DEAD, DEAD AND VERY DEAD (2007)
A moral tale with a classic theme: The world is ravaged by a terrible plague! A Diva is to be married to the son of her former lover. She was once famous, but now alcohol and drugs have ruined her singing voice. The father is the filthy rich owner of a pharmaceutical company. He wants to stop the wedding at any price. But in spite of all his money and his huge production apparatus he has been unable to prevent the plague and the son from claiming the Diva. He is powerless in his power.
The daughter is also plague-stricken. On the brink of a mental breakdown she sadistically humiliates her (human) dog and makes a pass at the priest who is supposed to marry this odd couple. And the priest, filled with carnal desires, betrays his calling.
This apocalyptic world is imbued with Man's debasement. The last remaining moral and religious principles appear naked and obtuse. Linked to a carnal desire that cannot be transformed into anything of value.
And yet Barker's acrid text is strangely beautiful and joyful. DEAD, DEAD AND VERY DEAD is a dramatic poem. It contains lyrical beauty as well as cunning black humour. The lines and dialogues present themselves as razor-sharp musical motifs in theatrical space.
Barker's topic is of great current interest in an age where the media pursue fear as the strongest possible sales pitch. The text presents us with an idea of how mankind may react in a situation where there is no tomorrow.
Text: Howard Barker
Translation: Annette Lindegaard
Direction/Set design: Jacob F. Schokking
Composer: F.M. Einheit
Morten Askov Hemmingsen
Light: Peter Plesner
Sound: Mogens Lauersen
Video: Jakob Thorbek
Producer: Traudi Palsbøll
Produced by Holland House in collaboration with Kaleidoskop/K2