Louis Andriessen: De Materie

Kultur Ruhr GmbH/Ruhrtriennale, Germany 

The production of the Ruhrtriennale festival under the direction of Heiner Goebbels features the first restaging of Louis Andriessen’s musical theater De Materie since its premiere in 1989. Born in 1939 Andriessen is now one of the key figures on the contemporary Dutch art scene. De Materie, whose restaging is now being supported by the Ernst von Siemens Music Foundation, reflects the interlinking contexts between material, spirit and society in a changing array of perspectives akin to four comprehensive chapters of a book or the movements of a symphony. Each of the four quite separate parts processes very disparate fragments of mainly Dutch texts dating from the 13th to the 20th centuries: the political document of the Dutch declaration of independence from 1581, a list taken from a book on shipbuilding by Nicolaes Witsen dating from 1690, a philosophical essay on the natural sciences by David Gorlaeus from 1651, the eroto-religious vision of a mystic and nun from the 13th century, an art history manifesto from the start of the 20th century, a private note of memories of Piet Mondriaan, a poem from the 19th century, a diary and a public speech by Nobel prizewinner Marie Curie. Here individual experience repeatedly encounters the principle: the nun encounters God, the mistress encounters Piet Mondriaan dubbed the "Dancing Madonna" and also the principles of Constructivist art and the brilliant physicians Pierre and Marie Curie encounter radioactivity. With its impressive dimensions the industrial Kraftzentrale venue in the landscape park Landschaftspark Duisburg forms the suitable setting for the staging of De Materie care of Heiner Goebbels and his team. 

August 15–17, 22–24, 2014 
Kraftzentrale, Landschaftspark Duisburg, Germany