Archive NEXT 2016

Riding on a cloud

Rabih Mroué (Lebanon)

65 minutes

What is truth in the flood of information about the Lebanese civil war ?

How do you find truth in a flood of text and image ? The Lebanese theatre maker Rabih Mroué is one of the most important voices in the present-day Arabic art scene. He makes intimate, humorous and intelligent theatre in which he critically analyses that which we call 'truth'. Growing up in civil war-torn Lebanon, where each party spread its own truth with violence and propaganda, he was confronted from childhood with the construction of truth. Mroué constructs his own truth -which is situated between the political reality, memories, facts and fiction- using newspaper reports, photographs, film and other found material and also gives his imagination free play. Can an artist tell the truth by means of fiction ? In Riding on a cloud his younger brother Yasser is on stage, a poet who was shot in the head by a sniper and has suffered from aphasia since. Because Yasser has lost his verbal skill, he started making videos which he combines on stage with his personal memories in order to create a subjective image of the political developments in Lebanon. Riding on a cloud is an international success story that moves a lot of people !

Rabih Mroué is a Lebanese actor, director, playwright and artist. Around 1989 he started studying drama at the Lebanese university. From 1993 to 2008 he worked for the Lebanese television channel Future Television as a writer and producer of the animation department. In those years he was involved -as a writer, producer and actor- in a lot of theatre plays, videos, films and mixed media productions. Frie Leysen (founder of deSingel and Kunstenfestivaldesarts) describes Mroué as the most important Lebanese artist and one of the most influential people in the whole Arabic world. Mroué : “Emotion is a dangerous weapon. With art you can really manipulate others. That's why I try in my work to reflect on emotional subjects from a critical distance.”

*19.11 - Rabih Mouré + Radouan Mriziga (55)

PERFORMANCE BY Rabih Mroué WRITTEN AND DIRECTED BY Rabih Mroué WITH Yasser Mroué IN COLLABORATION WITH Sarmad Louis ASSISTANT Petra Serhal ENGLISH TRANSLATION Ziad Nawfal GERMAN TRANSLATION Francesca Spinazzi FRENCH TRANSLATION Pascale Fougère SUPPORTED BY Fonds Podiumkunsten, Prins Claus Fonds, Hivos & Stichting Doen - (The Netherlands SPECIAL THANKS TO Lina Saneh, Frie Leysen, Mroué's Family (Souad, Ahmad, Ammar, Ziad, Maha, Mazen, Nabil And Fatima Bazzi), Ahlam Awada, Samar Maakaroun, Janine Broud, Karma And Nadi Louis THANKS TO Hito Steyerl, Manal Khader, Eric Baudelaire, Paul Khodr, Lamia Joreige, Joanna Hadjithomas And Khalil Joreige, Fariba Derakhshani, Mohamad Hojeiry, Matthias Lilienthal, Ali Zuraik, Louis Family, Petra Serhal, Hagop Derghougassian, Ziad Mroué, Christine Tohmé And Ashkal Alwan.