The Kinetoscope of Time
Kunstnernes Hus, Oslo International Theatre Festival at Black Box Theater, Oslo, Norway, 2015
Knipsu, Bergen, Norway, 2011
The Kinetoscope of Time is based on Brander Matthew’s story of the same name, which is allegedly the first gothic story based on cinema as a new technology. The audience is invited to enter a dark room with seating facing a green velvet curtain. A man enters from the side of the room. He stands in front of the curtain and begins to speak, an adaptation from Brander Matthews The Kinetoscope of Time, first published in 1895. The story is about a man’s encounter with a kinetoscope, an early motion picture device. The owner of the kinetoscope offers to show the man his own past, future and death. At a given point the performer pulls the curtain, revealing a series of perfectly repeated scenarios of a living room that appears to have been recently, and suddenly, abandoned. The performer then disappears, while the recorded voice continues telling the story of this place, describing, and repeating fragments that allude to a catastrophic reason for the room to have been abandoned.
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