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Press releases


Customs - nothing to declare

Customs - nothing to declare

May 30 – June 14 2003

The international performance festival IN TRANSIT will bring about encounters with artists from Asia, the Pacific, Africa and Latin America, people who are redefining the performing arts. For the second time Ong Keng Sen, theatermaker from Singapore, will be taking over the artistic direction of IN TRANSIT, together with Johannes Odenthal of the House of World Cultures.
The theme of this year’s festival is "Customs – nothing to declare". The age of migration and mobility is overshadowed by borders and controls. But customs are also traditions and mores that globalization brings together. IN TRANSIT showcases performance art that is a balancing act between cultural roots and global mobility.
IN TRANSIT will open with Koffi Kôkô’s latest production, "Les feuilles qui resistent au vent", which translates the spirituality of Benin into contemporary dance. "Global Soul – The Buddha Project", a performance by Ong Ken Sen is also characterized by the wandering between different worlds.
One focus of the program is on artists from New York’s melting pot of: Ping Chong stages a new version of his oral history project "Undesirable Elements" together with Berliners, and Coco Fusco examines the exploitation of Mexican woman’s labor in the USA with her performance "The Incredible Disappearing Woman". In the BERLIN LAB the Afro-American choreographer Ralph Lemon will appear with the Beirut-born multimedia artist Walid Ra'ad.
Special attention is paid to gender issues: in "Report on Giving Birth" Wen Hui choreographs the way in which the one-child policy affects Chinese women’s lives. The New Zealand production "Diva Siva" presents the Fa'afafine, the third sex from Samoa, in a combination of cabaret and talk show. In his play "Mapplethorpe" Ismael Ivo thematises photographers’ fascination with the black body.

Press contact:
Annette Schäfer
House of World Cultures
John-Foster-Dulles-Allee 10
10557 Berlin
Tel.: 030-397 87-253