Finally, the English and digital version of the performance Vår has its premiere tomorrow. It has been a long process there, but before I write a bit about the process, I can write some about the context of this performance. The performance is part of the storytelling festival Beyond the Border. A festival I have been present at both as a storyteller and listener. It is Europe’s oldest storytelling festival and everyone who is passionate about the oral storytelling has had the festival as a milestone in one’s formation as a storyteller.
I visited the festival already in the late 1990s and I remember one of my teachers in drama / theatre at the university said that it was the last forgotten hippie place on earth. It was a shock to be there, but also a huge feeling of being in connection. One slept in tents and there was a shared shower and toilet, which scared the crap out of me. I was not comfortable sharing a shower with a man. I lived on pizza during the days of the festival, because the world’s best pizza was sold there and heard stories all day. You get nostalgic thinking about the experience. There I met people I still have contact with.

This year the festival has included an online part of the festival. I have heard that several festivals want to try out a digital part as part of the program. In the Norwegian Cultural Council’s latest podcast episode, where the theme was digitization, among other things, it is told about an audience survey where it turns out that digitization has reached new audience groups. This applies, for example, to people over the age of 75 and the public who have disabilities.

Developing this performance has been a long process with many detours that began in 2018. We have a physical performance that is now up and running. Digitization began because of the pandemic. Thanks to Adverse Camber who took a chance on this strange thing!

It is a demanding process with a lot of learning, perhaps with a special focus on place and time. We in the team and the listeners are in two places, we have a physical connection, but are also virtual. The physical space for us performers and one technician is a half-timbered house inside a forest. we have turned a private home into a performative place with all that entails. The domestic gets a symbolic function. It is an experience that many of us have had in the last year. Our homes become public workplaces. Therein lies a vulnerability. A home is a private place where one should feel complete safe. By reshaping the home, a fragility arises because one gets intruders in a symbolic form.

Time is a big challenge in this process. The team is in different time zones, and even though the performance is streamed live, there is a delay in the time for the listeners. Technology also takes time. It takes a long time to set up for the show. And in addition, the performance refers to different historical times. Overall, it will be a demanding and filling experience. But we look forward to completing it tomorrow.

Then you might see that an avatar has interfered here in the blog post. This is because my avatar was included in the beginning, but has been edited away, precisely because it became too much to refer to. I take her with me here, so that she will still have a presence in the background.

Here you can get tickets to the performance

Here is the trailer:

And here is some interview:

You can read more here.