Peter Verhelst/NTGent [BE]
27.04 – 30.04.2016
Living with a monster
Peter Verhelst writes and directs a piece about the dark alliance between love and violence. A man returns from a military mission during which he has committed both murder and rape. His wife knows about this, but still allows him to come back home, out of love for her daughter. Is resilience and forgiveness enough to enable you to live with a monster? Our society is obsessed with transgressors – Verhelst, however, is obsessed with those who want to (or have to) live with them. Els Dottermans plays the mother, An Miller her daughter. You do not get to see the husband himself.
Peter Verhelst: ‘She takes her husband back into the house to prepare her daughter for the ‘real’ world, to give her the resilience she will need. But this is a hidden theme, and I do not want to reduce the story to just this. What the mother does, is that proof of resilience? Is it a sign of forgiveness? Do you consciously take back a monster into your house? After all, this is not how she knows her husband. Nevertheless, he has committed these acts. How do you deal with that? And as a parent how do you tell your child about it? Learning to live with guilt is always a complex matter. The man has committed the offences ‘during working hours’, as a soldier. But what is legitimized violence? Where does one draw the line?’
tekst & regie Peter Verhelst | met Els Dottermans & An Miller | decorontwerp Luc Goedertier | kostuumontwerp An De Mol | productie NTGent