After being enthusiastically received by audience and art critics, the show The Second Law of Thermodynamics is returning for a second series of performances at Performance Art Platform, the residence of Ensemble 209.
Ensemble members, artists from various disciplines and different countries of origin, took part in the joint process of creating a performance that looks at the tension-filled world that characterizes periphery cultures in Israeli reality. The environment of the New Central Bus Station, which has become a center for immigrant minorities, was the source of inspiration in the intensive work process.
The performance is characterized by its unique structure of a "sunken classroom," which breaks with standard performance conventions, design by the Architect and artist: Oren Sagiv. The performance takes place as a multi-faceted lesson, while the 40-member audience sits in the middle, surrounded by school tables on all sides that are used as the stage. The dynamic show takes place simultaneously on all sides.
The performance takes the format of "lessons": each participant presents a lesson/personal story from their childhood that shaped their identity and social difference. Woven throughout this are universal children’s games which emphasis everyone’s difference but also all that they have in common. In addition, dispersed throughout the performance are "public" texts taken from school textbooks, newspapers, the internet, and from the cultural database of each of the participants. These elements are combined with a visual language incorporating movement, song, music, video, and various stage activities, thus creating a rich, dynamic, and surprising collage. In the last part of the performance the structure is reversed.
Participating in the performance are Yosuef Salame (36), an Israeli Arab artist living in Ramle; Bayne Gatuhunen (31), an actor who immigrated from Ethiopia; Yana Fridman (39), an actress who immigrated from Kazakhstan; Daniel Bruk (26), a film student who immigrated from Russia; Beni Kori (42), a performance artist who immigrated from Turkey; Lior Amir-Kariel (52), an Israeli-born performance artist.
The performance artist and director of Performance Art Platform, Tamar Raban, who conceived and directed the performance, plays an active part throughout the show. Raban writes texts on the walls taken from "The Health Notebook" – a pamphlet designed to teach the basics of hygiene and cleanliness to Jewish school children, on the eve of the creation of the State of Israel. These seemingly innocent texts conceal the foundations of a nationalist and racist education. Guy Gutman accompanies the performance with live music on a wide variety of instruments, thus giving the performance a gentle and complete musical quality.
This is the first production by Ensemble 209 at Performance Art Platform’s new location at the New Central Bus Station. The Ensemble, one of seven theater groups supported by the Ministry for Education, Culture, and Sport, is just one of the many growing activities held at Performance Art Platform, a home for performance art that hosts performance artists from Israel and abroad as well as holding ongoing workshops. The present series of performances has ended; for details of additional dates please check current listings.
At this time the Ensemble has started working on a new production "Grandmother’s Stories". Details of the production and expected premiere dates will published shortly.