In his narrative poem Metamorphoses, the Roman poet Ovid transforms people into trees, into stones, birds and flowers – into non-human beings.
In their new park production Ovid’s Dream Theater Anu embark on a poetic and sensory exploration of these metamorphoses, creating a ‘garden of transformations’. Visitors encounter the discarded hulls of the transformed: tongues of flame dart out of shoes; garments are reshaped into lamps; the fabric of clothes is unravelled and spun into new threads, entwined amongst trees, woven into massive cocoons. Visitors are free to wander through this magic place for two and a half hours, witnessing the metamorphoses and listening to the stories.
In nine scenes spread over different locations, dance, shadow-play and light-effects, installations and sound-collages create evocative images and tell familiar and unfamiliar stories, of Narcissus, Orpheus and Eurydice, Pygmalion, Phaeton, as well the Tree of Forgetting, and Rosa, the woman who loved a tree. Seven dancers, from Italy, Spain and Germany, explore the mysteries of the metamorphoses. Their performances, lasting around ten minutes, are performed continually in a loop. The production allows the audience to get right up close to the action and yet can still be enjoyed by several thousand visitors on one night.
Theater Anu’s second large-scale park production following Traces of Light.
Asked if the boy Narcissus would live a long, full life,
the seer and prophet Tiresias said:
as long as he never recognises himself!
Book 3, Narcissus and Echo, Verses 346-350