Yesterday I went to see Nowhere by Nilo Gallego and Chus Domínguez, and also by Luminita Moissi, Mirela Ivan, Angelica Simona Enache, Mariana Enache, Julián Mayorga, Jonas Mekas, Claudia Ramos, Raúl Alejos, Ana Cortés and Óscar Villegas. This work, in my opinion, is from all of them, each one is different, and this parity is just one of the many wonders of this theater piece. I could not like it more, I burst into tears, but they weren’t tears of grief but of pure joy and delight at the image of exiles, migrations and difficult worlds lived with real flesh and blood through singing and even laughter. I really liked the fact that the beautiful promises that Jonas Mekas made on the video from 11/7/2017 (“the small, the small, the personal”, spoken as he did, with a trembling but firm voice) were all fulfilled. And also that his authorship did not command or impose itself as the most important one on stage: the simple phrases of his diary from exile opened in a historical time (the Second World War) continuing on to the present of migrations brought by the phrases of the performers on stage. There was no importance given to the author’s name. The selected fragments from the newspaper talked about their refusal to go to the army in America because they’d fled Europe as “animals flee” from the war. They also talk about the nose bleeding while crossing the continent at war; about not wanting to work on Saturdays in a factory, and about snow in NYC. And then, a gate opens at the back of the scene, and it snows in Madriz. The snow is everywhere. Magic. I really liked the way the four actresses on stage sang, played and cooked, fearlessly, no imposition, no gesture detached from their presence. The experience of spending more than half of this piece without understanding their language (Romanian), and the moment (WONDERFUL: the best I’ve ever experienced in my life on stage in terms of verbal form) in which they change to the shared language, Spanish-Castilian, because Julián Mayorga (Colombian) and Claudia Ramos (from her accent she seems to be from the peninsula) were sitting at the table. The verb tenses were all over the place giving a liveliness to their speech, the way of saying, with full communication and many incredibly precise details. Green paper, white paper, small paper and large paper are different versions of the NIE (Foreigner Identity Number), that you could get in a place called Padre Piquer: if any Spanish-speaker is able to understand it better than anyone who does not speak the language, this person would lie. These words seem to mean specific things but the real meaning comes from the ones who use them and do not have the nationality. I really liked the music, the way Julián Mayorga interrupted the songs to explain things about them. Things such as the meaning of Tolima, or the difference between the European waltz, which traveled to America, and its American version: the pasillo. I was very pleased to see the display on the ground and the collection of each object in a truck with metal pieces that were for sale and other pieces from the world (a cardboard head, a dog, an accordion, traffic signs). I was neither bored nor amused, I just looked on with pleasure, I was very comfortable with and in this work. I still feel the joy and emotion I felt when leaving: these were very real because the transmission itself was very real. No show, no abuse, misuse or use of others by others (directors for example). No hierarchy, no money. The courage to stage material that could have been manipulated in a thousand ways; the success of each subject in action, including the spectator, will maintain its Agent, that is, its ability to think (the language) and act, in its own way, individually and together (as the language is more or less from all of them when the domain is removed). In short, I can’t explain, what goodness, beauty and justice. Holy crap! It is a must-see!
Text by María Salgado published in her blog Globo rápido.