Sparsit took a little more tea; and, as she bent her again contracted eyebrows over her steaming cup, rather looked as if her classical countenance were invoking the infernal gods. I am going to take young Tom into my office. Rather young for that, is he not, sir? Bounderby, was a word of ceremony, rather exacting consideration for herself in the use, than honouring him. Here, for example, I have been speaking to you this morning about tumblers.
Why, what do you know about tumblers? At the time when, to have been a tumbler in the mud of the streets, would have been a godsend to me, a prize in the lottery to me, you were at the Italian Opera. A hard bed the pavement of its Arcade used to make, I assure you. Feuermeer, Feuersbrunst, flackern, honouring: ehrung, ehrenbezeigung, scores: Spielergebnisse.
Prunk, Ehre. Anblick, Szene, Schauspiel, Miene, jewels: Juwelen. I should speak of foreign dancers, and the West End of London, and May Fair, and lords and ladies and honourables. I hope I have learnt how to accommodate myself to the changes of life. If I have acquired an interest in hearing of your instructive experiences, and can scarcely hear enough of them, I claim no merit for that, since I believe it is a general sentiment.
But you must confess that you were born in the lap of luxury, yourself. Bounderby was obliged to get up from table, and stand with his back to the fire, looking at her; she was such an enhancement of his position. Sparsit, with an affectation of humility the very opposite of his, and therefore in no danger of jostling it. Sparsit, with a kind of social widowhood upon her. Bounderby, bending himself at the knees, literally embraced his legs in his great satisfaction and laughed aloud.
So Jupe was sent there. On coming in, she curtseyed to Mr. Bounderby, and to his friend Tom Gradgrind, and also to Louisa; but in her. German affectation: Affektiertheit, Vorliebe, Anreicherung, Steigerung. Pracht, Luxusartikel. Trendwende, Kenterung, Umschlag, Gluckern. The name of that lady by the teapot, is Mrs. That lady acts as mistress of this house, and she is a highly connected lady. So far from having high connections I have no connections at all, and I come of the scum of the earth.
But towards that lady, I do care what you do; and you shall do what is deferential and respectful, or you shall not come here. Very likely. Sparsit, shaking her head with her State humility. Gradgrind, who is rather an invalid. I have explained to Miss Louisa - this is Miss Louisa - the miserable but natural end of your late career; and you are to expressly understand that the whole of that subject is past, and is not to be referred to any more. From this time you begin your history. You are, at present, ignorant, I know. Lumpengesindel, Pack, Sippschaft, unentwickelt, unberechtigt, oversights: Versehen.
You will be reclaimed and formed. You have been in the habit now of reading to your father, and those people I found you among, I dare say? Gradgrind, beckoning her nearer to him before he said so, and dropping his voice. At least I mean to father, when Merrylegs was always there. Gradgrind, with a passing frown. I understand you to have been in the habit of reading to your father? They were the happiest - O, of all the happy times we had together, sir! Never breathe a word of such destructive nonsense any more.
Bounderby, this is a case for rigid training, and I shall observe it with interest. But, very well, very well. Since you are bent upon it, very well! Gradgrind and his daughter took Cecilia Jupe off with them to Stone Lodge, and on the way Louisa never spoke one word, good or bad. And Mr. Bounderby went about his daily pursuits. And Mrs. Sparsit got behind her eyebrows and meditated in the gloom of that retreat, all the evening. German beckoning: winkend. Let us strike the key-note again, before pursuing the tune. Never wonder. By means of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division, settle everything somehow, and never wonder.
Now, besides very many babies just able to walk, there happened to be in Coketown a considerable population of babies who had been walking against time towards the infinite world, twenty, thirty, forty, fifty years and more. German affections: Neigungen, Zuneigungen. Still, although they differed in every other particular, conceivable and inconceivable especially inconceivable , they were pretty well united on the point that these unlucky infants were never to wonder. Body number one, said they must take everything on trust. Body number two, said they must take everything on political economy.
Body number three, wrote leaden little books for them, showing how the good grown-up baby invariably got to the Savings-bank, and the bad grown-up baby invariably got transported. Body number four, under dreary pretences of being droll when it was very melancholy indeed , made the shallowest pretences of concealing pitfalls of knowledge, into which it was the duty of these babies to be smuggled and inveigled.
But, all the bodies agreed that they were never to wonder. Gradgrind greatly tormented his mind about what the people read in this library: a point whereon little rivers of tabular statements periodically flowed into the howling ocean of tabular statements, which no diver ever got to any depth in and came up sane. It was a disheartening circumstance, but a melancholy fact, that even these readers persisted in wondering. They wondered about human nature, human passions, human hopes and fears, the struggles, triumphs and defeats, the cares and joys and sorrows, the lives and deaths of common men and women!
They took De Foe to their bosoms, instead of Euclid, and seemed to be on the whole more comforted by Goldsmith than by Cocker. Gradgrind was for ever working, in print and out of print, at this eccentric sum, and he never could make out how it yielded this unaccountable product. His sister sat in the darker corner by the fireside, now looking at him, now looking at the bright sparks as they dropped upon the hearth. I am as obstinate as one, I am more stupid than one, I get as much pleasure as one, and I should like to kick like one. I made an exception of you at first.
Do you really and truly say so? German alliteration: Alliteration, Stabreim. If father was determined to make me either a Prig or a Mule, and I am not a Prig, why, it stands to reason, I must be a Mule. You are the only pleasure I have - you can brighten even this place - and you can always lead me as you like. Though I do know better, Tom, and am very sorry for it. Bounderby thinks as father thinks, and is a great deal rougher, and not half so kind. I shall very well know how to manage and smooth old Bounderby! Or, a fanciful imagination - if such treason could have been there - might have made it out to be the shadow of their subject, and of its lowering association with their future.
Schwarzpulver, Knallpulver. Herunterlassen, drohend, Schattenrisse, Schemen. Is it a secret? She always used to tell me she was sure you would be easier with me than this. I am looking at the fire. But I must go, you know, whether I like it or not; and I had better go where I can take with me some advantage of your influence, than where I should lose it altogether.
What do you see in it? Not a circus? But since I have been looking at it, I have been wondering about you and me, grown up. And, Thomas, it is really shameful, with my poor head continually wearing me out, that a boy brought up as you have been, and whose education has cost what yours has, should be found encouraging his sister to wonder, when he knows his father has expressly said that she is not to do it. It made me think, after all, how short my life would be, and how little I could hope to do in it. Gradgrind, rendered almost energetic.
After all the trouble that has been taken with you! After the lectures you have attended, and the experiments you have seen! After I have heard you myself, when the whole of my right side has been benumbed, going on with your master about combustion, and calcination, and calorification, and I may say every kind of ation that could drive a poor invalid distracted, to hear you talking in this absurd way about sparks and ashes! Gradgrind, taking. German absurd: absurd, widersinnig, combustion: Verbrennung. Rohteil, Zuschnitt, Vordruck. German discharging: Ausladen, Entladung, absetzend, ausladend, Abladen.
Gradgrind, and was not without strong impulses, in the first months of her probation, to run away. It hailed facts all day long so very hard, and life in general was opened to her as such a closely ruled ciphering-book, that assuredly she would have run away, but for only one restraint. It is lamentable to think of; but this restraint was the result of no arithmetical process, was self-imposed in defiance of all calculation, and went dead against any table of probabilities that any Actuary would have drawn up from the premises.
The girl believed that her father had not deserted her; she lived in the hope that he would come back, and in the faith that he would be made the happier by her remaining where she was. The wretched ignorance with which Jupe clung to this consolation, rejecting the superior comfort of knowing, on a sound arithmetical basis, that her father was an unnatural vagabond, filled Mr.
Gradgrind with pity. Yet, what was to be done? German arithmetical: arithmetisch, globe: Globus, Kugel, Erdkugel, Resozialisierung, Probezeit, rechnerisch. All that is difficult to me now, would be so easy then. Schwanken, Schwankung, pleasanter: angenehmer. Unentschlossenheit, Bedenken, prohibition: Verbot, Sperrung, unto: zu. Louisa, with a brighter laugh than usual, told her she would be wiser by- and-by.
All through school hours I make mistakes. They seem to come natural to me. And he said, Now, this schoolroom is a Nation. And in this nation, there are fifty millions of money. But that had nothing to do with it. Then Mr. And he said, This schoolroom is an immense town, and in it there are a million of inhabitants, and only five-and-twenty are starved to death in the streets, in the course of a year.
What is your remark on that proportion? German brighter: heller. And that was wrong, too. And I find Mr. What is the percentage? Anspornung, Aufmunterung. She died when I was born. As dearly as he loves me. Father loved me, first, for her sake. He carried me about with him when I was quite a baby. We have never been asunder from that time. Nobody understands him as I do; nobody knows him as I do. When he left me for my good - he never would have left me for his own - I know he was almost broken-hearted with the trial.
He will not be happy for a single minute, till he comes back. Where did you live? Sometimes they played tricks upon him; but they never knew how he felt them, and shrunk up, when he was alone with me. He was far, far timider than they thought! It was because he grew so scared and trembling, and because he felt himself to be a poor, weak, ignorant, helpless man those used to be his words , that he wanted me so much to know a great deal, and be different from him.
I used to. German astray: verloren, verirren, fehlgehen. Kreatur, Gebilde, Erzeugnis. They kept him, many times, from what did him real harm. And often and often of a night, he used to forget all his troubles in wondering whether the Sultan would let the lady go on with the story, or would have her head cut off before it was finished. To the last? He was angry only one night, and that was not to me, but Merrylegs. He cried out that the very dog knew he was failing, and had no compassion on him. O Heaven forgive you, father, stop! Now that I have asked you so much, tell me the end.
The blame, if there is any blame, is mine, not yours. Freudenschrei, zujauchzen. Erbarmen, Anteilnahme. And he sat rocking himself over the fire, as if he was in pain. I said all the affectionate things to him that came into my heart, and presently he was quiet and I sat down by him, and told him all about the school and everything that had been said and done there. When I had no more left to tell, he put his arms round my neck, and kissed me a great many times. Then he asked me to fetch some of the stuff he used, for the little hurt he had had, and to get it at the best place, which was at the other end of town from there; and then, after kissing me again, he let me go.
When I had gone down-stairs, I turned back that I might be a little bit more company to him yet, and looked in at the door, and said,.
Frische, Frischheit, Frostigkeit, eintragen, heranbringen. Wohlwollen, Zufriedenheit. Then the thought must have come upon him, poor, poor father! Look sharp for old Bounderby, Loo! I keep the nine oils ready for him, and I know he will come back. Every letter that I see in Mr. Sleary about father.
Sleary promised to write as soon as ever father should be heard of, and I trust to him to keep his word. And when Mr. Gradgrind usually improved these occasions by remarking, when she was gone, that if Jupe had been properly trained from an early age she would have remonstrated to herself on sound principles the baselessness of these fantastic hopes. Yet it did seem though not to him, for he saw nothing of it as if fantastic hope could take as strong a hold as Fact. This observation must be limited exclusively to his daughter.
As to Tom, he was becoming that not unprecedented triumph of calculation which is usually at work on number one. As to Mrs. Gradgrind, if she said anything on the subject, she would come a little way out of her wrappers, like a feminine dormouse, and say:. German answered: geantwortet. Sieg, siegen. Upon my word and honour I seem to be fated, and destined, and ordained, to live in the midst of things that I am never to hear the last of.
It really is a most extraordinary circumstance that it appears as if I never was to hear the last of anything! German appears: erscheint, tritt auf. I acknowledge to this ridiculous idiosyncrasy, as a reason why I would give them a little more play. Herumtrampeln, Getrampel. Stephen looked older, but he had had a hard life.
He had known, to use his words, a peck of trouble. He was usually called Old Stephen, in a kind of rough homage to the fact. Yet he was not. He held no station among the Hands who could make speeches and carry on debates. Thousands of his compeers could talk much better than he, at any time. He was a good power-loom weaver, and a man of perfect integrity. What more he was, or what else he had in him, if anything, let him show for himself. The lights in the great factories, which looked, when they were illuminated, like Fairy palaces - or the travellers by express- train said so - were all extinguished; and the bells had rung for knocking off for the night, and had ceased again; and the Hands, men and women, boy and girl, were clattering home.
Old Stephen was standing in the street, with the old sensation upon him which the stoppage of the machinery always produced - the sensation of its having worked and stopped in his own head. It was a wet night, and many groups of young women passed him, with their shawls drawn over their bare heads and held close under their chins to keep the rain out. He knew Rachael well, for a glance at any one of these groups was sufficient to show him that she was not there. German bells: Klingeln, Schellen. Sinn, Aufsehen. But, he had not gone the length of three streets, when he saw another of the shawled figures in advance of him, at which he looked so keenly that perhaps its mere shadow indistinctly reflected on the wet pavement - if he could have seen it without the figure itself moving along from lamp to lamp, brightening and fading as it went - would have been enough to tell him who was there.
It was not a face in its first bloom; she was a woman five and thirty years of age. The expression was not lost upon her; she laid her hand lightly on his arm a moment as if to thank him for it. German brightening: aufhellend. Ausbleichen, Fading, Schwundeffekt. Rauchkappe, Motorhaube. Thou hast been that to me, Rachael, through so many year: thou hast done me so much good, and heartened of me in that cheering way, that thy word is a law to me. Ah, lass, and a bright good law! Better than some real ones. Let everything be. Let all sorts alone. The touch had its instantaneous effect.
I come to the muddle many times and agen, and I never get beyond it. It was in one of the many small streets for which the favourite undertaker who turned a handsome sum out of the one poor ghastly pomp of the neighbourhood kept a black ladder, in order that those who had done their daily groping up and down the narrow stairs might slide out of this working world by the windows. She stopped at the corner, and putting her hand in his, wished him good night. German agen: Alt. Feudenruf, Freude, Freudenfest, heartened: ermutigt, ermutigtet, thoughtfulness: Vorsorge, Freudentaumel, Freundlichkeit.
But, they were broken now, and the rain had ceased, and the moon shone, - looking down the high chimneys of Coketown on the deep furnaces below, and casting Titanic shadows of the steam-engines at rest, upon the walls where they were lodged. The man seemed to have brightened with the night, as he went on. His home, in such another street as the first, saving that it was narrower, was over a little shop. How it came to pass that any people found it worth their while to sell or buy the wretched little toys, mixed up in its window with cheap newspapers and pork there was a leg to be raffled for to-morrow-night , matters not here.
He took his end of candle from a shelf, lighted it at another end of candle on the counter, without disturbing the mistress of the shop who was asleep in her little room, and went upstairs into his lodging. It was a room, not unacquainted with the black ladder under various tenants; but as neat, at present, as such a room could be.
A few books and writings were on an old bureau in a corner, the furniture was decent and sufficient, and, though the atmosphere was tainted, the room was clean. Going to the hearth to set the candle down upon a round three- legged table standing there, he stumbled against something. As he recoiled, looking down at it, it raised itself up into the form of a woman in a sitting attitude.
A disabled, drunken creature, barely able to preserve her sitting posture by steadying herself with one begrimed hand on the floor, while. German begrimed: beschmutzte. A creature so foul to look at, in her tatters, stains and splashes, but so much fouler than that in her moral infamy, that it was a shameful thing even to see her. Then she sat swaying her body to and fro, and making gestures with her unnerved arm, which seemed intended as the accompaniment to a fit of laughter, though her face was stolid and drowsy. And back agen. Back agen ever and ever so often.
Yes, back. Why not? She threw herself upon the bed heavily, and soon was snoring hard. He sunk into a chair, and moved but once all that night. It was to throw a covering over her; as if his hands were not enough to hide her, even in the darkness. German accompaniment: Begleitung, Geleit. Stephen bent over his loom, quiet, watchful, and steady. A special contrast, as every man was in the forest of looms where Stephen worked, to the crashing, smashing, tearing piece of mechanism at which he laboured.
Never fear, good people of an anxious turn of mind, that Art will consign Nature to oblivion. Set anywhere, side by side, the work of god and the work of man; and the former, even though it be a troop of Hands of very small account, will gain in dignity from the comparison. So many hundred Hands in this Mill; so many hundred horse Steam Power. It is known, to the force of a single pound weight, what the engine will do; but, not all the calculators of the National Debt can tell me the capacity for good or evil, for love or hatred, for patriotism or discontent, for the decomposition of virtue into vice, or the reverse, at any single moment in the soul of one of these.
German calculators: Rechner. Gleichartigkeit, Einerlei, watchful: wachsam. There is no mystery in it; there is an unfathomable mystery in the meanest of them, for ever. The day grew strong, and showed itself outside, even against the flaming lights within. The lights were turned out, and the work went on. The rain fell, and the Smoke-serpents, submissive to the curse of all that tribe, trailed themselves upon the earth. In the waste-yard outside, the steam from the escape pipe, the litter of barrels and old iron, the shining heaps of coals, the ashes everywhere, were shrouded in a veil of mist and rain.
More clattering upon the pavements. The looms, and wheels, and Hands all out of gear for an hour. Stephen came out of the hot mill into the damp wind and cold wet streets, haggard and worn. He turned from his own class and his own quarter, taking nothing but a little bread as he walked along, towards the hill on which his principal employer lived, in a red house with black outside shutters, green inside blinds, a black street door, up two white steps, BOUNDERBY in letters very like himself upon a brazen plate, and a round brazen door-handle underneath it, like a brazen full-stop.
Bounderby was at his lunch. So Stephen had expected. Would his servant say that one of the Hands begged leave to speak to him? Message in return, requiring name of such Hand. Stephen Blackpool. There was nothing troublesome against Stephen Blackpool; yes, he might come in. Stephen Blackpool in the parlour. Bounderby whom he just knew by sight , at lunch on chop and sherry. Sparsit netting at the fireside, in a side- saddle attitude, with one foot in a cotton stirrup. It was a part, at once of Mrs. She supervised the meal officially, but implied that in her own stately person she considered lunch a weakness.
Stephen made a bow. Not a servile one - these Hands will never do that! Sparsit, tucked his neckerchief ends into his waistcoat. Now, you know, I am certain of that, beforehand. Bounderby seemed agreeably surprised, notwithstanding his previous strong conviction. What have you got to say? Out with it, lad! Bounderby stayed her, by holding a mouthful of chop in suspension before swallowing it, and putting out his left hand.
If what you have got to say can be said before a born lady, this lady will stay where she is. German agreeably: angenehm. Bounderby, pushing away his plate, and leaning back. She went bad - soon. Not along of me. Gonnows I were not a unkind husband to her.
Bounderby, in confidence to his wine- glass. She left me. She disgraced herseln everyways, bitter and bad. She coom back, she coom back, she coom back. Please to turn your humble eye in My direction. Last night, I went home. There she lay upon my har-stone! There she is! In the strength of his misfortune, and the energy of his distress, he fired for the moment like a proud man. In another moment, he stood as he had stood all the time - his usual stoop upon him; his pondering face addressed to Mr. Bounderby, with a curious expression on it, half shrewd, half perplexed, as if his mind were set upon unravelling something very difficult; his hat held tight in his left hand, which rested on his hip; his right arm, with a rugged propriety and force of action, very earnestly emphasizing what he said: not least so when it always paused, a little bent, but not withdrawn, as he paused.
You had better have been satisfied as you were, and not have got married. Was it an unequal marriage in point of years, this unlucky job of yours? I were one-and-twenty myseln; she were twenty nighbut. Sparsit to her Chief, with great placidity. Bounderby looked very hard at the good lady in a side-long way that had an odd sheepishness about it. He fortified himself with a little more sherry. Sparsit uttered a gentle ejaculation, as having received a moral shock. You took her for better for worse. German attentive: aufmerksam, achtsam, folgertest, folgerte, folgertet. Sparsit in an undertone, and much dejected by the immorality of the people.
German battering: Zerschlagend. Not that way. Bounderby, putting his hands in his pockets. It costs money. It costs a mint of money. Sparsit again dejected by the impiety of the people. German brings: bringt, bringt mit, bringt ein, motioning: winkend. Schicksalsverbundenheit, Hinsicht. The institutions of your country are not your piece- work, and the only thing you have got to do, is, to mind your piece-work.
If she has turned out worse - why, all we have got to say is, she might have turned out better. Bounderby resumed, as a valedictory address. I see traces of the turtle soup, and venison, and gold spoon in this. Yes, I do! Bounderby, shaking his head with obstinate cunning. Bounderby swelling at his own portrait on the wall, as if he were going to explode himself into it; and Mrs. Sparsit still ambling on with her foot in her stirrup, looking quite cast down by the popular vices.
Arglist, arglistig. Liedchen, adaptieren. He crossed the street with his eyes bent upon the ground, and thus was walking sorrowfully away, when he felt a touch upon his arm. It was an old woman, tall and shapely still, though withered by time, on whom his eyes fell when he stopped and turned.
She was very cleanly and plainly dressed, had country mud upon her shoes, and was newly come from a journey. The flutter of her manner, in the unwonted noise of the streets; the spare shawl, carried unfolded on her arm; the heavy umbrella, and little basket; the loose long-fingered gloves, to which her hands were unused; all bespoke an old woman from the country, in her plain holiday clothes, come into Coketown on an expedition of rare occurrence.
Remarking this at a glance, with the quick observation of his class, Stephen Blackpool bent his attentive face - his face,. German abate: verringern, verringre, newly: neuerdings, neu, neulich. Muffe, Muff. Was he portly, bold, outspoken, and hearty? Yet there was a vague remembrance in his mind, as if he had more than once dreamed of some old woman like her. She walked along at his side, and, gently accommodating himself to her humour, he said Coketown was a busy place, was it not? Dreadful busy! To which she answered in the affirmative.
I walked nine. I come regular, to tramp about the streets, and see the gentlemen. You came out instead. Now, if I am obliged to go back without a glimpse of him - I only want a glimpse - well! I have seen you, and you have seen him, and I must make that do. With a large allowance for difference of tastes, and with all submission to the patricians of Coketown, this seemed so extraordinary a source of interest to take so much trouble about, that it perplexed him.
But they were passing the church now, and as his eye caught the clock, he quickened his pace. He was going to his work? Yes, time was nearly out. On his telling her where he worked, the old woman became a more singular old woman than before. He knew that there was trouble enough in the world; and if the old woman had lived so long, and could count upon his having so little, why so much the better for her, and none the worse for him.
Erlaubnis, Zuweisung, fest, setzt fest.
germansynonyms/kejycerubolo.tk at master · PSeitz/germansynonyms · GitHub
You have your troubles at home, you mean? All correct there. Everything accordant there. He did not go so far as to say, for her pleasure, that there was a sort of Divine Right there; but, I have heard claims almost as magnificent of late years. They were now in the black by-road near the place, and the Hands were crowding in. The bell was ringing, and the Serpent was a Serpent of many coils, and the Elephant was getting ready. The strange old woman was delighted with the very bell. It was the beautifullest bell she had ever heard, she said, and sounded grand!
She asked him, when he stopped good-naturedly to shake hands with her before going in, how long he had worked there? What harmony, besides her age and her simplicity, surrounded her, he did not know, but even in this fantastic action there was a something neither out of time nor place: a something which it seemed as if nobody else could have made as serious, or done with such a natural and touching air. He had been at his loom full half an hour, thinking about this old woman, when, having occasion to move round the loom for its adjustment, he glanced through a window which was in his corner, and saw her still looking up at the pile of building, lost in admiration.
Heedless of the smoke and mud and wet, and of her two long journeys, she was gazing at it, as if the heavy thrum that issued from its many stories were proud music to her. Justierung, Abgleich, munter, begeistert. Harmonie, Wohlklang. Long before then his thoughts had gone back to the dreary room above the little shop, and to the shameful figure heavy on the bed, but heavier on his heart. The bell again; the glare of light and heat dispelled; the factories, looming heavy in the black wet night - their tall chimneys rising up into the air like competing Towers of Babel.
He waited, but she had eluded him. She was gone. On no other night in the year could he so ill have spared her patient face. Better to have no home in which to lay his head, than to have a home and dread to go to it, through such a cause. He ate and drank, for he was exhausted - but he little knew or cared what; and he wandered about in the chill rain, thinking and thinking, and brooding and brooding. No word of a new marriage had ever passed between them; but Rachael had taken great pity on him years ago, and to her alone he had opened his closed heart all this time, on the subject of his miseries; and he knew very well that if he were free to ask her, she would take him.
He thought of the home he might at that moment have been seeking with pleasure and pride; of the different man he might have been that night; of the lightness then in his now heavy- laden breast; of the then restored honour, self-respect, and tranquillity all torn to pieces. He thought of the waste of the best part of his life, of the change it made in his character for the worse every day, of the dreadful nature of his existence, bound hand and foot, to a dead woman, and tormented by a demon in her shape.
He thought of Rachael, how young when they were first brought together in these circumstances, how mature now, how soon to grow old. He thought of the number of girls and women she had seen marry, how many homes with children. He set the picture of her up, beside the infamous image of last night; and thought, Could it be, that the whole earthly course of one so gentle, good, and self- denying, was subjugate to such a wretch as that!
Filled with these thoughts - so filled that he had an unwholesome sense of growing larger, of being placed in some new and diseased relation towards the objects among which he passed, of seeing the iris round every misty light turn red - he went home for shelter. Abstufung, beschatten, Ton, contentedly: zufrieden.
Schwermut, Ratlosigkeit, lone: einsam, einzeln, einzig. The inequality of Birth was nothing to it. For, say that the child of a King and the child of a Weaver were born to-night in the same moment, what was that disparity, to the death of any human creature who was serviceable to, or beloved by, another, while this abandoned woman lived on! From the outside of his home he gloomily passed to the inside, with suspended breath and with a slow footstep.
He went up to his door, opened it, and so into the room. Quiet and peace were there. Rachael was there, sitting by the bed. She turned her head, and the light of her face shone in upon the midnight of his mind. She sat by the bed, watching and tending his wife. Herzchen, allerliebst, auserkoren, faintly: schwach. Laufmaschen bekommen. Everything was in its place and order as he had always kept it, the little fire was newly trimmed, and the hearth was freshly swept. While looking at it, it was shut out from his view by the softened tears that filled his eyes; but not before he had seen how earnestly she looked at him, and how her own eyes were filled too.
You are very late. The rain falls very heavy, and the wind has risen. It was blowing hard. Hark to the thundering in the chimney, and the surging noise! To have been out in such a wind, and not to have known it was blowing! Landlady came round for me at dinner-time. There was some one here that needed looking to, she said. All wandering and lost, Stephen. Wounded too, and bruised. Geblas, Gepus.
Hauswirtin, Zimmervermieterin. Thou art not the man to cast the last stone, Stephen, when she is brought so low. She dressed them now, still without showing her. She steeped a piece of linen in a basin, into which she poured some liquid from a bottle, and laid it with a gentle hand upon the sore. The three-legged table had been drawn close to the bedside, and on it there were two bottles.
This was one. He turned of a deadly hue, and a sudden horror seemed to fall upon him. I can wake many nights, when I am put to it. Try to sleep in the chair there, while I watch. Thou hadst no sleep last night, I can well believe. She had cast it out; she would keep it out; he trusted to her to defend him from himself. When she comes to her right mind once more, I shall have done what I can, and she never the wiser. Nuance, Farbe, Abstufung. She thought he was chilled with the wet. He had had a fright. When I were walking. When I were thinking. Let me see thee setten by the bed. Let me see thee as I see thee when I coom in.
I can never see thee better than so. Never, never, never! After a time he controlled himself, and, resting with an elbow on one knee, and his head upon that hand, could look towards Rachael. Seen across the dim candle with his moistened eyes, she looked as if she had a glory shining round her head. He could have believed she had.
He did believe it, as the noise without shook the window, rattled at the door below, and went about the house clamouring and lamenting. Anyways we will hope so now. And now I shall keep silence, for I want thee to sleep. Even this imperfect consciousness faded away at last, and he dreamed a long, troubled dream.
German clamouring: Schreiend. While the ceremony was performing, and while he recognized among the witnesses some whom he knew to be living, and many whom he knew to be dead, darkness came on, succeeded by the shining of a tremendous light. It broke from one line in the table of commandments at the altar, and illuminated the building with the words. They were sounded through the church, too, as if there were voices in the fiery letters. Upon this, the whole appearance before him and around him changed, and nothing was left as it had been, but himself and the clergyman.
They stood in the daylight before a crowd so vast, that if all the people in the world could have been brought together into one space, they could not have looked, he thought, more numerous; and they all abhorred him, and there was not one pitying or friendly eye among the millions that were fastened on his face. He stood on a raised stage, under his own loom; and, looking up at the shape the loom took, and hearing the burial service distinctly read, he knew that he was there to suffer death.
In an instant what he stood on fell below him, and he was gone. Wandering to and fro, unceasingly, without hope, and in search of he knew not what he only knew that he was doomed to seek it , he was the subject of a nameless, horrible dread, a mortal fear of one particular shape which everything took.
Whatsoever he looked at, grew into that form sooner or later. The object of his miserable existence was to prevent its recognition by any one among the various people he encountered. Hopeless labour! If he led them out of rooms where it was, if he shut up drawers and closets where it stood, if he drew the curious from places where he knew it to be secreted, and got them out into the streets, the very chimneys of the mills assumed that shape, and round them was the printed word. German abhorred: verabscheutet, doomed: Verloren, verdammt, desperat. Gottesdienstes, Priester, befestigte, befestigt, befestigtet.
The wind was blowing again, the rain was beating on the house-tops, and the larger spaces through which he had strayed contracted to the four walls of his room. Saving that the fire had died out, it was as his eyes had closed upon it. Rachael seemed to have fallen into a doze, in the chair by the bed. She sat wrapped in her shawl, perfectly still.
The table stood in the same place, close by the bedside, and on it, in its real proportions and appearance, was the shape so often repeated. He looked again, and he was sure it moved. He saw a hand come forth and grope about a little. Then the curtain moved more perceptibly, and the woman in the bed put it back, and sat up. With her woful eyes, so haggard and wild, so heavy and large, she looked all round the room, and passed the corner where he slept in his chair.
Her eyes returned to that corner, and she put her hand over them as a shade, while she looked into it. Again they went all round the room, scarcely heeding Rachael if at all, and returned to that corner. He thought, as she once more shaded them - not so much looking at him, as looking for him with a brutish instinct that he was there - that no single trace was left in those debauched features, or in the mind that went along with them, of the woman he had married eighteen years before.
But that he had seen her come to this by inches, he never could have believed her to be the same. All this time, as if a spell were on him, he was motionless and powerless, except to watch her. Stupidly dozing, or communing with her incapable self about nothing, she sat for a little while with her hands at her ears, and her head resting on them. Presently, she resumed her staring round the room. And now, for the first time, her eyes stopped at the table with the bottles on it.
Straightway she turned her eyes back to his corner, with the defiance of last night, and moving very cautiously and softly, stretched out her greedy hand. She drew a mug into the bed, and sat for a while considering which of the two bottles she should choose. Finally, she laid her insensate grasp upon the bottle. German beating: Schlagen, Klopfen. If this be real, and her allotted time be not yet come, wake, Rachael, wake!
She thought of that, too. She looked at Rachael, and very slowly, very cautiously, poured out the contents. The draught was at her lips. A moment and she would be past all help, let the whole world wake and come about her with its utmost power. But in that moment Rachael started up with a suppressed cry. The creature struggled, struck her, seized her by the hair; but Rachael had the cup. Stephen broke out of his chair. I have been asleep, myself. I hear the bells. They listened, and it struck three. Stephen looked at her, saw how pale she was, noted the disorder of her hair, and the red marks of fingers on her forehead, and felt assured that his senses of sight and hearing had been awake.
She held the cup in her hand even now. She had nothing to do, then, but to cover herself with her shawl before going out into the wind and rain. Bless thee, bless thee! Angels are not like me. My little sister is among them, but she is changed. I told thee I had had a fright. It were the Poison-bottle on table. Evermore I will see thee there. Abgrund, Tiefe, Haff. He kissed the border of her shawl again, and let her go. She bade him good night in a broken voice, and went out into the street. It had cleared the sky before it, and the rain had spent itself or travelled elsewhere, and the stars were bright.
He stood bare-headed in the road, watching her quick disappearance. As the shining stars were to the heavy candle in the window, so was Rachael, in the rugged fancy of this man, to the common experiences of his life. German bade: geboten. But, less inexorable than iron, steal, and brass, it brought its varying seasons even into that wilderness of smoke and brick, and made the only stand that ever was made in the place against its direful uniformity.
German brass: Messing, Latun, Rotguss. You have not acquired, under Mr. You are extremely deficient in your facts. Your acquaintance with figures is very limited. You are altogether backward, and below the mark. Yet I have tried hard, sir. Gradgrind, shaking his head in his profoundest and most eminently practical way. The course you pursued, you pursued according to the system - the system - and there is no more to be said about it. I can only suppose that the circumstances of your early life were too unfavourable to the development of your reasoning powers, and that we began too late.
Still, as I have said already, I am disappointed. Denken, Gedankengang. You are an affectionate, earnest, good young woman - and - and we must make that do. Gradgrind, and in a generally pervading way you are serviceable in the family also; so I understand from Miss Louisa, and, indeed, so I have observed myself.
I have heard from Miss Louisa that you still preserve that bottle. If your training in the science of arriving at exact results had been more successful, you would have been wiser on these points. I will say no more. Somehow or other, he had become possessed by an idea that there was something in this girl which could hardly be set forth in a tabular form.
Her capacity of definition might be easily stated at a very low figure, her mathematical knowledge at nothing; yet he was not sure that if he had been required, for example, to tick her off into columns in a parliamentary return, he would have quite known how to divide her. In some stages of his manufacture of the human fabric, the processes of Time are very rapid. Young Thomas and Sissy being both at such a stage of their working up, these changes were effected in a year or two; while Mr. Gradgrind himself seemed stationary in his course, and underwent no alteration. Except one, which was apart from his necessary progress through the mill.
Time hustled him into a little noisy and rather dirty machinery, in a by-comer, and made him Member of Parliament for Coketown: one of the respected members for ounce weights and measures, one of the representatives of the multiplication table, one of the deaf honourable gentlemen, dumb honourable. In the first half of the building, there is barely a metre between them. Further on, they are used to create a semi-circular seating tribune. At the entrance, sounds emanate from a tractor tyre that spins aimlessly round on chains.
In another spot, there is an embellished TV screen, filled with trinkets. And so it goes on, seemingly without end. It transcends immediate comprehension. Between those racks, the performers, complemented by Meg Stuart herself, seek contact with the people via gestures and touches. Many participate in this opening rite. Only afterwards do the performers develop their own rituals. For what other word can be used to describe the strange gestures they make, and which invariably hover between tics, secret signs and a group dance?
Many of the subsequent scenes seem to share mutual relationships, but these frequently overlap and are also supplemented by the voices of the performers, who talk about their experiences. It is impossible to follow everything at once. It is overwhelming. The only certainty is that the performers not only dream, but that their dreams become ever more indulgent. For example, Jorge De Hoyos, running as fast as he can, tries to take-off with a parachute.
Mor Demer, who is naked, suddenly darts between the viewers. Sigal Zouk and Renan Martins, who dance almost continuously, provide the piece with a baseline. And Mariana Tengner is, to all extents and purposes, the master of ceremonies. Meanwhile, the double bass and electronic sounds of Klaus Janek and Vincent Malstaf reverberate throughout the proceedings. What this means, if anything at all, is not the point any longer. Projecting [Space [ is a quest for what might happen when people come together for one reason, and one reason only: the experience itself.
But no one in Dinslaken could resist the enchantment of the giant campfire at the end. This temporary construction, destined only to consume itself, was the perfect symbol for this work: an intense experience that disappears with the visitors who gave it form. During the month of August the dance company Damaged Goods works on loca-tion in the Zentralwerkstatt Lohberg in Dinslaken, transforming it into a temporary environment for imagining and experimenting with collective practices of meeting and making. They address various transformations of energy, ecstatic encounters and care for the unfamiliar — all of it through a gamut of materials that were gathered to feed the smouldering bonfire that is a rehearsal process.
And as the fire burns the construction grows invisible and smaller, and then the circle of people around it becomes smaller too, until everyone sits down and eats marshmallows together. One wall of the studio is covered with images collected by all the collaborators. An arrangement of blue and red-brown images shows a body lying flat on an asphalt road, next to a huge land-scape grazed bare by bulldozers; and below that an underground parking lot that leads to a fantastic grotto with a shimmering light at the end.
More worlds can be imagined underneath, perhaps reaching 1. Once the coal excavated and burned in the Ruhr area spurred on a whole industry and culture of workers and production, while society and cultural patterns are now defined by different energy sources as fossil fuels are quickly running out. If particular energy sources have a profound impact on the cul-tural production of a certain era, then what will the future look like? Our discussion quickly moved away from wood and coal to what drives bodies dancing, sensing, witnessing. What would it be like to harvest a crystal?
Imagine the almost endless amount of time and pressure required to arrive at such a precise shape and substance. Or imagine the yet unborn fossils, minerals and crystals that carry traces of our time into a distant future. Pushed to the side of the studio wall, there are some photos of dis-used industrial buildings, abandoned amusement parks and shopping malls, or derelict world fair pavilions and Olympic sports stadiums.
Modern ruins devoid of human presence. What do the glossy photos of these imploded dreams tell us? Do we perhaps need different images to practice alternative ways of looking at what produced these ruins? The many disused coal and steel factories in the Ruhr area are in a sense giant rehearsal spaces.
Some are in actuality converted into environments used for very different purposes, including the per-forming arts. Along with the interest in industrial archaeology, the reconversion of these factory buildings also provides training spaces in another sense. In the future, there will be new and other disused buil-dings awaiting new purposes. Imagine all those abandoned airports in the not-so-distant-future beyond peak oil — what will we do with them? Turn them into museums of modernity?
Or will they, now hubs for impersonal and swift mobility, in the post-labour society become spots for lingering? Gym spaces for people to keep their atrophied bodies in shape when drones and robots do all the work? Environments for gathering, encounter and ritual? Imagine all the behaviours and lifestyles that could be practiced in such a space. Also theatre buildings fall to ruin, even though the time of decay eludes the attention and imagination of us, theatre visitors. And yet, long before the forest takes over the debris of a derelict theatre, the elements are already fully alive in there.
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How can we attend to events and phenomena that lay beyond the senses? Or he wonders how we can look at a theatre also as an actual stone building. Suddenly, the background shifts to the foreground, non-human agents and different temporalities come into play. Or imagine your highly sensitive body brushing up against the concrete floor of a former mining factory. Would your body become site-specific? Would material and spatial conditions become partners in the conversation, in this encounter of heterogeneous surfaces and desires?
Imagine your attention to the smallest particles being stirred when someone blows a handful of dust across the room. To the right, the photos climb higher up the studio wall. They follow the dynamics of the people in the images constructing spaces with wooden frames, organising things or drawing abstract lines in the air — gestures that defy gravity and entropy.
About a year ago, we found ourselves in a former cement factory, where Jozef Wouters guided a rehearsal around the vocabulary of building. In a delimited space full of stuff — stone, metal, wood — he asked everyone to elevate things. You can order things, put them upright, stack them, or throw them out if needed. Go about it in a practical manner. The next task was to sit somewhere — to look at the environment from within, to inhabit it, perhaps to transform it yet again. How does your body fit in this space? The memory of these improvisations lingers on whilst reading a wonderful essay by Robert Pogue Harrison on the gardens of homeless people in New York City.
The images on the wall are rearranged every day. Together they also enable us to create scenarios and dream about the work in the making, or to explore how people would behave in certain environments. Travelling along and through those photographs, we could identify with the many nomadic figures in them and their extreme journeys. Would we be able to understand their reports about the future state of things? Would we be spurred on to sen-sitize ourselves and experiment with spaces and situations of encounter? Would we be able to push our imagination of the present to the edge of the familiar, approach other worlds and begin to experience and care for the foreign in our midst?
Detached from the undocumented practices of the Sepik, these objects are now only touched with white gloves and remain in limbo. A fishing net; ceremonial head-gear; a bat for playing some kind of game; a cooking implement… Who knows? What should we do with it? Imagine a museum of experience, a time capsule in which practices are kept alive. Perhaps you could partake in the revival of extinct languages and practices of another era. It might be an invitation to tune and hone your sensorium, experiment with ways of feeling and perceiving differently.
Change the scale. Minimize to observe. We develop, as masters, practices of perception, from different stimuli of the senses that we accept as valid and all the others for which we still do not have a name or form. Two more images with bright yellow and red colours have landed side by side in the map. A few years ago, several blast furnaces and containers to transport molten iron from the disused Phoenix West factory in Dortmund were sold and shipped to China. In a distant future they might travel back to the Ruhr area, transformed and embodied in an altogether different shape, their energy now contained in a fire-spitting Chinese dragon, with a large group of people dancing to hold up its cloth canopy high above their heads with sticks as the fabulous beast keeps on snaking and fuming.
Deux heures bien bon. Mais Until our Hearts Stop pourrait durer bien plus encore. Ne jamais finir. C'est le mot. En volumes. En courses. Je donne tout de mon poids pour mieux soutenir celui de mon partenaire. En contre-poids. Voire s'emberlificote. Se multiplie. Et cela implique de plus en plus de partenaires, par agencements passant aux limites.
La conduite de tout cela tangue dans une ivresse de la fragmentation spectaculaire. Tout semblerait pouvoir se produire. Et son contraire. Et quoi d'autre encore. Or c'est toujours, furieusement, du Meg Stuart. Farouchement jubilatoire. In her first evening-length solo, Meg Stuart takes her body to the stage as an archive of memories, both of family life and her artistic career. In Hunter, running from 28 to 30 January at the Teatro Maria Matos, the choreographer and dancer is both the hunter and the prey. There are sure to be a large number of respectable studies from those who propose one thing, to the opposite, or the coexistence of both arguing that anyone who finds themselves alone seeks immediate solace in the radio or television.
There will even be those who argue that radio or television would be enough to remove the solitude from that equation. For the choreographer and dancer whose solos had, until now, only been short exercises in a break between two longer pieces the sort that clean the palate or reset the timer before continuing the journey , Hunter is too populous a piece for any trace of solitude to be felt in the solo. In fact, Hunter is quite the opposite: a body used as an archive of real and fictional memories; a head flooded with voices; a reconstruction of her entire personal cartography for a stage on which, only with great lack of imagination, we will see only Meg Stuart.
Sometimes, these are perfectly audible to the audience, including those of Allen Ginsberg, William Burroughs or an aunt, mixing the family history that she discovered when digging back seven generations as suggested by a shaman with a host of artists that helped to shape her movement.
At other times, those voices are barely discernible and yet capable of suggesting references that are essentially presumed to be to Jonas Mekas, Yoko Ono, Laurie Anderson, Trisha Brown or Miranda July. I felt that while I have the energy and interest to perform, it was a good way to put Damaged Goods [her company] and my creative process into perspective. With Hunter, Meg Stuart is putting herself into the development of her own discourse. She has thought of and defined the body as a repository of memories for a long time, but never before has she taken this belief so literally and to such an extreme.
Looking at her body and her movement as an archive, she decided to amplify and delve into it as far as possible. By moving into the personal domain, the choreographer is identifying a possible response to this previous piece; another form of digging down to try and see herself more clearly. In investigating her own choreographic language and what makes it flesh, Meg Stuart accepts the idea of transformation and uncertainty about her present. Hunter therefore dispenses with the need to establish an order that others can share and work with; it does not appear concerned with defining a collective environment.
It is a piece with many layers to it: an explosion of narratives. In fact, Meg Stuart is amused by the idea that Hunter could seem like an excessive narcissistic obsession, simply because around her — somewhat as strange as it is cosy — there are always several ghosts following her every move.
Struggling with the issue of togetherness, Meg Stuart expresses an imperious desire to live and create, showing everything through an exhilarating freedom of tone and movement, which results in a few well-known scenes we are thinking, in particular, of the incredible pair of nudes. This is our pick of this Tanz Im August Meg Stuart began with contact improvisation, but quickly dispensed with its usual taboos — such as violence, or touching in sensitive places. To the looping, sometimes overwhelming jazz strains of Marc Lohr, Stefan Rusconi and Samuel Halscheidt, the six performers paw at, ambush and exploit one another every which way.
They squeeze together onto a single sofa in order to pick and pull at one another, like children abandoning themselves to an explosive mix of curiosity, boredom and listlessness. Finally, they scamper across the stage like young foals that have just been turned out, before ending in an ardent embrace.
This looks like absolute freedom. Both mentally and physically, it sweeps embarrassment aside. Meg Stuart wanted to create a situation that went beyond simply role-playing, and to extend this into the theatre auditorium. You constantly seem to be witnessing an original world in which everything could go in any direction, and in which the imagination knows no bounds. Only Kristof Van Boven stays above the fray, acting as the standard bearer for an adult audience that no longer wishes to take these kinds of excesses seriously, for fear of the implications.
What purpose is served by the long epilogue, in which Claire Vivianne Sobottke begs for love, attention, money and warmth, or by the collective ballet of incomprehensible signs with which the performance ends? Her performers dance, sing, curse and flirt as if their final hour has come. Stuart breaks open her linguistic idiom to create lyrical dance theatre that unites performers and spectators in admiration and, yes, love. Celle du corps. Des miroitements fusent dans tous les sens.
In Built to Last , the mood stays light, bordering on irreverent, as the dancers assume historic movement patterns reminiscent of Isadora Duncan or German expressionist dance. Meg Stuart sets herself a challenge before creating a new dance. The American choreographer, who is based in Brussels and Berlin, claims to develop an entirely new movement language for every piece as she collaborates with directors, visual artists, musicians and designers. Rather than following well-trodden routes, these works explore the edges of what is possible. There is no new language emerging from sparky interactions with bolshie musicians here, just an acceptance of prewritten music from a dead composer.
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Her response was not to overthink it. The primary response was heroic. When you play it in your living room, your life becomes bigger. Composer Alain Franco joined the rehearsals as a kind of music dramaturg and suggested adding other composers, so the soundscore expanded into a rich tapestry of fragments by Dvorak, Rachmaninov, Schoenberg, Xenakis, Stockhausen and others.
This openness is unusual within contemporary dance, where many choreographers have resisted the aural backdrop offered by classical music, fearful it might gentrify their incendiary aesthetic with plush sounds and a veneer of respectability. Additionally, an association exists between classical music and ballet, whose narrative-driven choreography is antithetical to the conceptual purity pursued by many contemporary choreographers. But classical warhorses such as the Eroica can prove more than an aesthetic threat.
Or it can be read in a much more ambiguous way. With music we cannot ever be sure. In so far as it externalises our inner passion, music is potentially always a threat. The threat is proportional to monumentality, a theme that quickly emerged in rehearsals for Built to Last. History is a manner of perspective, not a question of being right or wrong. This questioning needs to be constant, as there is a danger of losing sight of the original meaning and intention behind a monument. It imposes thoughts and memories, and makes it clear that the present has a past. Music has also constantly imposed itself on dance.
With such a weighty subject matter, there is a danger that Built to Last could be self-involved and yawnsome, but Stuart insists the mood stays light, bordering on irreverent, as the dancers assume historic movement patterns reminiscent of Isadora Duncan or German expressionist dance.
This is true freedom. In taking on classical music warhorses, choreographer Meg Stuart has created a theatrical experience equally epic. Sprawling across two hours, Built to Last throws stones at monuments to the past, questioning our tacit relationship with bombastic expressions of heroism and ultimately presents an uplifting affirmation of the human spirit. Fourteen excerpts are used as metaphors for historical narrative. Stuart questions how this music can be appropriated and given an immovable mythical status, even though our perceptions of history constantly change.
This is the tension underpinning the entire performance: how does the individual interact with prescribed versions of history? The overall effect is complemented with energetic and pitch-perfect performances by the five performers, that include Maria F Scaroni and Dragana Bulut. First, the body. It begins to sway. Then the hand, seeking simple gestures, clenching and unclenching. Next the arm, extended, bending, seeking shape and form. The urge gradually brings all parts of the body to movement and from there to motion.
Set against an electronic soundscape, five performers relentlessly seek, find and are frustrated by patterns, culminating in a cacophony of movement and sound before one of the performers quietly brings the others to a halt before turning to nervously address the audience. So begins Built to Last, by renowned choreographer, Meg Stuart, making her Irish debut and kicking off the Dublin Dance Festival with an excellent production that sets the bar high.
When describing itself as a history of dance, Built to Last does itself a great disservice. For it speaks not just to the history of dance, but to the making of dance, to the need of the body to give expression, with or without music. Of an insatiable urge that can find momentarily release in forms and patterns, none ever big enough to accommodate all that needs to be expressed. At times fleetingly recognisable moments appear, tender tableaux temporarily take shape before passing away in the search for newer forms.
At other times it appears as if the lunatics have taken over the asylum as the struggle to find shape grapples with restrictions and the need for form. If all is shifting, what never changes is the striving for expression, the endless searching, the body constantly reaching out to catch the stars and channel all that heaven will allow. Self-consciously self-deprecating at times, it never ceases to engage, despite its uninterrupted two hours in length.
Scaroni and Kristof Van Boven give a delightful ensemble performance, as well as creating exquisite individual moments. The only thing to do is surrender to it. If dance forms aren't built to last, dance surely will as evidenced by this charming, insightful and, at times, sublime production. A must see. Sie beschnuppern sich gegenseitig, kitzeln die nackte Haut der Partner.
Egal ob Mann oder Frau. Doch Voyeure kommen in diesen pausenlosen zwei Stunden nur selten auf ihre Kosten. Dass das jemand macht, beweist, wie Meg Stuart das Publikum zu lockeren Partnern gemacht hat. Aber auch zu dritt bekommen die Musiker um Bassist Paul Lemp, der schon lange mit Stuart zusammenarbeitet, einen fetten Sound hin, der dem massiven Klang einer Big Band um nichts nachsteht. Erst in Zweierkonstellationen, dann als Gruppe. Die Musik nimmt Fahrt auf, die Bewegungen werden schneller. Dann kehrt Stille ein.
So nahe kommt einem Theater selten. Die Grenzen des Wahrscheinlichen dank Zaubereinlagen. Auch Schamgrenzen. Scaroni nackt. Die Messlatte liegt hoch. Beim Saisonendspurt geht es dabei Schlag auf Schlag. Erst am Tantra- und Hypnose-Workshops bzw. Das ist gut so! Three women and three men build towers and bridges with their bodies. In groups of three or four, they twist and entangle their bodies. All this is not new. The nose gets a run for its money; its urge to explore does not stop at the pubic border.
Irony, parody, comedy and genuine feelings are mingled together in this sensuous composition of body images, that Meg Stuart is now presenting at PACT Zollverein as part of the Ruhrtriennale. But this piece, which goes on for two hours without a break, has nothing to do with voyeurism.
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Carelessly and naive, they run free, rub each other and throw each other around. Some of them frequently comment their own actions. The way Meg Stuart engages the audience without making it feel uncomfortable is extraordinary. In a fully lit theatre, the spectators receive water, fruit and cake. They are offered clay to give their hand muscles a work out as the piece continues. Unrestrained, the performers talk to visitors, spray cologne or open their shirt and ask spectators to smell their sweat. The fact that they are willing to do so proves that Meg Stuart has succeeded in making the audience become a licentious partner in crime.
Until Our Hearts Stop marks a fresh step in the research that the choreographer Meg Stuart has been engaged in for more than two decades. She tirelessly attempts to pin down the strange interplay between what we feel physically and what we experience mentally, and in so doing, she rarely leaves the viewer unmoved. More and more, it is about experiments in which not only the performers, but also the spectators have a role to play. She regularly confronts viewers head on with the inherent difficulties of the human condition, which can leave them confused.
In Highway , for example, she dragged the spectators through a building, before unexpectedly abandoning them to weirdos who went on to indulge in some embarrassing rants. People often had no idea how to behave. All Together Now tore up theatrical conventions still further. It began with the audience being packed into a space that was far too small, while a voice expressed disgust at the ensuing sweat and odours. It ended with a feel-good session in which everyone was entreated to hold hands.
Some felt that they could have died of embarrassment. But as ever, this is precisely her point: why do we hate it so much when other people come too close to us? Why do we long for others, yet bolt if someone comes closer? What can we tolereate from one another, and what not? This is endlessly fascinating to watch, as Stuart always manages to find fresh ways of exploring this theme, and never fails to unsettle.
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The piece wrong-foots you to such as extent that at a certain point half way through, you barely know whether you are coming or going. To the overpowering jazzy sounds of the trio Samuel Halscheidt, Marc Lohr and Stefan Rusconi, the six performers have already groped, stalked and made use of one another in every conceivable way. It all begins with a strange yoga session, followed by an equally strange acrobatics exercise.
After this, all six performers plonk themselves down on a sofa together. Whether out of boredom or embarrassment, they pick at one another until they are rolling over the floor in a knot of bodies. Two men become embroiled in a dogfight. Two women separate them, before immediately going on to attack one another with equal savagery - and stark naked - before winding up in an intimate embrace. The fourth wall is breached An hour of these edgy, absurd scenes culminates in a synchronous dance comprised of incomprehensible signals.
Just as you have almost given up trying to understand it, the mood shifts. The spectators are suddenly involved in the action, whether they like it or not. The performers offer drinks and presents, sing birthday songs or stage a variety show. The performance then takes a magical turn, both literally and figuratively, with conjuring tricks and a mysterious ritual involving incense and a drum roll.
However, the mood is abruptly broken by the heartrending speech of a lone woman who endlessly begs for attention and love for her pitiful self. This is reminiscent of the weird, embarrassing figures that appeared in Highway Although you are aware that this is only theatre, it still makes you uncomfortable: with this scene, Meg Stuart holds up a mirror to us all. She illustrates how desperately we long for contact and attention, until our hearts stop. But you are left alone with that uncomfortable feeling, because the performance ends here. Until such time as Stuart comes to knit another chapter onto this endless tale.
Nackt steht sie da. Aber das kann eigentlich nicht sein. Aber irgendwie hat es Meg Stuart doch geschafft: einen Auftritt aus dem Nichts. So etwas gelingt nur ihr: der grossen, unfassbaren, unnahbaren Choreografin. Man kann es selbst nicht so richtig glauben. Im Gegenteil. September I take it back. Wie geht das zusammen? Hunter ist zwar ein Abschluss, aber zugleich ein Neubeginn — ein Durchgangsstadium und Sammelpunkt von Energien.
Die Spiele der Muskeln, die zeitliche Perfektion: all das zusammen wirkt atemberaubend leidenschaftlich und dabei klinisch sauber. Hebbel am Ufer: The dancer and choreographer Meg Stuart performs her first evening length solo Hunter. The American choreographer, who has been living in Berlin for several years now, has created her first evening length solo at the age of With her unremitting distortions and displacements she proves, yet again, the expressive power of the body.
And then she begins to talk: about her parents, who were both directors and who ran a community theatre. The performance is about the memories that have brought her to this point, and that she has poured into words. Meg Stuart explores how experiences leave their imprints on your body — a constantly recurring theme with her. In Hunter , she again opts for a multimedia approach and works with a range of materials.
At the beginning we see her sitting at a table, lost in thought, cutting up black and white photos from her personal photo album and then arranging the cuttings. In one photo, the faces of a mother and child are replaced by animal heads; other photos are painted over with nail varnish, or have shiny paper stuck on top of them. The soundtrack is a collage of different musical works, sounds and voices. Two women speak about the fallout from a divorce, another woman reports on a feminist who tries and fails to ruffle a playboy bunny.
A broken male voice lectures about the need for change. Private life and philosophy, humour and profundity go hand in hand. The scenographer Barbara Ehnes has built a spacious construction for Meg Stuart, constructed from Plexiglas and metal tubes, which covers the stage like a screen. As a result, the space is already alive with meaning when Meg Stuart finally takes to the stage. She then lies down on the ground and starts, as though she is charged with electricity. Her body is under huge pressure. She flounders and shakes, throws her arms around and jumps up.
She is totally subject to the uncontrolled movements of her body. In Hunter it is as though her insides are being torn. The variation in her syntax of movement is unique. The scene in which she only uses her arms is overwhelming. Her arms begin to lead a disturbing life of their own. They knot together, become entwined, break free again and only allow themselves to calm down when they are forced to do so. In the flickering projections, you see the father, or the young daughter showing off her first dance steps. They show Meg Stuart revolving as if in a trance, or a Stuart who is exploring her body as if it were a strange object.
Meg Stuart moves between extremely divergent emotional states. For example, she suddenly sinks into an extremely colourful patchwork tent with a series of side-arms. Childhood is never completely over. At a different point, she takes to the stage with her upper body bared, hiding behind a long, blonde wig. Meg Stuart is one of the most influential choreographers of the contemporary dance scene. Since she has been linked to HAU Hebbel am Ufer as an artist in residence, her career has once again been given a boost. Her creations can now be seen regularly, and are almost always sold out.
In Hunter she now shows that she is not only a collector, but also a hunter. She picks up the things she finds and digs into the deepest layers of memory. The dancer accepts her past, which has a liberating effect. She concludes with an amusing speech in which she sends all those shamans, life coaches and craniosacral therapists packing. In short, she danced for a crowd of Meg Stuart fans. She rewarded their loyalty with a performance that once again personally highlights her style and her unique ability to create moods.
Cutting; tearing; daubing; turning on unusual axes; creating new compositions; distorting and accelerating. These are the techniques that you often see in her choreographies, used alongside everyday movements and dance movements. However, for the first time, she also applies this approach to images.
With her back to the audience, Meg Stuart sits at a table messing around with scissors, felt tips, glue, photo clippings and other fragments of memory. A camera projects this, much enlarged, onto a piece of fabric. Everything recognisable changes continually in front of our eyes. She starts to dance in swinging, shocking movements to a soundscape consisting of all kinds of sound fragments that change in under a second. The movements become mechanical, graceful, fragile and aggressive. The most contradictory emotions and situations are brought together in a highly compact way.
Even though they are impossible to name, the movements do not appear abstract. Time and time again, they approach a form of emotional expression or physical state. The battle for memories that simply do not want to become clear is a dramatic element that plays out here in the unique and fragile body of the choreographer. Super 8 family films and childhood photos are regularly beamed onto a series of projection surfaces. The voices of an old man and an old woman who are trying to express in detail the way things once were can also be heard.
At the end, Meg Stuart takes a purring projector whose speed has been adjusted incorrectly, and the snowy image it projects creates an eventful void. Slowly the image moves to the ceiling and fades out. Such expressive visual and acoustic elements create a reference context for the dance. As well as allusions to the biographical and the personal, there are images of burning houses or bleeding mouths whipping past at high speed.
But the difference this time lies in the embarrassment and the toughness, the vulnerability and the violence as facets of one person; as a part of her past. Lighting Jan Maertens , sound design Vincent Malstaf , scenography Barbara Ehnes and video Chris Kondek combine to create a space that is not so much a solitary environment, but a tiny fragment of a universe: a world filled with private moments and more universal events.
In this world, objects — such as a gleaming foil that changes colour in different lights — connect with the dancer to form moving installations. This creates the effect of seeing, and at the same time not seeing, her body, and the balling of the light that can expand into a space. It is all rather ominous, a little unworldly, and over before you know it. Es ist eine lange und dichte Erinnerungsfahrt, auf die einen Stuart mitnimmt. Die Eltern sind krank, vielleicht sogar schon gestorben. Bis jetzt bildeten sie so etwas wie das Dach der Vergangenheit, jetzt muss man sich selbst eines bauen.
Sie hat sich eine Erinnerungsbude gebaut. Trotz ihrer Gastspiele rund um die Welt musste sie zu Interviews regelrecht getragen werden. Hat sie denn in den anderen 70 Jahren nichts erlebt? William S. Und gesehen, wie sie das wirklich verlegen macht. Zwischendurch war Stuart halbnackt zwischen Zotteln vergraben.
Impossible de tout saisir, la sarabande est multiple. En effet. Pas moins. Meg Stuart mistrusts words. She says so herself. It is worth trying to use many words, and expressing them as if each were of equal importance. You can incorporate images, sounds, movements and materials in this. You can show a great deal of all sorts of things behind, beside and layered on top of one another; mix fiction and truth, documents and moods, memories and dreams, the visible and the invisible, your own thoughts and those of others. The key thing about Hunter is its idiosyncrasy, which it approaches in multiple phases.
Meg Stuart as an artist, as a woman, and as a human being invites us to discover the world from the perspective of her questions and positions, but at the same time, to understand their origins. This is easy, indeed very easy to understand. For over twenty years, Meg Stuart has been working in the fields of dance and theatre on projects with a wide variety of forms and performance formats. However, Hunter is the first solo she has created for herself that is designed to fill a whole evening.
The idea of a solo, especially in the field of dance, can rapidly lead you astray. Her announcement that she intends to study her body as if it were an archive is also misleading. One can argue in many respects that Hunter is major piece and leans towards a Gesamtkunstwerk [total work of art]. In addition to the choreography on the stage, a number of other artists were involved with Hunter.
The dramaturge Jeroen Peeters provided the audience with two pages of text that are very much worth reading and keeping. The text contains all sorts of expressions of the creative process, and draws on the ideas of Charlotte Selver, Yoko Ono, Miranda July and many others. The sound designer Vincent Malstaf designed a collage of sounds, lieder chiefly from the 80s and electronic music.
This provides a structure for the performance and also perhaps for the house in which Meg Stuart paces about. It is an overcrowded house that does not actually do anything, apart from continually recounting stories. This both amuses and disturbs us. It alternates between silence and howling. The scenographer Barbara Ehnes constructed a giant sculpture made of extra large craft materials on the HAU2 stage.
And sure enough, the evening begins with a glitter, moss and photo collage of Meg Stuart herself. The costume designer Claudia Hill worked on the same principle: there must be a lot of everything, meanings cannot be pinned down into fixed categories, and every phase of the performance demands that the performer be presented differently. The lighting designer Jan Maertens shaped the opening or protective closing off of the stage, and the possibilities of seeing and being seen.
And last but not least, the video artist Chris Kondek used the three projection surfaces for a montage of photos and video recordings. He created a composition using clippings, raw material, and overlapping images, often of people and often of landscapes. Although it actually revolves around autobiographical documents, outsiders, who know nothing and no one, do not understand its true character. There is apparently no hierarchical structure between the elements and their meanings.
Coincidentally, what this world shows and tells us is just like the world in our heads. At the same time, the evening is highly structured. Phase one: handicraft session with Meg Stuart, live broadcast of detailed recordings, private- and other photos, and manipulation of the visual material.
She stands, walks, kneels down, does not dance and does not look in front of her. And even when she does look at the audience, we can barely see her face. Hair, hands or arms block our view. In the meantime, she gives the impression of being distraught. She paces about.
Phases three and four, or five; in any case the final one: Meg Stuart gets dressed again. Eventually, at last, she has really danced. In silence, she improvises with dance material and changes her expression numerous times. For specific, extremely short moments, she is totally relaxed and happy.
There is a lot you could say about this. But now only the following can be said: everything that happened up to this moment was necessary. So Meg Stuart can now put on a lifejacket and pin on a microphone. Meg Stuart as an entertainer. She goes on to talk in an increasingly less desperate way about all sorts of things.
She makes no distinction between the intimate and the public, between the banal and the visionary. She asks about our future. There is nothing to suggest that there is any kind of calculation behind her words. This is not often the case, and it is thus extraordinary.
It touches us, but in a totally unsentimental way — and will also irritate some people. It was a very special evening, a gift. Pour ne pas regarder devant. Des moments fugaces. Ein Chaos im positiven Sinne. Twenty years after setting up her company Damaged Goods, Meg Stuart is staging her first, evening-length solo. Oddly enough, solos offer an inherent promise of truthfulness. As an artist, there is nothing you can behind — other than yourself.
And it so happens that this is precisely what Stuart does, without equal, in Hunter. She conceals and then exposes herself in a capricious stream of images, movements, video and sound. The result is a kaleidoscope of mirror images whose contours blur before your very eyes. Copper pipes emerge from a Perspex tube several metres high and extend deep into the hall. This serves to immediately highlight the ambition behind Hunter, which is to turn the personal inside out.
The performance begins with the choreographer sitting at a table, working on a kind of collage. Old family snaps and a photo of Yoko Ono are covered in glitter, while cuttings fastened with pins are re-arranged and set alight. Here, you see in microcosm what Hunter is about to do for the next two hours on a larger scale: namely trace the biographical and artistic tracks that have made Stuart who she is today.
Mind you, the image with which you are presented is anything but objective. The pins in the photographs work like acupuncture, and this becomes apparent when she hesitantly begins to dance. Her arms and legs are like antennae that pick up the strangest frequencies. This is no less than a synthesis of the arts, a thrilling phantasmagoria. Hunter shows us a thousand faces and demands the same number of eyes to take it all in. The elusive Stuart transforms herself from one shadow into another, with her body as the only tangible reality.
And yes, you will rarely come closer to the truth about a person or perhaps the whole of mankind than you do here: that she does not exist, however doggedly we might pursue her. Some performances are gone the next day. Some stay with you a little longer. And some keep on popping up in your mind. Such as Hunter, the first evening-length solo by Meg Stuart.
I watched the American choreographer perform it a couple of months ago in Essen, and scenes and images from it have been coming back to me regularly, since. Hunter, a piece about memories. The Venice Biennale wanted it on its programme last June, and the well-respected German magazine tanz awarded Meg Stuart the title choreographer of the year for it. The piece will have its Belgian premiere this week at Kaaitheater, Brussels. A first of a special kind.
Meaning of "Rollator" in the German dictionary
It premiered in Berlin March It is a piece centered around memories, but it is certainly not solely about the past, as it is strangely contemporary too. Look at what my body is doing. As if she herself is amazed by what those arms are coming up with, oh and look how they move in a completely unexpected way. Hunter comprises once again one of those sequences Meg Stuart is extremely good at. It looks as if her body is an antenna, and it keeps on receiving different signals, from one surprise to the next. In this case: switching from one memory to the next.
From one remembered movement to another one. The body as a brain: remembering. Just as that soundscape seems to be continuously switching channels too, jumping from music to spoken word. Its one of the scenes that have been coming back to me. Or that moment she all of a sudden starts talking, almost in a stand up-comedy sort of way. Explaining why she tried to stay away from talking on stage, and then telling an amusing story that jumps from Trisha Brown to Casper The Friendly Ghost and kundalini yoga.
I remember the color orange. A set design mixing a spiderweb with a circus tent. And then that fantastic scene in which a pair of speakers descend from above and Meg Stuart starts singing with Yoko Ono. I also clearly remember sitting there, in the bar, afterwards, perplexed by this information overload, wondering what to make of it.
All of it is real, I was told afterwards. The photos, the video footage, the voices her brother : it all really is from her past. And so Hunter combines life family and work influences. But it is not about the puzzle, about trying to put all the pieces together as a viewer, about figuring out what the link is between exhibit A and memory B, about lessons learned. Until I realized that it was no use. There is no way you can capture everything, and remember everything.
Hunter reminded me of that feeling. Hunter is the Meg Stuart way of dealing with that, and she does so, not only in a strangely beautiful, but also in a very contemporary way, in this world in which everybody is coping with an information overload. Nous sommes des humains voyageant dans le temps pour observer les humains et nous cherchons la meilleure attitude physique pour entrer en contact avec tels et tels mondes.
Il y a aussi une allusion au Tanztheater allemand. A picture that hurts, even if there is no story to accompany it — no tragedy, not even a scream. The entire first part of Sketches belongs to Hill. These are acts without consequences, anti-processes like eating fast food, writing job applications, fruitless shopping trips. The scene may be paradise or a typhoid-infested swamp, but at least the issue of style has been taken care of. The artist herself is without makeup, in a brown vintage pullover, hex bleached blonde hair tousled. Damaged Goods, the company Stuart founded in , is based in Brussels but her apartment is in Berlin.
Few of her European colleagues can match this record. Apart from Stuart, it is rare for contemporary choreographers to be offered residences at theaters where dance is not part of the usual programme. To hear Stuart tell the story, it sounds like her own career came about more by chance than design. Maybe that is part of her secret. Sketches is now being staged as a striking start to her time at HAU. The quilted lady mentioned before also made a previous appearance, featuring under the working title Blanket Lady in the performance Moments at ZKM in Karlsruhe.
This lady with the aura of a sad down-and-out queen, like something straight out of a Samuel Beckett play, gives an idea of the basic mood of many pieces by Stuart: the party is allays already over, even when, as in Visitors Only , it is still in full swing. There are faint glows at some points, but otherwise plenty of aimlessness and meaninglessness, mixed with a sense of somnambulistic resignation. They are somatic bodies that shiver, articulate ticks, pull faces, get in a whirl, become entangled.
Not tied to any particular soul, they are traumatic dream dancers, free of pathos, imprisoned in a vegetative fabric of interconnected movements. This may also be what gives her works their often contemplative, even meditative quality, in spite of the aggressive music and abrupt scene changes.
But this does not mean relaxation in the conventional sense. More of a David Lynch-like Mulholland Drive feeling, a perpetual nervousness that lasts and lasts until it has established a level of its own, becoming absolute. This was unusual for a choreographer who otherwise makes very deliberate use of live music.
The almost moral perspective on humans, appearing animal-like under the monumentality of their cultural products, was another surprise. Choreographed and stage managed through and through, the piece is also likely to have alienated some fans, while coming as a relief to others. The audience must put up with this — after all, Stuart is not known for letting conceptual statements limit her scope for action.
The reason? Astrid Kaminski is based in Berlin. She writes on literature, dance and performance for a number of newspapers and magazines. Ganz und gar nicht. Es ist eine absurde Mischung, und sich mit dieser Musik tanztheatralisch auseinandersetzen zu wollen ist ein Vorhaben, von dem man mit Sicherheit zu wissen meint: Das kann nicht gutgehen.
Aber dann geschieht etwas Erstaunliches. Scardini, Davis Freeman und Kristof van Boven. Aber so subtil, dass sich ein fantastisches Ballett ergibt. Pausieren, resignieren und, mit den Schultern zuckend, eine neue Schleife drehen. Sie ist eben nur ein kleiner, sterblicher, verkleideter Mensch. Eine, die in Berlin Ihre Fortsetzung findet.
Sie geht also Berlin erfreulicherweise nicht verloren. Es knistert und knarzt. Die Choreografin hat um diese massiven Melodien von Beethoven und Rachmaninow, Bruckner oder Lachenmann ein dialogisches Spiel entwickelt. Scaroni, Kristof Van Boven gehen voll und ganz in der Musik auf, kehren Emotionen hervor, interpretieren diese auf ihre eigene Art und Weise. Eines bleibt dabei aber gewiss: Nichts bleibt ewig bestehen. Why do we erect monuments? In both dance and visual language, as much as in the choice of music, Stuart and her performers try to breath new life into cultural monuments, and to give us something akin to love and comfort.
Ultimately, the dancers fail in their intention, although they do their very best. Built to Last has it all: an arsenal of impressive images, virtuoso players and exciting waves of music that keeps the viewer on the edge of his seat. Built to Last is like a journey that provides us with the space to think about who and what we are.
Choreographer Meg Stuart was artist-in-residence at Hebbel am Ufer and performed two of her pieces there in January. For years, she has been commuting between Brussels the headquarters of her company, Damaged Goods and Berlin, not to mention a whole host of other places while on tour. Stuart describes this as a milestone in her career, for her year old son at least. In her awards ceremony acceptance speech, Stuart spoke frankly. Which was very magnanimous and, at the same time, a way of forgiving all those who have walked out of her productions over the last twenty years.
On the other hand, there is also a die-hard community of fans and enthusiasts, who even heap praise on weaker works such as the fault lines Unlike the performance Built to Last, which was supported by the huge infrastructure of a civic theatre, the attic room in HAU forced her to be modest in every way. The contrast prevents you from becoming lazy. In the end, every work feels like a trek across the mountaintops — the thing you have only just built is then demolished. Just like designing a notebook. Behind this, as Stuart admits, is the wish to articulate the typical traits of modern life: a lack of freedom combined with a longing for communality.
Meg Stuart has always been a risk taker, and will always be aesthetically unpredictable. A cowbell, lots of marbles rolling over the floor, a bag lady from outer space, and a drum kit producing sound without a drummer. I promise it will happen to you too. Art collectors should be bidding for it.
As you enter the room, a pompous movie theme is playing. Looking for a place to sit at one of the four sides of the stage, you notice that the dancers and performers are getting ready. Some of them run around or roll on the floor. Others are busy with all kinds of props.