(short video in situ by Festival A Corps, TAP Théâtre Auditorium de Poitiers)


In the contemporary Western artistic context, Consolation is perceived as an outdated performative gesture that belong to the sentimental sensibility of bourgeois theater. Critical emancipation (from Brecht to the Situationist International and beyond) and progressive, performative strategies of today are defined in direct opposition to the logic of Consolation. That is, contemporary art sees its role primarily as a place of protest and separation, of “didactic alienation” in which social conflicts and inequalities are exposed and diagnosed rather than temporarily reconciled. What was historically an essential element of artistic and theatrical experience as a cathartic and emotional reaction has now been demoted to a reactionary tool of political populism. Our project aims to re-appropriate the emotional power of Consolation and bring it back into contemporary performance practice.  
SNOW CLOUD focuses on the figure of the inconsolable, that is to say, those who do not want to detach themselves from the loss and can therefore no longer be comforted. Yet, the subversive charge of grief, which upsets and threatens the established order, lies in the fact that it provokes the subject’s reflexivity: “Why me?”, “Why now?” The loss is experienced as unjustifiable; from then on, it is the world that appears unjust. In this sense, there is a critical and political dimension in the desire for consolation. It incites the subjects to become sociologists, to take a step back to analyze the established social orders, adjust their glance in order to seek the causes of their suffering not in themselves but in the world that surround them, and forge the tools to emancipate themselves from those causes. Although essentially poetic, conceived in this way, inconsolable is also a figure that embody political gesture of resistance to an inherent (economical, racial, ecological) injustice of the society we are living in.

In SNOW CLOUD, tears never dry out. With traces and reverberations : the eyes are wet and the bodies are still shaken and inhabited by jolts, hiccups, breaths and lamentations. Visceral dispositive is thus one in which the expression of affect is reduced to essential materiality beyond psychological or emotional motivation. As such bodies of the performers are devoid of stage characterization and role playing. Their gestural score is affective and intense yet it is purified in order to reach ceremonial, technical and practical efficiency of a “lamenting machines”. In a tradition of professional mourners they are dwelling in a zone where pure simulacrum – fake tears – generate a visceral outlet for a sharing of a real grief. Bodies on stage are material conduits through which catharsis is ritualistically offered to a community. Performance is presented not to be decoded or interpreted but rather experienced in a direct affinity, across bodies.

Visceral simulacrum of mourning needed to be accompanied, framed and amplified by all the other elements of a dispositive. We imagined this generative coexistence between mediums of dance, voices, space/light and music as an evolving ecosystem which allow both for an autonomy of each “species” in it, and their balanced and fluid codependency. The aim was to find a dramaturgical balance and infinite hybridizations between the seductive and spectacular power of audio-visual performances and the intimate qualities offered by the somatic and vocal performance of the bodies on stage.

What interests us here, are the devices of simulacra put in play to channel the expressions of the pain and their allegorical forces. We wonder: is it still possible to embody and represent pathos when our contemporaneity opposes all vulnerability and glorifies only productivity? What do these trembling bodies caught in lights and sounds tell us? Is there, in the vulnerable and tense bodies of these inconsolable people, a saving force, a power or a resistance to the world that we should appreciate and understand now? 

SNOW CLOUD allows us to become witnesses of infinite hybrid combinations, between body, music and technology, which have now become an allegory of the need for change in our time.  

 Guillaume Marie


Conception, choreography and direction: Guillaume Marie
Created in collaboration and performed by: Maria Stamenkovic Herranz, Suet Wan Tsang and Aho Ssan
Light: Marcel Weber/MFO 
Original music: Aho Ssan
Wondertomb” written, composed and performed by Aho Ssan and Exzald S
Costumes: Cédrick Debeuf 
Stage manager, sound engineer: Maxime Niol
Choreography assistant: Suet Wan Tsang
Dramaturgy assistant: Igor Dobricic
Stage design assistant: Grégoire Gitton
Artistic collaborator for the research: Roger Sala Reyner
Management and booking: Camille Cabanes

Contact :
Camille Cabanes
06 67 99 48 92
Guillaume Marie,

Creation: april 2022, 1 & 2, Festival À Corps, le TAP- Théâtre Auditorium de Poitiers, France


TAP – Théâtre Auditorium de Poitiers, Tanzfabrik – Berlin, R.E.D.- Berlin, Festival Faits D’hiver, Micadanses – Paris, Antre Peaux – Bourges, Fond Transfabrik de l’Institut Français, Bourse Joint Adventure – Berlin

With the support of
la DRAC Ile de France, aide au projet 2022

CND Centre National de la Danse – Paris, Tanzfabrik – Berlin, Antre Peaux – Bourges, Maison des Arts de Créteil, Point Ephémère – Paris, Réservoir Danse – Rennes