Retina Maneuver is a solo lecture-performance that theatre maker Ping-Hsiang Wang is currently developing. The performance originates from his unexplainable obsession with Alicia Keys’s pop song "Girl On Fire," Frustration over not remembering where he was when the song was released in 2012 drives him to delve into his digital archives during the show. On stage, he meticulously searches through his cloud storage, email history, social media accounts, playlists, and even explores Time Machine backups, all in a determined effort to find those forgotten memories.
Ultimately, Wang stumbles upon a photo accidentally uploaded to his Facebook page and, with the help of Tropicamide, a pupil-dilating medication administered three times during the performance, he is transported back to the day of the single's release. There, he finds himself in a military setting, passionately engaged in bayonet drills and shouting the command "kill."
As his eyesight continues to deteriorate and the song “Girl On Fire” transforms into a marching tune for soldiers heading into battle, he reflects on whether these fragile memories portrayed on stage will be annihilated by the fire of war.
Supported by Fonds Darstellende Künste with funds from the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media
Supported by the residency program at PACT Zollverein (Essen), funded by the Ministry for Culture and Science of the State North Rhine-Westphalia
Coproduced by TATWERK | Performative Forschung
October 20, 2023
in the frame of WIPCOOP in Brussels (BE)
Further informations here.
By and with: Ping-Hsiang Wang
Dramaturgy: Wan Shi
Artistic Consultant: Kang-Hua Chang
Stage and Lighting Design: Yi-Ju Chou
Production Manager: Michael Rade
Wang Ping-Hsiang is a theatre director from Taiwan. His work has focused on how human behavior is being disciplined and modified through the evolution of materiality, the internet, systems, machinery, the environment, and commerce. Wang’s signature aesthetic is honed on the transference of normal daily landscapes into fantastic digital realities. He views theater as a perceptual vehicle for enabling new means of communication, and combines multiple performative elements using text, spoken language, sound, movement, live streaming video, objects, and scenography. His work posits narrative as a full sensory experience. In recent years, he has worked with diverse international theatre companies, including Agrupación Señor Serrano, Rimini Protokoll, and cmd+c company. Many festivals throughout Europe and Asia have presented his works, such as Romaeuropa in Italy, Grec Festival de Barcelona and TNT Festival in Spain, Festival de la Cité in Switzerland, and ¡Viva! Spanish & Latin American Festival in the UK.