To Be Possessed
Tuesday 26 September
Venue: Mill of Pappas, Ballet Stage
Entrance fee: 2 euros
Possessions, exorcisms, inner voices, spectral presences.
Hara Kotsali sets up a solo about spirit possession, for which women were primarily accused and men took it upon themselves to exorcise them.
“To be possessed” is a solo physical and sound performance that exposes material and sound aspects of a heteronomous DIY archive of “possessed” women from different cultural contexts.
A dancer and choreographer, with parallel studies in theatre, anthropology and music, Hara Kotsali attempts to trace the phenomenon of spiritual possession with an expanded reading. Through a deconstructed stage ritual, she engages in a rehearsal of possession. She attempts to animate the cases she encounters, inviting them to reveal their overwhelming yet subversive character.
Idea, choreography and performance by Hara Kotsali
Dramaturgy: Dimitra Mitropoulou
Artistic advisor: Pericles Pravitas
Music and sound design: Jeph Vanger
Original music composition (“FURIOSA”), voice transcription and lip sync: Dimitra Trypani
Lighting design: Eliza Alexandropoulou
Production Management: DELTA PI
Assignment – Production: ONASSIS STEGI
As Hara notes: “The occupied body: Perforated and plural, insolent and counterproductive, it gives in to an emancipatory and, often, healing fury. Since my teenage years I’ve had an obsession with horror films, especially anything involving haunted places and possession. The idea of a girl or woman speaking in many voices, in another language, spitting on her exorcist and opening her body wide, gave me a sense of fear and satisfaction. Years passed, my obsessions shifted to other realms and the feeling that everything was “haunted” and all people were “possessed” became a certainty. Bodies overflowing, knowing languages not taught, bodies entering a zone of danger and becoming threatening at the same time. Bodies forever outside of themselves, forms of experience that question the self-sufficiency and autonomy of the individual. The genealogy of occupied bodies narrates the impossibility of absolute solitude and reveals that speech and writing, action and consciousness, the immaterial and material worlds are haunted by voices that have gone before and voices that have yet to be born. By collecting an archive of sounds, images and materials, I attempted to get different voices to converse about the experience and the notion of occupation by forces that transcend the individual body, about solitude as an encounter with the spectral presences of memory and thought, about objects that carry other lives and, finally, about “the unheard songs”, the invisible music that inhabits the on-stage documents”.
September 26, 2023