Five ‘problem youths’ are occupying the stage. Often unconsciously, they have become experts in provoking the prevailing authorities. But this time, the roles are reversed, and they educate the audience. What happens when you are always the exception? And what do the rules and expectations of secondary education say about how we conceive of successful citizenship?
Lara Staal went in search of young people who refuse to adjust and who consistently challenge power relationships. Their perspective holds up a mirror to us: what can we learn from things that are inconvenient? They develop the script of this ‘lecture’ together. With beatboxer and musician Serdi Faki Alici on the team, some of the texts are reforged into rhythmic spoken word. Filmmaker Pascal Poisonnier films conversations with parents, teachers, counsellors and with Lara Staal herself. But ultimately, it is the young performers who are at the wheel and determine which material supports their argument.
• Lara Staal is a Dutch researcher, author and artist-curator. She recently developed gripping performative formats around social themes: Congres van de Utopie (Congress of the Utopia; with visual artist Jonas Staal), De Avond van de Woede (The Evening of Rage; with rapper Gideon Everduim) and Europe on Trial (with human rights activist Yoonis Osman Nuur). At NTGent, she is creating the series De Staat van (The State of).
direction Lara Staal | with Eliaz Bello Medrano, Seppe Jacobs, Isaac Van Weyenberg, Siham Lamrini, Haroun Couvreur, Serdi Faki Alici | coach Serdi Faki Alici | dramaturgy Eline Banken | set design Grischa Runge | video Pascal Poissonnier | production NTGent | in collaboration with several schools in Ghent| with the support of the Belgian Tax Shelter