Inventor on Earth
Anton Podbevšek Theatre
Première: 29 November 2018, Anton Podbevšek Theatre (Dvorana novomeške pomladi)
Running time 1 hour 20 minutes. No interval.
Director and author of concept Bara Kolenc
Dramaturg Miklavž Komelj
Sound designer Matevž Kolenc
Authors of adaptation of the piano compositions by Marija Kogoj (Malenkosti) Matevž Kolenc and Sašo Vollmaier
Set designer Marko Japelj
Choreographer Bara Kolenc and performers
Video designer Zack Sievers
Costume designers Špela Ema Veble and Nina Jagodic
Assistant director Ana Laura Richter
Language consultant Jože Faganel
Visual identity Eva Mlinar
Performers and co-creators
Bara Kolenc, Miklavž Komelj, Andraž Jug, Leja Jurišić, Urban Kuntarič
Performance Inventor on Earth marks the 120th anniversary of the birth of Anton Podbevšek, whose poetry is associated with the beginning of the historical avant-garde movement in Slovenia. By tracing the internal tension of his poetry, the play seeks to stage Podbevšek's "cosmic anarchism", expressing the force of endless expansion of the edge of possibility. If this force in the title song manifests itself in the desire to liberate the potentials that are suppressed by the unjust regulation of human society, the image of a man who is a prisoner of the universe itself is sketched in cosmic space after overstepping the bounds of the horizon. What could give rise to the liberation from this captivity?
The poetry of Anton Podbevšek (1898-1981) opened up new space for the Slovene language of some kind of visionary tongue, to which no one could remain indifferent. The contemporaries, who were initially puzzled over it and over Podbevšek's public appearances in Novo mesto and Ljubljana, and then began to forget all of it as though it were some kind of trauma, often perceived this poetry as an excess of images, which have an impact as a lushness of an exotic primeval forest, where one can lose
oneself. However, a more meticulous reading of his poetry offers the reader a chance to discover, as one of its core features, exceptional precision and consistency in the formation of the smallest semantic units; the poet was able to establish extreme tension and free up maximum energy merely by juxtaposing two words.
Podbevšek was the first person in Slovenia to fill up a theatre hall with his poetry. He understood it as poetry which requires a theatre stage. Inventor on Earth is now bringing this poetry back onto the stage. Podbevšek recited it on the stage in his solitude, and the play Inventor on Earth wants to rekindle his unique poetry with a new stage language while raising awareness that poetry is not just poetry; it is a state of mind.
Dr. Bara Kolenc is a performance artist and a researcher in the field of philosophy.She started her artistic path as a choreographer and gradually developed her theatre language at the intersection of body, speech and space. She is a conceptual artist and thus conceives her projects as multimedia units, interrogating specific topics and their placement into the concrete social environment. She has thus far created 12 evening-length performances, several youth performances and numerous short performances, installations, and videos. In 2018, she authored Metamorphoses 4: Blackholes in Slovensko Mladinsko Theatre and Inventor on Earth in Anton Podbevšek Theatre. Her piece Metamorphoses 3: Retorika (in collaboration with Atej Tutta) was presented at the 53rd Theatertreffen in Berlin. For her work, she has received several awards, most recently the prominent Theatertreffen Stückemarkt Comission of Work 2016.
The Anton Podbevšek Teater (APT) is the youngest professional Slovenian theatre and the first to be established and to operate in the region of Dolenjska and Bela krajina. It is named after Anton Podbevšek, the first Slovenian avant-garde poet and the 'front man' of the artistic movement that gave rise to the first Slovenian artistic avant-garde called the Novo mesto spring. The name suggests an active ontological direction taken by the theatre. Within the theatrical field, this direction is a path and an exploration within the realm of modern art and is focused on the exploration of performance, scenery, movement and sound connected to the reflection of ethics in the field of the criticism of everyday life ideology. The main mission of APT is the development of those production of visual culture that originate from the theatre as forms of thoughts, antagonisms, divisions, alienations that take risks through exploration and stage these risks in different genre codes, in various performing genres that are otherwise left out in the cold by the usual "institutionalism" of the theatrical apparatus including the intermedia discourse and practices. The genre orientation of APT within the network of its own four premier productions is the implementation of the post-dramatic, musical, dancing and children's theatre. Since these are the programmes of modern staging methods, many of the projects are an intertwining of all four elements and intermedia codes.