‘Pleasant Island’ at Theater Commons Tokyo 2020

©Bea Borgers

‘Pleasant Island’ at Theater Commons Tokyo 2020

Place: Theater Commons Tokyo

Time: March 5 and 6 at 19:00

Silke Huysmans & Hannes Dereere “Pleasant Island” | THEATER COMMONS’20

Emerging artist duo Silke Huysmans & Hannes Dereere present a new form of documentary theater performed entirely through a smartphone. 

Silke Huysmans and Hannes Dereere are gaining traction as new innovators of documentary theater. Without uttering a single word on stage, they use an iPhone to bring the reality of Naulu, a small Pacific island-state, to life. Once described as the richest nation in the world due to phosphate mining, the island-state was stripped dry of all natural resources and left to file for bankruptcy. In exchange for large sums of financial aid, it now serves as a detention camp for Australia’s asylum-seekers.

Depleted of ecological, economic, and humanitarian means, this “pleasant island” foreshadows a potential encroaching future. With their ability to reveal the tragedy of other societies through simple movements of their fingers, the two artists assume both the superiority and violence that come with their position as outsiders. Within this framework, what else might they summon to the stage beyond devastating reality?