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Othello, that kind of prejudice

a fictive theater play

inspired by Othello by Shakespeare



A quote by Nina Simone which for me summarize the story of Othello:

"The worst thing about that kind of prejudice... is that while you feel hurt and angry and all the rest of it, it feeds you self-doubt. You start thinking, perhaps I am not good enough."

My concept is to use the story of Othello as a tool to speak out about racism and sexism in our society and in the cultural sector.

This happens in two steps.

The first step is to acknowledge the problem and make it obvious on stage. The second step is to give power to the oppressed characters at the end.

In my concept, the parallel between the characters and the experiences of the actors are very important.

I want to design a space which would help to share experiences during the rehearsals.

You can have a look at my research here.

Half of the audience will sit on stage. The dubbel portal (a specificity of the Theater Bonn) reinforces this mirror effect. An extension of the stage into the audience unites the space. The first act (which happens in Venice) will be played with the curtains closed to represent the closed elitist white male atmosphere. The scene is filmed and the audience sees what is happening between the two curtains on two projection screens made of old cardboards. From the second act onwards, the curtains are open and the two halves of the audience face each other. 

On the sides of the stage, old cardboard boxes, pots of paint, brushes, rolls of painting tapes and rolls of red tape are visible. The actors build the set themselves during the play using all these materials.

I analyzed each character based on important quotes of the play. I chose a fictive cast based on their experiences. For each of them I made a moodboard to start visualizing the characters. 

Until the moment they start acting, the actors sit in the audience. They come on stage as themselves and wear their own clothes. During the play, the characters who go through a development take off some of their clothes, use paint on their bodies and make accessories with the cardboard used in for the scenography

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