(al-Ṯawrah al-mubaksalah / The Pixelated Revolution: the landing place of Rabih Mroué’s postdramatic theatre)
in La rivista di Arablit, a. II, n. 4, novembre/dicembre 2012, pp. 5-18.
The term postdramatic has become a key point of reference in international discussions of contemporary theatre. Within the Arab world, the pioneer of postdramatic theatre – which does not only concern formalistic issues, but also and especially ethics – is Rabih Mroué (born 1967), a Lebanese stage and screen actor, playwright and visual artist who has been writing and staging plays since 1990. His oeuvre includes videos and art installations, and his theatrical performances – which are based on the performative lecture and documentary theatre genres – are representative of the new wave of Arab theatrical representation.
His works mostly “deal with issues that have been swept under the table in the current political climate of Lebanon”, even though in his lecture-performance al-Ṯawrah al-mubaksalah / The Pixelated Revolution (2012), Rabih Mroué stages the narrative of images chosen from the Internet and among the videos posted by civilians trying to document the latest acts of violence witnessed in the on going Syrian Revolution. In this performance, Mroué explores the use of social media in the Syrian revolution, looking for correspondences between the aesthetics of films of protests and the principles of the “Dogme 95 Manifesto” created by Danish filmmakers in the 1990s.
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