenster, Rotterdam (NL)
Apr15
the exact position of things
Theater Kikker Theater Kikker, Utrecht (NL)
Apr16
the exact position of things
Theater Kikker Theater Kikker, Utrecht (NL)
2006
Apr20
the exact position of things
Theaterhuset Avant Theaterhuset Avant, Trondheim (NO)
Apr21
the exact position of things
Theaterhuset Avant Theaterhuset Avant, Trondheim (NO)
Apr25
the exact position of things
De Brakke Grond De Brakke Grond, Amsterdam (NL)
Apr26
the exact position of things
De Brakke Grond De Brakke Grond, Amsterdam (NL)
May17
the exact position of things
Tanzquartier Wien Tanzquartier Wien, Vienna (AT)
May18
the exact position of things
Tanzquartier Wien Tanzquartier Wien, Vienna (AT)
Jun03
the exact position of things
Sophiensaele Sophiensaele, Berlijn (DE)
Jun04
the exact position of things
Sophiensaele Sophiensaele, Berlijn (DE)
Jun17
the exact position of things
Festival In-Presentable Festival In-Presentable, Madrid (ES)
2019
Nov13
the exact position of things
Frascati Frascati, Amsterdam (NL)
Nov14
the exact position of things
Frascati Frascati, Amsterdam (NL)
Nov15
the exact position of things
Frascati Frascati, Amsterdam (NL)
Nov16
the exact position of things
Frascati Frascati, Amsterdam (NL)
Nov19
the exact position of things
Corrosia Theater, Expo & Film Corrosia Theater, Expo & Film, Almere (NL)
Nov21
the exact position of things
Toneelschuur Toneelschuur, Haarlem (NL)
Nov27
the exact position of things
Theater Ins Blau Theater Ins Blau, Leiden (NL)
Nov29
the exact position of things
Theater Malpertuis Theater Malpertuis, Tielt (BE)
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Dec02
the exact position of things
Theater aan de Rijn Theater aan de Rijn, Arnhem (NL)
Dec12
the exact position of things
Theater Rotterdam Theater Rotterdam, Rotterdam (NL)
Dec17
the exact position of things
Het Nationale Theater Het Nationale Theater, Den Haag (NL)
Dec20
the exact position of things
Theater Bouwkunde Theater Bouwkunde, Deventer (NL)
2020
Jan07
the exact position of things
Theater Kikker Theater Kikker, Utrecht (NL)
Jan08
the exact position of things
Theater Kikker Theater Kikker, Utrecht (NL)
Jan24
the exact position of things
De Lieve Vrouw De Lieve Vrouw, Amersfoort (NL)
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