Angélica Liddell uses all the tricks of a theatre in which beauty, eroticism, and death are inextricably intertwined to delve into the deepest recesses of human nature. A way to try to say what cannot be said. With total sincerity and explosive power, the director, based in Madrid, exposes herself to question herself. And through her heartrending cry of distress, and her deeply human cry of hope, she tries to bring about the triumph of the law of poetry over the law of the State. Terribly disturbed by the violence of Issei Sagawa, the Japanese student who killed and ate his classmate, and by that of the perpetrators of the terrorist attacks of November 2015 in Paris, she proposes with ¿ Qué haré yo con esta espada ? (And what will I do with this sword?) a journey from Tokyo to Paris and back, in order to free, inside this fictional world, the homicidal instincts often buried deep within us. With her companions Hölderlin, Cioran, Mishima, and Nietzsche, she goes back to the origins of tragedy and seeks to transform on the stage real violence into mythological violence. Using her power as an actress to express the fragility of desires and do away with bourgeois self-righteous morals, Angélica Liddell leads us to places where tranquillity does not exist.
On the stage and in every one of her artistic creations, Angélica Liddell is at once writer, director, scenographer, actress, and performer. Since 1993, and the creation of her company Atra Bilis (Black Bile), she has explored the ways we say pain, from intimate confessions to powerful imprecations. She thinks “everything goes through the body in order to reach the mind.” And nothing could stop her from digging ever deeper into the unexplainable and the inexpressible. All that hides in the darkest zones of the human soul, the zones that are the most dangerous to travel through, is for Angélica Liddell a tool to help reveal a beauty that could well be life-saving. She came to the Festival d'Avignon for the first time in 2010 with El año de Ricardo (The Year of Richard) and La Casa de la Fuerza (The House of Strength), then again in 2011 with Maldito sea el hombre que confía en el hombre (Cursed be the man who trusts in men) and in 2013 with Ping Pang Qiu and Todo el cielo Sobre la Tierre (El síndrome de Wendy) (All the Sky Above the Earth (Wendy's Syndrome)). Uninterested in gratuitous provocation but completely invested into the ceremonials she invents onstage, Angélica Liddell surprises by her refusal to “fake with the truth,” and by the way she meticulously organises a chaos from which can sometimes emerge tenderness and humour.
Text, direction, stage design and costumes Angélica Liddell
Lights Carlos Marquerie
Sound Antonio Navarro
With Victoria Aime, Louise Arcangioli, Paola Cabello Schoenmakers, Sarah Cabello Schoenmakers, Lola Cordón, Marie Delgado Trujillo, Greta García, Masanori Kikuzawa, Angélica Liddell, Gumersindo Puche, Estíbaliz Racionero Balsera, Ichiro Sugae, Kazan Tachimoto, Irie Taira, Lucía Yenes and the participation of amateurs
Production Ianquinandi SL
Co-production Festival d'Avignon
With the support of Community of Madrid and the Japan Foundation, Festival/Tokyo
Que ferai-je, moi, de cette épée? by Angélica Liddell, translation Christilla Vasserot, is published by éditions Les Solitaires intempestifs.