“How are you?”
“I’m fine, considering the circumstances. And how are you?”
KOMMER is an awkward, spare, painfully funny portrait of human frailty in 50% theater, 50% film. The actors of the Amsterdam-based theater collective Kassys use precise movement and a deadpan delivery to create a stilted world on stage, where six people gather to mark and ponder the loss of a dear friend. Each person tries to absorb the news and give relief to the others, but the well-meant words and gestures wind up more like misplaced clichés. They reflect the inherent discomfort of the situation, stuck between tenderness and missed communication. In the second half of the performance, the actors leave the stage and the audience gets to catch a glimpse of their “real” lives, as they go out into the night after the show.
KOMMER means “sorrow” in Dutch
Kassys is a theater-initiative of Liesbeth Gritter and Mette van der Sijs, founded in 1999 and based in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Kassys make shows in which theater and film are combined to expose the codes of each medium, while taking as subject matter the beauty of human success and failure. The differences and similarities between “being yourself” and “pretending” are painfully displayed, as ordinary people deal with extraordinary and uncomfortable situations. With self mockery and humor, Kassys finds inspiration in the murky overlap of everyday human behavior, voyeurism and fiction.
MAPP International Productions (N.Y.C.) works in close partnership with diverse artists and arts organizers throughout the world to develop functional and sustainable environments for artists to create, premiere and tour performing arts projects. It provides support and opportunities for challenging artistic voices to be fully heard and engaged by bringing together arts, humanities and public dialogue. MAPP nurtures a diversity of contemporary artists who reside and create work in many parts of the world. By supporting a vital artistic exchange across borders that does not distinguish between U.S. and international work, MAPP embraces a global network and works to foster multidirectional infiltration and invigoration.
Performers: Mischa van Dullemen, Lukas Dijkema, Liesbeth Gritter, Ton Heijligers, Saskia Meulendijks, Esther Snelder
Director: Liesbeth Gritter
Coordination/Assistant Director: Mette van der Sijs
Technical director: Klaas Paradies
This North American tour of KOMMER is produced by MAPP International Productions.
Executive Director and Producer: Ann Rosenthal
Co-Director and Producer: Cathy Zimmerman
Associate Producer: Jordana Phokompe
KOMMER is a Kassys production, co-produced with Productiehuis [Frascati] in Amsterdam, Productiehuis Rotterdam (Rotterdamse Schouwburg) and Kunstencentrum Vooruit in Gent.
Funded by Fonds voor de Podiumkunsten, hetveemtheater Amsterdam, wpZimmer Antwerpen, Terschellings Oerol, VSB Fonds and Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds. The 2007 North American Tour has been supported by The Consulate General of The Netherlands in New York, Fonds voor de Podiumkunsten and OC&W.