A voice speaks to a body performing on stage. The voice surrounds the body, at times observing it, at others commanding it, at still others questioning it or veering into poetic reflections. The voice is female, the body is male. The body is white. 
The voice notes this, comments on it, critiques the body’s inherent privileges. It evokes, by contrast, other histories of bodies absent from the stage—black bodies exhibited in human zoos, enslaved bodies. 
Speaking from a place of gender and racial marginality, the voice subverts the white male gaze historically deployed to contain, diminish and control anyone deemed as “other.” The voice renders the white male body as the object of a black, rebellious, female gaze, and by doing so, strips that body of the power of its invisibility.  

Text/Voice Fatin Abbas Dance/Performance Matthew Rogers, Living Smile Vidya Choreography Chris Leuenberger Dramaturgy Marcel Schwald Outside Eyes Pascale Altenburger, Serena Dankwa, Lea Martini, Monika Truong and Living Smile Vidya Mentoring Sally De Kunst Sound Thomas Jeker Lights Daniel Tschanz Special thanks to René Agbor, Christi Dufour, JiHae Ko, Marcelo Kuna, Diego Mud and Sandeep TK 

ABSENT BODIES was realized thanks to the generous support of Dampfzentrale Bern, schloss bröllin e.V. (Residenzprogramm gefördert vom Ministerium für Bildung, Wissenschaft und Kultur des Landes Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Landkreis Vorpommern-Greifswald), Lo Studio Bellinzona, Kultur Stadt Bern, SWISSLOS/ Kultur Kanton Bern, Burgergemeinde Bern, Bürgi-Willert Stiftung, Schweizerische Interpretenstiftung, Netcetera,  Gesellschaft zu Ober-Gerwern, Gesellschaft zu Zimmerleuten. 

Past performances

30 June 2021 Premiere Dampfzentrale Bern

1 July 2021  Dampfzentrale Bern 

2 July 2021 Tortenessen Bern Bethlehem