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Feierliche Eröffnung

Opening speech by Sharon Dodua Otoo / followed by "SIBYL" by William Kentridge

Opening speech by Sharon Dodua Otoo

Last year, the writer, editor and political activist Sharon Dodua Otoo was a guest at Ruhrfestspiele in the series "... in conversation with Denis Scheck". The reading from her first, highly acclaimed novel "Adas Raum" and the conversation were haunting. Born in London in 1972 and now living in Berlin, the Ingeborg Bachmann Prize winner sets new standards with her writing: in terms of form and content, she breaks up ways of speaking and thinking and thus questions what is supposedly established. She is the editor of the English-language book series "Witnessed" in the edition assemblage. Her first novella "The Things I Am Thinking While Smiling Politely" was published in English in 2012 and in German in 2013, followed by "Synchronicity" in 2014. She won the 2016 Ingeborg Bachmann Prize with her first story written in German, "Herr Gröttrup setzt sich hin". In her opening speech for the 2020 Bachmann Prize, "Dürfen Schwarze Blumen Malen?", she discussed the conditions of writing for Black authors in the German-language literary landscape.
Sharon Dodua Otoo crosses linguistic and narrative boundaries. She creates images and spaces that allow us to see life with new clarity. Engaging and anarchic, eye-opening and exciting, she succeeds in rethinking perspectives and experiences. Her storytelling finds new approaches to social upheavals, individual memories and collective traumas. Her courage and desire to tell, her empathy and humour, her curiosity to understand our present leave us breathless. Now Sharon Dodua Otoo returns to the Ruhrfestspiele and, after Judith Schalansky, Clemens Meyer and Enis Maci, will give this year's opening speech.

Afterwards: "SIBYL" by William Kentridge

by William Kentridge

Musical composition and conception by Nhlanhla Mahlangu and Kyle Shepherd

Directed by William Kentridge

German premiere

Since his early years in apartheid South Africa, William Kentridge’s art is shaped by theatrical forms of expression. As a painter and sculptor, he has repeatedly experimented with the intersections of theater, music, and (animated) film. Over the decades, a complex and multi-layered body of work has emerged. It was exhibited in the world's most prestigious museums and shown in theaters, opera houses and at festivals. In this regard, "Sibyl" is exemplary of William Kentridge's oeuvre, combining theater, literature, dance, musical theater, and film into a unique work of art.
"Sibyl" does not tell a linear story. Kentridge, whose visual art is dominated by charcoal drawings on newsprint or old files, literally lets his work come into being in front of the audience. The piece is inspired by the prophetess Sibyl of Cumae who, according to legend, wrote the fate of people on oak leaves and placed them on a pile of leaves at the entrance to her cave. This evening for ten performers consists of two parts. Part 1, entitled "The Moment Has Gone", contains a short film and live music. The second part is the chamber opera "Waiting for Sibyl". The result is a visually powerful, musical evening that deals with the creative power of art, the beauty of nature, and its merciless exploitation by mankind. "Sibyl" will open the Ruhrfestspiele 2022.

With: Kyle Shepherd (Piano), Nhlanhla Mahlangu (Vocalist | Dancer), Xolisile Bongwana (Vocalist | Dancer), Thulani Chauke (Dancer), Teresa Phuti Mojela (Dancer), Thandazile ‘Sonia’ Radebe (Dancer), Ayanda Nhlangothi (Vocalist), Zandile Hlatshwayo (Vocalist), Siphiwe Nkabinde (Vocalist), S’busiso Shozi (Vocalist)
Concept, Director: William Kentridge
Choral Composer, Associate Director: Nhlanhla Mahlangu
Composer, Music Director: Kyle Shepherd
Editing, Compositing: Žana Marović
Costume Design: Greta Goiris
Set Design: Sabine Theunissen
Lighting Design: Urs Schönebaum
Sound Engineering: Gavan Eckhart
Cinematography: Duško Marović
Video Orchestration: Kim Gunning

„Sibyl“ was commissioned by: Teatro dell'Opera di Roma, Les Théâtres de la Ville de Luxembourg und Dramaten - Stockholm.
Executive Producer: THE OFFICE performing arts + film

Age: 10+

Language: in Englisch, Zulu, Xhosa, Sesotho & Ndebele mit deutschen Übertiteln, auch ohne Sprachkenntnisse verständlich

Duration: 2h 20m