© Julian Röder
JESSICA - An Incarnation
By Susanne Kennedy & Markus Selg
„She calls because she is suffering from the internal chaos in which we live. She calls, so that we open our eyes. She is asking us why we are here, what we want. She wants us to question everything.“
Collaborating with the artist and stage designer Markus Selg, Susanne Kennedy has conceived her new piece which sketches the story of a prophetess. Her text follows a hyperlink dramaturgy, she compiles materials from forums and blogs on the internet, interviews and religious texts.
JESSICA might be a direct descendant of a Jesus figure, she’s died to come alive again. JESSICA’s near-death experience makes her fund a company called ANAMNESIS, which develops technologies allowing the disciples around her to look back on their life from a near-death experience perspective. Around JESSICA gathers a community of disciples who want to believe in her and this technology, in search of redemption. Within this group, a multitude of voices and attitudes emerge that a figure like JESSICA could also evoke in our society.
JESSICA – an Incarnation explores the age-old question of what constitutes our existence, our consciousness, as well as the perception of what we consider reality and what we exclude. Between ritual and theater, between past and future, Susanne Kennedy explores with JESSICA a prophetic figure and her impact. The theater becomes the site of an ontological, transcendental exploration of the nature of the human being: ‚JESSICA – an Incarnation contains both accounts of experience and analyses of their possible meaning, but the line between the two is so thin as to be nearly nonexistent.‘
Susanne Kennedy (Germany, 1977) studied direction at the Hogeschool voor de Kunsten in Amsterdam, debuted on the Dutch stage. In 2011 she was invited to work at the Münchner Kammerspiele. For “Fegefeuer in Ingolstadt,” she was voted Young Director of the Year by Theater heute magazine in 2013. In recent years, she has been working with Volksbühne Berlin and Münchner Kammerspiele, produced “Ultraworld” and “Oracle” with Markus Selg in 2020. Distorted by masks, playback dialogue, doppelgängers and multimedia, the actors confront the audience with a post-humanistic subjectivity.
Markus Selg (Germany, 1974) is a multimedia artist exploring the dynamics between archaic myth and computer technology in forms of digital painting, sculpture, immersive installations, theatre and VR. For “Ultraworld” he received the Faust Award 2020 for best stage design. He has been active across a variety of genres, including performing art, feature films, and opera productions.
Bianca van der Schoot
Regie & Text
Conception Vocal Interludes
Jessica: Kasia Tórz
Jude: Benjamin Radjaipour
John: Remo Joe Bittner
Andrew: Frank Willens
Mary: Ibadet Ramadani
Interviewer: Kate Strong
Anna: Inga Busch
Podcast host: Sir Henry
Simone: Ami Garmon
Volksbühne am Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz
Boogaerdt/Van der Schoot