Metamorphosis of a Mermaid

Live performance.

A live performance about the changing perception of the female creature, half human, half animal, who lures humans down to her underwater kingdom to their doom. The mermaid represents the personification of the romantic and mythological conception of the seductress who with her song attracts and traps men.

The installation is divided into audio and video material and live action, which interact sometimes in and sometimes out of synchrony during the performance. The metamorphosis from a mermaid, Teles, into a fancy lady, Grace, is thus divided into recorded voices (which tell us about their personalities, intentions and susceptibilities), videos (which project their smugness, prosaicness and the transformation of herself), and live action, which demonstrates how one body morphs into another, the space and symbolic code of metamorphosis.

Both female characters interact with the public and leave them with their visiting card with the picture and the attractions of their world and some secret words:

Teles: “Give me inscrutable days, whose meaning has been hidden to us. Give me the time, which has no measure, instruments, which when played leave no musical sound.  Face me with humanity, which has no face. Lose me in the spiral of a labyrinth. Don’t show me life; what lies behind these hours is hidden from view.”

Grace: “I’ve seen you in a deformed body, in drug-contaminated veins, in the phantoms of the parks, in the cadavers, in the remains of humans, in alcoholic liquids, in poisonous fruits. I’ve felt you in the ever slower movement, all days till the immobility.”

‘Metamorphosis of a Mermaid’ was performed within the context of the Seventh Bauhaus stage workshop.


Bewegungen im Park und anderswo

Mitteldeutsche Zeitung

...dieses Laboratorium startet den Versuch, die Vorstellungsräume des Menschen, dessen Gesten und Geschichten, große und kleine Unwägbarkeiten, Eigendynamik und Disharmonien einzubeziehen. Schließlich läuft man auf geraden Wegen schnell in die Anonymität. Vielleicht überreicht deshalb eine junge Dame ohne jede mimische Vorwarnung einen Zettel: “Ich habe dich in den deformierten Körpern gesehen, in den drogenverseuchten Venen, in den Gespenstern des Parks...“Am Ende, bekommt manch Gast, der längst, ein Forscher wurde, eine Blume. Sie ist weiß.

Thomas Altmann, Oktober 2007