Sink Down Mountain, Rise Up Valley
Ulla von Brandenburg
Born in 1974 at Karlsruhe (Allemagne), lives and works in Paris (France).
Medium: Performance, film and video installation
Sink Down Mountain, Rise Up Valley is a commission produced as part of Fondation de France's Nouveaux Commanditaires initiative for the Saint-Simoniens residence in Ménilmontant.
Sink Down Mountain, Rise Up Valley, is Ulla Von Brandenburg's first large-scale theatrical performance. The play for five actors and a chorus is based on events, symbols and dressing rituals linked to Saint-Simonianism (the clothing of the Father, the choreography of gestures, the hierarchy of chants, an elementary lesson in astronomy, the manipulation of objects), handled like so many fragments that distantly recall the memory and values of a movement whose failings as a community and sect are obviously food for thought. Presented on a set streamlined from the floor to the ceiling, the performance is chanted, recalling the forms of transmission used in the community of monks that Prosper Enfantin assembled at his Ménilmontant residence in 1832. Chanting, which necessarily feeds on incantatory codes, is also linked to questions of rhyme and metrics, measure and emphasis, as befits this positivist thought. The new order teeters on it, between the melancholy of a lost utopia and the muted fear still generated today by the birth of radical social movements, despite everything. Through the prism of Saint-Simoniansm, Ulla von Brandenburg’s play will no doubt inspire a reconsideration of today’s whistleblowers or members of Anonymous, people who are themselves steeped in idealistic rituals that belong to a broader political and social history. Commission: Gilles Darcel and Jack Liesveld Mediation and production: Jérôme Poggi and François Quintin Director: Ulla von Brandenburg Music: Joachim Saxenborn, Ulla von Brandenburg Playwright: Benoît Résillot With: Pierre Casadei, Lucienne Deschamps, Duncan Evennou, Giuseppe Molino, Benoît Résillot Costumes: London College of Fashion Production: Objet de production and Lafayette Anticipations Delegated production: Karo Sieben et Sabine Tarry