text & direction Amir Reza Koohestani
assistant director Mohammad Reza Hosseinzadeh
with Mona Ahmadi, Ainaz Azarhoush, Elham Korda, Mahin Sadri
video Ali Shirkhodaei
music & sound Ankido Darash
light design Saba Kasmaei
stage design Amir Reza Koohestani assisted by Golnaz Bashiri
costumes & props Negar Nemati
second assistant Mohammad Khaksari
stage manager Mohammad Reza Najafi
costumes assistant Negar Bagheri
show in Farsi with supertitles
translation to English/French and supertitles adaptation Massoumeh Lahidji
running time 1h10
production Mehr Theatre Group
coproduction La Bâtie – Festival de Genève, Künstlerhaus Mousonturm Frankfurt am Main, BOZAR – Centre for Fine Arts Brussels
production managers Mohammad Reza Hosseinzadeh and Pierre Reis
company & tour manager Pierre Reis
Hearing was written during a residency at the Akademie Schloss Solitude (October 2014 – March 2015) in Stuttgart, Germany.
NOTE BY AMIR REZA KOOHESTANI
About a year or two ago, when I was watching Abbas Kiarostami’s Homework for the second (or third) time, I thought that these little boys who in response to Kiarostami’s supposedly simple questions such as “What is encouragement?” or “Have you done your homework?”, stare at the camera and ceiling, looking dizzy and hazy, seem so weird. I don’t want to “say” sick, but if nowadays a child gets this much afraid of being alone with a camera group in a closed room that he cries and asks them not to close the door, certainly they would take him to a therapist and psychiatrist.
But amid the war days, under Saddam’s missile strikes which the main aim was downrightly resistance and survival, there were not much people, except some such as Kiarostami, who thought about children’s mental and emotional health.
A while after, I heard that one of the film’s kids named Bahman, was Kiarostami’s own son.
I remembered that in the first meeting I had with Kiarostami, when he heard that I was born in 1978, he said my son is your age too. Therefore, these kids are an image of my child hood too. I looked like this too (If I wasn’t worse). So how come that a person with this kind of childhood intends to recognize his society’s best, as an intellectual?
In this play I want to find a connection between our fate today and that childhood and adolescence which we lived during the war and after that. Though the difference is that unlike Kiarostami’s film, I want to pursue female roles.
The girls’ dormitory was always like an unattainable castle.
The doors and windows had thousand kinds of fences, locks, barriers, with thick glasses and guards and the arrests at the entrance. After the entrance door, a female world begun in which the entree of any man was prohibited. Mahin, my girlfriend and actress of my latest plays – and probably the actress playing the role for the warden – who has lived in one the same University dormitories for a year, says: “If one technician was supposed to come and fix the air conditioner, before he came up, they would announce it in the microphone that way: ‘Dear girls, please observe your hijab, a man wants to come upstairs’.”
Now, presume that in a situation like this, one day, a girl reported that she had heard a man in one of the rooms. This would be the starting point of the performance.
. 27th and 28th August 2018 / Ingmar Bergman International Theatre Festival, Stockholm – Sweden
. 15th, 16th and 17th November 2018 / Théâtre National de Bretagne, Rennes – France
. 17th and 18th February 2018 / Triennale di Milano – Italy
. 1st and 2nd December 2017 / Teatro nacional D. Maria II, Lisbon – Portugal
. 21st and 22nd October 2017 / Palais des Beaux-Arts de Charleroi – Belgium
. 17th and 18th October 2017 / L’Apostrophe, Scène nationale Cergy-Pontoise & Val d’Oise – France
. 2nd October 2017 / MOT Festival, Skopje – Macedonia
. 29th September 2017 / BITEF Festival, Belgrade – Serbia
. 28th, 29th and 30th April 2017 / Onassis cultural Center, Athens – Greece
. 15th April 2017 / Osterfestival, Tirol – Austria
. 11th and 12th April 2017 / Kammerspiele, Munich – Germany
. 4th to 7th April 2017 / Le Lieu Unique with Le Grand T, Nantes – France*
. 1st April 2017 / CSS Udine – Italy
. 28th and 29th March 2017 / TAP, Poitiers – France*
. 21st to 24th March 2017 / CDN de Besançon with La Scène nationale de Besançon – France*
. 16th and 17th March 2017 / Le Théâtre d’Arles – France*
. 9th and 10th March 2017 / TANDEM – Scène nationale, Théâtre d’Arras – France*
. 13th and 14th December 2016 / La Comédie de Caen – France*
. 6th > 10th December 2016 / CDN de Haute Normandie, Rouen – France*
. 1st and 2nd December 2016 / Le Trident, Scène nationale de Cherbourg – France*
. 25th and 26th November 2016 / Bonlieu Scène nationale, Annecy – France*
. 18th and 19th November 2016 / Espaces Pluriels, Pau – France*
. 15th and 16th November 2016 / Théâtre de la Vignette, Montpellier – France*
. 22nd and 23rd October 2016 / Théâtre populaire romand, La Chaux-de-Fonds – Suisse
. 11th > 15th / 17th > 19th October 2016 / Festival d’Automne à Paris, Théâtre de La Bastille, Paris – France
. 6th and 7th October 2016 / Festival Des Arts de Bordeaux, Le Carré, Saint-Médard-en-Jalles – France
. 21st > 24th July 2016 / Festival d’Avignon, Théâtre Benoît-XII, Avignon – France
. 15th and 16th July 2016 / Santarcangelo Festival, Santarcangelo – Italy
. 18th and 19th June 2016 / Festival delle Colline Torinesi, Torino – Italy
. 23rd > 26th May 2016 / Kunstenfestivaldesarts, Bozar – Center for Fine Arts, Brussels – Belgium
. 13th and 14th April 2016 / Festival of International New Drama (F.I.N.D.), Schaubühne, Berlin – Germany
. 17th and 18th March 2016 / Black Box Theater, Oslo International Theater Festival – Norway
. 22nd and 23rd January 2016 / Festival Les Vagamondes, La Filature, scène nationale de Mulhouse – France
. 26th and 27th September 2015 / Théâtre Joliette Minoterie, Actoral, Marseille – France
. 22nd and 23rd September 2015 / Künstlerhaus Mousonturm Frankfurt am Main – Germany
. 29th, 30th and 31st August 2015 / La Bâtie – Festival de Genève – Switzerland
. 25th and 26th August 2015 / Noorderzon Festival, Groningen – Netherlands
. 19th, 20th and 21st August 2015 / Zürcher Theater Spektakel, Zurich – Switzerland
. 15th July > 14th August 2015 (39 shows) / City Theater, Tehran – Iran
* With support of l’ONDA (French office for contemporary performing arts circulation).