Art Happens

Tambourines (new)

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© Orpheas Emirzas

Inspired by the novel The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthrone. A young woman has a child, and everyone is wondering who the father is. But Hester Prynne refuses to reveal who it is. In 17th-century America, this kind of stubbornness cannot go unpunished, so Hester is forced to wear a scarlet red “A” on her chest at all times.

23 – 25 November 2023
Festival d’Automne à Paris
Centre Pompidou
7 February 2024
Schauspielhaus Zürich

Back when the author Nathaniel Hawthorne wrote the novel The Scarlet Letter, there was no designation for women who had a free approach to their bodies and sexuality, and even less support. In their honour, choreographer and dancer Trajal Harrell takes an imaginative look back: What could have happened in those colonial times, when European settlers occupied foreign territory and subjected their women to arbitrary rules if a woman with an illegitimate child had actually been condemned to wear the scarlet “A”? From where would gloating and solidarity have been expected? Together the performers and audience celebrate the possibility of changing the future by memorializing historical regret.
The choreographer, accompanied by visual artist Sarah Sze, has turned Tambourines into a “flexible” laboratory piece, with guests joining the stage for the duration of a performance. “Never stand still”, Trajal Harrell sums up.

Staging, Choreography, Stage design, Costume design, Soundtrack: Trajal Harrell
With: New KydTrajal HarrellPerle PalombeCobleh Graven PaluccaSonghay ToldonOndrej Vidlar
Communicators-Assistants: Frances Chiaverini, Vânia Doutel Vaz, Stephen Thompson 
Installation: Sarah Sze
Lighting: Sylvain Rausa
Dramaturgy: Katinka Deecke
Production: Björn Pätz
Schauspielhaus Zürich with the Schauspielhaus Zürich Dance Ensemble

Co-production: Festival d’Automne à Paris, Les Spectacles Vivants – Centre Pompidou Paris
Supported by Trajal Harrell Schauspielhaus Zürich Dance Ensemble Fan Club and Dance Reflections by Van Cleef & Arpels
Diffusion: ART HAPPENS

DatePerformanceCity CountryOrganisation/Venue
02.08.2024TambourinesVenice (it)Biennale Danza
03.08.2024TambourinesVenice (it)Biennale Danza
23.03.2024TambourinesLausanne (ch)Théâtre Vidy-Lausanne
22.03.2024TambourinesLausanne (ch)Théâtre Vidy-Lausanne
27.02.2024TambourinesZurich (ch)Schauspielhaus Zürich
21.02.2024TambourinesZurich (ch)Schauspielhaus Zürich
20.02.2024TambourinesZurich (ch)Schauspielhaus Zürich
18.02.2024TambourinesZurich (ch)Schauspielhaus Zürich
17.02.2024TambourinesZurich (ch)Schauspielhaus Zürich
11.02.2024TambourinesZurich (ch)Schauspielhaus Zürich
09.02.2024TambourinesZurich (ch)Schauspielhaus Zürich
07.02.2024Tambourines  (Premiere)Zurich (ch)Schauspielhaus Zürich
25.11.2023Tambourines  (Avant-premiere)Paris (fr)Festival d'Automne à Paris/Centre Pompidou
24.11.2023Tambourines  (Avant-premiere)Paris (fr)Festival d'Automne à Paris/Centre Pompidou
23.11.2023Tambourines  (Avant-premiere)Paris (fr)Festival d'Automne à Paris/Centre Pompidou