The Lesson

Brutalust present an absurdist sound/theatre performance based on Eugene Ionesco’s play, The Lesson. It investigates cliché, niche ideologies, and language degradation, provoking authoritarian and totalitarian realities as present today as they were in 1951. The centre of the stage is occupied by a pre-strung rope contraption, a large cat’s cradle, sounding when touched. The performers play this woven instrument with their bodies, pulling it, leaning on it, and climbing through it, always at danger of becoming ensnared. They enter and exit different dialogues, performative and musical interactions premised on discussions had between the professor and pupil in Ionesco’s play. Excerpts from these conversations are projected at the back of the stage, letting the viewer make connections between what is seen and heard with what they read.

Performed and devised by Maria Sappho and Colin Frank. Presented at the Leeds Sounds Like THIS festival on March 14, 2020.