The Depot

AKA: Festivalyentrum: DEPOT/theater im depot

Immermannstr. 39, Dortmund, Germany

The Depot: Data

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Who drank the wine? There are wine crates everywhere, nice to sit on sure, they are surprisingly comfortable, but a bit disapointing without the contents. There is a nice machine that allows people to go all the way to the ceiling, to hang fabric, to spit on people or to generally feel surperior to those below. Now there are lots of good places to hid, even sleep if you could do it standing up, wrapped in meters of felt. Beuys would be jealous.

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With some water, could you get ten bars of soap to stick together? They are thinking much more than ten, however. There were migrant workers on their knees, hunched deep over their work of placing soap, bar after bar on a stage.

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Where is the party? Apparently there is a wedding next door, a musician asked me for directions. I told her to go past the graves that had mysteriously sprouted cabage a few hours before. A man was banging the piles with a dust pan, fluffing then compressing the dark black earth. The soap floor finally finished, it came alive, becoming the living basis to a miniture world. It reflected the action of the people around it – explosive when treated roughly, soothing when caressed, amusing when tinkered with, alive in its own right. It comes from Warsaw, specially made without color or smell, but the materials themselves provide some of both. Like the elderly it too gets tired, recycled in to a new product, maybe next time with a different purpose. Only the very old and very young have time to laugh and play, the middle aged are too busy being good at things.

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Movement is a certain form of expression, not unique to dancers or performners. Everyone does it. Like the spoken word, there are many different languages – cultural habbits, learned actions, secret codes. Also like language, movements can be misunderstood, misinterpreted, inproperly translated or transmitted.

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Conferences are funny things when you are not attending, participants come out from the sessions, blink at the bright light of day and find their way to the coffee and snack table. I sat with the English refugees, making jokes, running away to desert islands with only three books. A rumor spread that the last session was in English, we pranced into the auditorium, so pleased to be included, one by one leaving again as German once again was released into the air.

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The Depot: Details

The Depot: Details


The Depot: Textures

The Depot: Textures

The Depot: Mysteries

The Depot: Mysteries


by Julie Upmeyer, Observer in Residence, Off Limits Festival & Symposium, 2007

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